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Sandia Programs Engineering and Assembly Research facility opened this summer

LIVERMORE, Calif. — Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty, Administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and U.S. Department of Energy’s Under Secretary for Nuclear Security, toured a new facility at Sandia National Laboratories’ California campus.

The Sandia Programs Engineering and Assembly Research (SPEAR) facility expands Sandia’s capacity to assemble and electrically test components and systems for the Nation’s nuclear weapons stockpile. The new 10,000-square-foot facility also contributes to Sandia’s weapons systems engineering capability in California that will be critical to meeting the demands of the nuclear modernization programs moving forward.

I applaud the commitment Sandia continues to make to ensure that NNSA meets the needs of the Nation and that comprehensive data from work conducted at the SPEAR facility will meet U.S. Department of Defense requirements.

Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty
NNSA Administrator

“This new facility is an excellent addition to Sandia National Laboratories and to NNSA,” said Administrator Gordon-Hagerty. “I applaud the commitment Sandia continues to make to ensure that NNSA meets the needs of the Nation and that comprehensive data from work conducted at the SPEAR facility will meet U.S. Department of Defense requirements.” 

Experiments performed at the facility will help weapons systems engineers deeply understand hardware systems performance to ensure the safety and reliability of the Nation’s nuclear deterrent. Sandia is the design and engineering lab for non-nuclear components of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile.

SPEAR includes a laboratory for functional electrical testing of weapons assemblies. The lab is equipped with thermal chambers that enable Sandia engineers to perform electrical tests at simulated environment temperatures. In addition, the facility will feature space and equipment for building hardware models and securely storing components, equipment and assembled test units.

The new facility also includes a portable weapons systems simulator, soldering benches with fume extraction hoods for spot repair, as well as test instrumentation, power supplies, wave-form generators and additional equipment that help ensure the parts are reliable and safe. Visitor workspaces and video teleconference rooms will facilitate close collaboration with Sandia systems engineers and nuclear security partners throughout the Enterprise.