Cold War-era Nuclear Testing Resources at the Nevada National Security Site

February 2024

Presenter: Greg Haynes, Associate Research Professor, Desert Research Institute

During the Cold War, the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) was used as the nation’s nuclear testing ground; from 1951 to 1992 100 atmospheric and 828 underground tests were conducted there. Over the years, historic preservation efforts by Desert Research Institute (DRI) on behalf of the National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Field Office (NNSA/NFO) have documented a wide variety of cultural resources on the NNSS from Native American archaeological sites to late twentieth century Cold War-era architectural resources. This talk will discuss the kinds of cultural resources present on the NNSS but will focus on two specially designed Cold War properties: the Huron King Test Chamber and what are colloquially known as Glass Houses.

Photo: The Huron King Test Chamber in 2022. This mobile chamber tested the effects of an electromagnetic pulse on a defense communications satellite housed within its interior.

This talk is part of our Monthly Speaker Series. A recording of the Zoom Webinar can be found on our YouTube Channel here

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