Sandia uses components from past nuclear technology in today's training

Sandia National Laboratories is using technology and components from old nuclear systems to connect nuclear engineers with the past in the Nuclear Weapon Legacy Hardware Project, it announced Thursday.

This project, along with the Weapon Display Area in New Mexico and the California National Security Resource Center is focused on preserving the hardware used in old nuclear weapons systems for study.

"Tremendous amounts of knowledge are represented by this hardware, and being able to pick up and examine these legacy items can often greatly enhance learning over just studying archive drawings and reports,” John Whitley, a manager within the Weapon Engineering Professional Department at Sandia, said.

Approximately 20 years ago John Hogan, a retired Sandia scientist and former instructor of Sandia's weapon training programs, began to set aside this equipment. According to the report, other staff members added to this collection. 

In 2007, a classified letter to Sandia directors urged the study of the laboratory's legacy hardware collection and those at certain testing sites.

Among the collection of equipment are designs that ended up not being widely used and offer today's engineers and scientists a sense of the thought process and advanced methodologies behind the equipment.

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