Photo of the Week: Sandia’s Centrifuge Test Complex

on May 21, 2014 at 5:00 PM


Sandia National Laboratories are home to the state-of-the-art Centrifuge Test Complex, with both indoor and outdoor centrifuges designed to simulate environments and situations with high inertial forces, like atmospheric reentry and jet aircraft acceleration. This photo shows the 29-foot-radius indoor centrifuge that’s housed in an underground, temperature-controlled environment. The centrifuge can accelerate a maximum payload of 16,000 pounds to 100 Gs, or lighter loads to 300 Gs, allowing researchers to develop satellite and rocket components, geotechnical loads and sensing devices, to name a few. Pictured here, Glenn Yarborough inspects the centrifuge arm while Orlando Abeyta (left) and Ed Romero (right) work above. Photo by Randy Montoya, Sandia National Laboratories.

Every week, we’ll feature our favorite energy-related photo here on, at and on Twitter via @ENERGY. For other photos of the week, view our gallery. If you have ideas for Photo of the Week, send us an email at [email protected].