Kirtland AFB Community
377TH AIR BASE WING
The mission of the 377th Air Base Wing, Kirtland’s host organization, is to execute nuclear, readiness and support operations for American air power. Kirtland AFB is a center for research, development and testing of nonconventional weapons, space and missile technology and laser warfare. Some of the organizations involved include the Department of Energy, Sandia National Laboratories, the Air Force Research Laboratory, the Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Center, the Space and Missile Systems Center, the Air Force Inspection Agency and the Air Force Safety Center.
In addition, the 377th ensures readiness and training of airmen for worldwide duty. It operates the airfield, prepares personnel to deploy worldwide on a moment’s notice and keeps the base secure. Players in this mission include the 58th Special Operations Wing, the 150th Special Operations Wing (New Mexico Air National Guard) and the U.S. Air Force Pararescue School.
The 377th is made up of about 1,200 active-duty military, 591 federal civilians and 720 contractors assigned to the Medical Group, Mission Support Group, Security Forces Group, Maintenance Group and 13 wing staff agencies.
As the host organization, the 377th Air Base Wing is also responsible for providing support to base operations. It ensures that people living and working on Kirtland AFB have the necessary support to conduct their jobs and carry out missions. This includes such things as facility maintenance, personnel support, security, utilities and medical care.
AIR FORCE NUCLEAR WEAPONS CENTER
The Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center ensures that the nuclear weapons systems supporting the national command and the Air Force warfighter are safe, secure and reliable. Established in 2006, the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center (AFNWC) is the Air Force Materiel Command’s center of excellence for nuclear weapon systems. The AFNWC’s responsibilities include acquisition, modernization and sustainment of nuclear system programs for both the Departments of Defense
AIR FORCE RESEARCH LABORATORY
Directed Energy Directorate
The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Directed Energy Directorate is the Air Force’s center of expertise for directed energy and optical technologies. The Directed Energy Directorate develops and transitions technologies in four core technical competencies: lasers systems, high power electromagnetics, weapons modeling and simulation, and directed energy and electro-optics for space superiority. The directorate is at Kirtland Air Force Base.
AFRL pioneered the first and only megawatt-class airborne laser and is a world leader in ground-based space imaging, using adaptive optics with a 3.5-meter telescope in New Mexico and a 3.6-meter telescope in Hawaii. The directorate is transitioning game-changing counter-electronics weapon technologies through programs such as CHAMP (Counter-electronics High-powered Advanced Missile Project), which can disable electronic systems with minimum collateral damage.
Space Vehicles Directorate
The Space Vehicles Directorate serves as the Air Force’s “Center of Excellence” for space technology research and development. The directorate develops and transitions space technologies to provide space-based capabilities. Primary mission areas include space-based intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, space situational awareness, space communications, position navigation and timing, and defensive space control (protecting space assets from manmade and natural effects). The directorate also leverages commercial, civil and other government resources to stay one step ahead in space and to ensure America’s advantage.
58TH SPECIAL OPERATIONS WING
The 58th Special Operations Wing is an Air Education and Training Command unit that trains mission-ready special operations, combat search and rescue, missile site support and UH-1 helicopter airlift crews. The 58th Special Operations Wing operates two types of helicopters, three specialized versions of the C-130 four-engine turboprop aircraft, and the tilt-rotor CV-22 Osprey aircraft.
The 150th Special Operations Wing of the New Mexico Air National Guard joined the 58th Special Operations Wing, an active Air Force unit, on Dec. 1, 2013, in an associate unit status.
- 21st Ordnance Company (EOD WMD)
- Advanced Systems and Development Directorate
- Air Force Office of Special Investigations, Det. 116
- Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps, Det. 510
- American Red Cross
- Area Defense Counsel
- Civil Air Patrol, New Mexico
- Missile Defense Agency
- 150th Special Operations Wing
The 150th Special Operations Wing’s mission is to train mission-ready special operations and combat search and rescue crews through a total force integration with the 58th Special Operations Wing. The wing also includes the 250th Intelligence Squadron, which provides precision Targeting and Geospatial Intelligence to Air Force and Joint Warfighters. The 150th is also responsible for training and equipping more than 900 wing personnel to support both state and federal missions.
Operationally Responsive Space
The mission of Operationally Responsive Space is to plan and prepare for the rapid development of highly responsive space capabilities that enable delivery of timely warfighting effects and, when directed, to develop and support deployment and operations of these capabilities to enhance and assure support to Joint Force Commanders’ and other users’ needs for on-demand space support, augmentation and reconstitution.
Air Force Safety Center
This agency’s mission is to preserve and enhance combat capability through resource preservation for both airmen and equipment through mishap elimination.
Air Force Operational Test & Evaluation Center (AFOTEC)
This center is the Air Force’s independent test agency responsible for testing, under operationally realistic conditions, new systems being developed for Air Force and multi-service use. AFOTEC employs more than 600 military and civilian personnel at its headquarters and five detachments, including Kirtland, and multiple operating locations across the country.
705th Combat Training Squadron
This squadron provides high-fidelity theater synthetic battle spaces and world-class exercise control to support joint distributed warfighter training, testing and experimentation across the operational and tactical levels of war.
351st Battlefield Airman Training Squadron
On June 14, 2016, the Air Force activated the 351st Battlefield Airmen Training Squadron and deactivated Det. 1, 342nd Training Squadron. The 351st is responsible for training, mentoring and developing battlefield airmen in land warfare and technical recovery skills. It is one of four new squadrons that will report directly to the Battlefield Airmen Training Group, which activated June 2 and trains the Air Force’s tactical ground component in technical rescue.
This squadron provides the highest quality pararescuemen and combat rescue officer personnel capable of worldwide deployment for rescue and recovery operations.
Air Force pararescuemen, also known as PJs, are the only DOD specialty specifically trained and equipped to conduct conventional or unconventional rescue and recovery operations. PJs are the force of choice for assisted survivor recovery. A pararescueman’s primary function is as a personnel recovery specialist, with emergency medical capabilities in humanitarian and combat environments. They deploy in any available manner, including air-land-sea tactics, into restricted environments to authenticate, extract, treat, stabilize and evacuate injured personnel while acting in an enemy-evading, recovery role. PJs participate in conventional or nonconventional recovery, combat search and rescue, recovery support for NASA and conduct other operations as appropriate.
Their motto, “That Others May Live,” reaffirms the pararescueman’s commitment to saving lives and self-sacrifice.
Defense Threat Reduction Agency
The agency’s mission is to safeguard the United States and its allies from weapons of mass destruction (WMD) by providing capabilities to reduce, eliminate and counter any threat and mitigate its effects. Its focus is to keep such weapons out of the hands of terrorists and other enemies by locking down, monitoring and destroying the weapons and their related materials. It also helps combatant commanders with their plans and responses to WMD events and develops and delivers cutting-edge technologies to assist with all these endeavors.
Sandia National Laboratories
Sandia National Laboratories, covering nearly 3,000 acres on Kirtland Air Force Base, develops technologies to sustain, modernize and protect the country’s nuclear arsenal, prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction, defend against terrorism, protect our national infrastructures, ensure stable energy and water supplies, and provide new capabilities to our armed forces.