Inside the world's largest wind tunnel

The United States Air Force operates the 80x120-foot wind tunnel at Moffett Field in Mountain View, Calif., where researchers put aeronautics to the test.

Only U.S. citizens are allowed to see inside the huge facility located at Moffett Field in Mountain View, Calif.
Only U.S. citizens are allowed inside the wind tunnel facility at NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field in Mountain View, Calif., where researchers put aeronautics to the test. James Martin/CNET
Branch Chief of the Aeromechanics Branch Flight Vehicle Research and Technology Division Dr. William Warmbrodt talks about some of the advanced helicopter research which takes place there.
William Warmbrodt, branch chief of the Aeromechanics Branch Flight Vehicle Research and Technology Division, talks about some of the advanced helicopter research taking place there. James Martin/CNET
The wind tunnel is the largest in the world at 80x120 feet. It was built in the 1940s and uses 100 megawatts of power to generate the 100-knot winds.
The wind tunnel is the largest in the world at 80x120 feet. It was built in the 1940s and uses 100 megawatts of power to generate the 100-knot winds. James Martin/CNET
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About the author

James Martin is the staff photographer at CNET News, covering the geeks and gadgets of Silicon Valley. When he's not live-blogging the latest product launches from Apple, Google, or Facebook, James can be found exploring NASA, probing robotics labs, and getting behind-the-scenes with some of the Bay Area's most innovative thinkers.

 

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