The global award in photography and sustainability

Taryn Simon
Exploding Warhead, Test Area C-80C, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida This is a test of an MK-84 IM (Insensitive Munition) Warhead conducted at the Eglin Air Force Base Air Armament Center. The warhead was tested by the 46th Test Wing’s 780th Test Squadron in order to collect pressure and fragment velocity data on a new, experimental explosive warhead fill. Eglin AFB was formerly part of the Choctawhatchee National Forest. All 384,000 acres of the forest were transferred to the War Department during World War II for the fast expansion of the Army Air Corps. The Eglin base has access to 86,000 square miles of airspace, allowing for long-range, all-altitude, air-to-air, air-to-surface, surface-to-surface, and anti-ship evaluation tests and training exercises. The Air Armament Center is responsible for the development, testing and deployment of all U.S. air-delivered weapons. It tripled its production of Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) for Operation Iraqi Freedom. Air Force Materiel Command Public Affairs reported in 2006 that the air strike munitions which killed the Iraq-based al Qaeda leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, were developed at the Eglin Air Armament Center. This photograph was taken using a remote sequencer that detonated the warhead from a control bunker.

Series: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar
Chromogenic color print
94.6 x 113 cm
Eglin Air Force Base, Florida