North Range (click here to view larger image)
The North Test Area is 10,000 yards long and 2,750 yards wide. Depth varies from 60 feet at the firing pier on Gould Island to less than 20 feet at the northernmost end.
The torpedo range is a Restricted Area, and therefore can be patrolled during tests to eliminate commercial or recreational craft interference with testing. It is in a protected and relatively calm area, thus creating more opportunities for good operating conditions. Sixteen moored SWATS buoys can provide a tracking area of approximately 8 square miles. The range’s close proximity to shore facilities allows quick, low cost response to emergent situations.
Hole Area (click here to view larger image)
The Hole Test Area is an elliptical depression located on the east side of Gould Island within the restricted torpedo range and has a maximum depth of 127 feet. SWATS tracking buoys can provide a tracking area of approximately 1 mile by 1/2 mile. As with the North Test area, the Hole Test Area is situated in a protected area just minutes from the NBSWTF shore facilities.
Outer Range (click here to view larger image)
The Outer Range, in the Rhode Island Sound Test Area, is a Restricted Area, 4,000 yards wide and 17,500 yards long. Water depth varies from 100 feet at the northern end to about 120 feet at the southern end. The range is located within the Traffic Separation Zone near the approach to Narragansett Bay. Up to sixteen buoys can be located within the test area providing approximately 8 square miles of tracking coverage.
Anchored to the bottom 356 feet below the surface is one of the largest conventional submarines in the Navy. What once was the USS Salmon (SS-573) is now a clean, environmentally safe, and realistic target that is available for a variety of test and evaluation scenarios.
A video survey was performed in 1999 as a follow up of an initial post SINKEX survey done in 1994. The depth of the keel in the mud indicates that the vessel has leaked and is most likely completely flooded.
An exercise mine field and a portable moored acoustic tracking system can be deployed in the area when required for testing.