The Test Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment Activity held a ribbon-cutting ceremony June 20 for a newly renovated building which will house its Region Europe headquarters and the Area Calibration Lab.

"Our new home will be located on Rhein Ordnance Barracks-Weilerbach in the Kaiserslautern military community," Jennifer Holloman, chief of the Operations Support Office, Region Europe, said.

USATA executive director James Johnson attended the ceremony. Col. Ronald Green, commander of the 405th Armed Forces Sustainment Brigade and an avid supporter of the TMDE mission in Europe, was also present. Employees from USATA Region Europe, as well as representatives from the 405th and Department of Public Works, were there to witness this historic event. After the ceremony, Johnson and Green were given a tour of the facility followed by a reception.

The Region Europe headquarters and the ACL have been in the Pirmasens area for many years. The headquarters has been there since 1993 and in their current building since late 1998. The ACL has been in their leased facility since 1984. The consolidation of the logistic footprint in Germany has caused many of the U.S. Army installations to close and relocate or consolidate capabilities elsewhere in Europe. Force protection has also been a major concern at remote facilities within Europe such as the facilities in Pirmasens.

"With this in mind, IMCOM-Europe began to look for a new location on an existing installation to house our TMDE support operations," Holloman said. "They were able to find a building to suit our purposes. This building formerly held a Patriot Missile Repair operation and encompassed two separate sides connected by an underground hallway. The building was structurally sound and each side was an open space, perfect for upgrading the interior to hold a state-of-the-art TMDE lab and headquarters. In addition, it is in a location that will serve us and our customers well, right in the heart of the Kaiserslautern military community within easy reach of local customers and shipping and receiving points.

"With the open interior of the building, we had the opportunity to design a facility to specifically meet our needs. The calibration technicians in the current ACL facility have been working out of old modules which were installed in the building in the 1980s. They encompass a total square footage of approximately 360 square meters. The new laboratory area will be over 480 square meters.

"The other half of the building will house our Nucleonic Lab which is currently in the design process," Holloman added. "Once the Nucleonic Lab has moved to the Kaiserslautern area, we will have all of Region Europe headquarters, the ACL and Nucleonics in the same location. This total project will greatly enhance our ability to perform our mission in a combined location using state-of the-art facilities."

Movement to the new facility is scheduled to begin in early August.

The Test Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment Activity executes the Army's Test Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment calibration and repair support program.

USATA is the Army's recognized leader for advanced, state-of-the-art metrology, i.e., precision measurements, and provides the technical expertise and worldwide facilities comprising the Army's calibration and repair support program. The activity oversees and supports more than 730,000 pieces of test equipment worldwide and carries out its mission with measurement accuracies traceable to the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

The activity supports every weapon system currently in the Army inventory and provides support to other Department of Defense, federal and state government agencies including the Army National Guard, Army Reserve, Department of Homeland Security, National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the U.S. Coast Guard.

The activity is an essential component of Army maintenance. Calibrated TMDE verifies that measurements made on the battlefield, in the repair shop, and at the depot are the same as those used in the original equipment design. TMDE used at any level of maintenance has the ability to test, adjust and synchronize equipment and its associated components by using highly precise measurements. These measurements ensure the accuracy, safety, readiness and information assurance of weapon platforms and equipment across the physical/dimensional, radiological, electrical, electronic and electro--optical spectrums. The capability of Army weapon platforms and associated systems to operate accurately and effectively depends on the synchronization of these precise measurements against known standards.

The activity's unique worldwide calibration mission is headquartered at Redstone Arsenal. The program is executed via an integrated, hierarchical network of TMDE support activities located around the world and arranged into four geographic regions, each containing a regional headquarters and director. (Test Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment Activity release)