AEDC wind tunnel Tim Wright

Members of the community are invited to help the men and women of the Arnold Engineering Development Complex celebrate the organization's 70th anniversary next month.

The "Hap Arnold Day" 70th Anniversary Celebration will take place at Arnold Air Force Base, where AEDC is headquartered, on June 26 from noon to 4 p.m.

The drive-through event, beginning at the Main Gate, will highlight the mission capabilities and accomplishments of AEDC personnel. The open house will feature displays, virtual facility tours and informational booths along the route. Pre-packaged food will be available for cash-only purchase.

"The team at Arnold Air Force Base is very excited to open the gates, pull back the curtain, so to speak, and give the public some insight on the work performed here in pursuit of the AEDC mission," said AEDC Commander Col. Jeffrey Geraghty. "We hope members of the community take advantage of this opportunity to learn more about the vital role this installation continues to play within the Air Force and in meeting the demands of national defense."

On June 25, 1951, President Harry S. Truman visited Arnold Air Force Base to dedicate the site as the Arnold Engineering Development Center in honor of Gen. Henry "Hap" Arnold. Arnold is credited with helping to bring the testing center to fruition.

The Arnold Engineering Development Center was re-designated as Arnold Engineering Development Complex in July 2012. AEDC operates nearly 70 aerodynamic and propulsion wind tunnels, rocket and turbine engine test cells, space environmental chambers, arc heaters, ballistic ranges and other specialized units located across eight states. The AEDC mission is to prove the superiority of systems required to meet the demands of the National Defense Strategy.

To comply with Department of Defense COVID-19 restrictions, visitors must remain in their vehicles. If they are required to exit their vehicle, appropriate facial coverings and social distancing will be enforced.

Many areas of Arnold AFB are considered an industrial area, and visitors must stay on the prescribed route provided upon entry of the Main Gate and obey all traffic rules. The policy of the DOD is to only permit the display of specific flags which promote unity and esprit-de-corps. Any person displaying an impermissible flag will be turned away.

For the most up-to-date event information visit the Arnold Engineering Development Complex Facebook page @ArnoldAirForceBase.

The Tullahoma News is planning a special edition commemorating the history and accomplishments of AEDC. Look for it in the paper prior to the June 26 event.