Rappel Towers and Inclined Walls for U.S. Military
White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico

Leavitt Engineering has a niche for designing unique and unusual structures. This talent was employed to create a rappel tower and an inclined wall used by the United States military for training purposes.

The rappel tower was constructed with a concentrically braced steel frame with a central stair tower, providing access to the four training levels.  

Our responsibilities included structural design, construction specifications, engineering drawings, and shop fabrication and erection drawings. The tower was designed for worst-case wind and seismic loads so that the structure can be built at multiple locations throughout the United States without additional analysis.

The tower constructed for the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico included two sides designed for rappelling; one side designed with a fast rope assembly which simulates descending from a helicopter. The fourth side was designed for wall climbing.

Leavitt Engineering has also designed a rappel tower and inclined wall for the Fort Richardson military base located in Anchorage, Alaska. The Fort Richardson structure includes design criteria intended to meet the requirements for cold weather engineering practices. The inclined wall structure includes a stair tower attached to a 40-foot long inclined wall with a 45-degree slope used for rappel training.

Similar structures are currently being planned for military and emergency services training facilities in Atlanta, Georgia; Honolulu, Hawaii; and throughout the United States.

Additional images:

Back view of rappel tower.

Front view of inclined wall.

Back view of inclined wall.