Military bases are unlike any other large facility; sure, you’ll find collections of standard buildings and everything you would expect to find in a complex of such size, but this is about much more than that. The need to have bases with a wide range of activities has led to some facilities that have highly unusual purposes, or built on strange locations. This list features 10 of the most unusual military bases around the world. Enjoy!
10. Thule Air Base | Most Unusual Military Bases In The World
The Thule Air Base is the United States’ most northerly military installation, located deep within the Arctic Circle. It is basically an early warning system, able to detect any intercontinental ballistic missiles that may arrive from enemies such as Russia. It is also used to monitor space traffic and detect any anomalies above the Earth’s atmosphere. Due to harsh conditions, the base was built on a thick layer of ice that remains permanently frozen, and all the sewage and wiring is kept above ground.
9. Pine Gap | Most Unusual Military Bases on earth
Pine Gap, or the Joint Defence Facility Pine Gap, is jointly operated by the United States and Australia. The facility offers various agencies, including the CIA and NSA, access to surveillance equipment to monitor for potential threats and to gather data to be used for carrying out drone strikes in the Eastern Hemisphere.
8. Devil’s Tower Camp | Most Unusual Military Base
Devil’s Tower Camp is a large military base in the British controlled Gibraltar. The current garrison of troops operates out of Devil’s Tower Camp go through different types of training here, including tunnel warfare in a specially built underground network, parachuting, diving and even a model town to provide urban warfare training.
7. USAMRIID | Military Base
The united States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases is a facility that sites in Fort Detrick, Maryland. It is a U.S. army base that is home to efforts at creating defense measures against biological warfare. The base holds samples of a number of diseases, such as anthrax and the plague; due to the nature of the type of material it contains, the entire base needs to be airtight at all times.
6. Kwajalein Atoll
The Kwajalein Atoll military base is a Pacific island military complex. Made up of a collection of more than eleven islands leased from the Republic of the Marshall Island, they offer a perfect site for a military base due to the fact that it is so isolated and free from radio communication waves that could interfere with tests.
Duga-3 was a huge Russian radio antenna in Ukraine. The vast structure made up a significant part of the radar system used by the Soviet Union to detect incoming enemy attack in the form of missiles. It sent out incredibly powerful radio waves that could be heard around the world on various devices, since 1976. However, the vast array was turned off in 1989.
4. Cheyenne Mountain Nuclear Bunker
The Cheyenne Mountain nuclear bunker was the original home of NORAD and the Air Force Space Command; it was designed to detect any missile attack on the United States, as well as be able to withstand attacks from even the most sophisticated and powerful weapons. With an entire mountain’s worth of granite for protection, along with 25-ton blast doors and specially built springs to absorb impact, the base would likely survive all but the deadliest of attacks.
3. Zeljava Airbase
The Zeljava Airbase is a large underground facility that sits along the borders between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Extremely expensive, it was one of the largest underground facilities in Europe, as well as being the biggest military airbase in the former Yugoslavia. Its purpose was similar to NORAD in the United States, with the additional purpose of protecting the inhabitants from a potential nuclear explosion.
2. HAARP Research Station
This complex is home to the High Frequency Auroral Research Program, which aims to use high-frequency radio-waves to interfere with the ionosphere, which can then be made to create an effect similar to the aurora borealis. The research will supposedly aid in the communication with deep sea submarines or even help transmit data with satellites.
1. Maunsell Forts
The Maunsell Forts are a collection of fortified towers that were built during World War II. Their purpose was to protect the United Kingdom from incoming air raids into the country, and to stop any German ships from attempting to lay mines into what was an essential shipping lane. Many of the towers have since been destroyed, although one now operates a micro-nation known as the Principality of Sealand.