Orford Ness Military Base / AWRE and Orfordness Transmitting Station May 2020

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Snap, always been intrigued by the pagodas. I fancied doing the National Trust tour some time but have heard that you're somewhat restricted in where you can actually go once on site.

In terms of the white wall tiles, those look like mineral fibre tegular ceiling tiles that somebody's mounted on a wall to absorb sound. By spacing them off the wall you create a void behind the tile so that any sound passing through a hole is absorbed by its back face. Suspect that space was used as a generator or compressor room.

You could always sneak off ;)

Ah yeah now you mention it, the floor would indicate such uses.
 
Great report. Went there about 7 yrs ago, Lighthouse was still there, the power of the sea. If you go on the National Trust day you are restricted & can't visit the Patognia buildings, however the place is so vast it's quite easy to nip over and see them, I should know I did
 
One of the great bits about the Cobra Mist building is the lengths the USAF went to in order to prevent eavesdropping by isolating even electrical wiring inside the building into metal lined voids.. its certainly is an interesting place to walk around inside... even some of the doors had gold/copper plates for extra security...
 

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One of the great bits about the Cobra Mist building is the lengths the USAF went to in order to prevent eavesdropping by isolating even electrical wiring inside the building into metal lined voids.. its certainly is an interesting place to walk around inside... even some of the doors had gold/copper plates for extra security...
My guess is that the metal linings are a Faraday cage or similar arrangement, just like you find in hospitals with an MRI scanner. The cage is designed to keep magnetic fields and pulses either inside or outside the cage, as the case may be…
 
Strangely I'm. Off near there with the girlfriend tommorow for the weekend, can't imagine I'll have much time for exploring though
You'll need a day! But mate, if you can well worth it! Also pop down to Rendlesham forest while you're there and see the metal UFO in the woodland that stands there in memory of the UK's most famous UFO landing that happened in the 80's.
 
And Bawdsey, which as well as the old RAF station, and tank traps on the estuary, has just before the village a turn off to the left which leads to a massive concrete bunker. You'll need wellies though and if the tide is high, it's too deep to thoroughly explore. I have no photos of it to hand, I'm afraid, not sure where they went, but they were taken before I went digital.
 
And Bawdsey, which as well as the old RAF station, and tank traps on the estuary, has just before the village a turn off to the left which leads to a massive concrete bunker. You'll need wellies though and if the tide is high, it's too deep to thoroughly explore. I have no photos of it to hand, I'm afraid, not sure where they went, but they were taken before I went digital.
Nice chance for a revisit for you then
 
Not sure I can get around there now, with a walker. Alas, Anno Domini and a dose of Long Covid messed with my mobility. Still, getting over Long Covid slowly. So, maybe... with a bit of help.
 
And Bawdsey, which as well as the old RAF station, and tank traps on the estuary, has just before the village a turn off to the left which leads to a massive concrete bunker. You'll need wellies though and if the tide is high, it's too deep to thoroughly explore. I have no photos of it to hand, I'm afraid, not sure where they went, but they were taken before I went digital.
Do you mean this beasty? --> Google Maps
 
Most of that bunker at the wall in Bawdsey is flooded these days which is a shame. It's also full of nesting birds that will fly at you if you go in!
 
Most of that bunker at the wall in Bawdsey is flooded these days which is a shame. It's also full of nesting birds that will fly at you if you go in!
It doesn't surprise me. Last time I was there we were half considering it as a good venue for Dungeons and Dragons or Shadowrun sessions. Still, good luck to the birds, at least someone can use it!
 
Awesome pics, excellent report. What an interesting site.
 
Enjoyed your report greatly. Thank you. The massive Cold War blockhouse was initially the site of the AN/FPS-95 OTH - Over the Horizon - radar. Construction began in '67, completed in '71 and shut down not long after due to strange interference. Jamming as the source was not ruled out.
BBC then took over in 1978, putting a half million watt transmitter on the air on 648 KHZ.

Today it's Radio Caroline, same freq, at 50 KW.
Love all the photos especially your intrepid canine explorer.


Paul Vincent Zecchino
Manasota Key, FL, USA
07 AUG '23
 
My guess is that the metal linings are a Faraday cage or similar arrangement, just like you find in hospitals with an MRI scanner. The cage is designed to keep magnetic fields and pulses either inside or outside the cage, as the case may be…
The screening was likely to prevent local interference from the transmitting equipment to the highly sensitive receivers used. Other OTH installations tend to separate the transmission and reception sites - often by several miles - for the same reason, as in the Russian Duga1.
 

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