Thule Air Base
Pituffik, GL 1 (719) 474-3840
Type: Air Force
Thule Air Base/Pituffik Airport (IATA: THU, ICAO: BGTL), is the United States Air Force’s northernmost base, located 1,207 km (750 mi) north of the Arctic Circle and 1,524 km from the North Pole on the northwest side of the island of Greenland.
Thule Air Base is the US Armed Forces’ northernmost installation, located 750 miles north of the Arctic Circle. Thule’s arctic environment includes icebergs in North Star Bay, two islands (Saunders Island and Wolstenholme Island), a polar ice sheet, and Wolstenholme Fjord — the only place on Earth where four active glaciers join together.
Thule Air Base is home to the 21st Space Wing’s global network of sensors providing missile warning, space surveillance and space control to North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and Air Force Space Command (AFSPC).
Thule Air Base is also home to the 821st Air Base Group and is responsible for air base support within the Thule Defense Area for the multinational population of “Team Thule”. The base hosts the 12th Space Warning Squadron (12 SWS) which operates a Ballistic Missile Early Warning System (BMEWS) designed to detect and track ICBMs launched against North America. Thule is also host to Detachment 1 of the 23rd Space Operations Squadron, part of the 50th Space Wing’s global satellite control network. The airfield’s 10,000-foot (3,000 m) runway handles more than 3,000 US and international flights per year. Finally, Thule is home to the northernmost deep water port in the world. Thule is the only Air Force Base with an assigned tugboat. The tugboat is used to assist ship movements in the harbor during the summer and is hauled onto shore during the winter season. The tugboat is also used for daily sightseeing tours of Northstar Bay during the summer. Additionally, for a fee, there is a Danish tour boat that runs in the summer.
Thule Air Base has served as the regional hub for nearby installations, including Cape Atholl (LORAN station), Camp Century (Ice Cap Camp), Camp TUTO (Ice Cap Approach Ramp and Airstrip), Sites 1 and 2 (Ice Cap Radar Stations), P-Mountain (radar and communications site), J-Site (BMEWS), North and South Mountains (research sites), and a research rocket firing site. It also was essential in the construction and resupply of High Arctic weather stations, including CFS Alert (Alert Airport) and Station Nord.
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The numbers for Fairchild Air Force Base have low accuracy due to its unique utilization. Entire companies are rotated through on a regular basis, so large portions of the phone directory are subject to change without notice. Please contact the base operator at (509) 247-1212 if you experience any difficulty reaching your desired contact.