Belgium: Air Bases and Military Airfields

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
Cold War Airfields, by Bert Kondruss

Military airfields in Belgium (19)
Beauvechain: Air Base
Bertrix Jehonville: Airfield
Brasschaat: Airfield
Brussels: Airport
Casteau: SHAPE Pad
Chièvres: Air Base
Elsenborn: Airfield
Florennes: Air Base
Goetsenhoven: Airfield
Kleine Brogel: Air Base
Koksijde: Air Base
Kortrijk: Airfield
Liège Bierset: Airfield
St. Hubert: Airfield
St. Truiden: Airfield
Ursel: Airfield
Weelde: Airfield
Zoersel: Airfield
Zutendaal: Air Base

Short History

After WW II, Belgium was co-founder of the Western Defense Union (1946, precursor of NATO) and of NATO (1949). Within these organizations Belgium committed itself to build 15 airbases, partly for its own use and partly to provide facilities for allied forces in case of war.

The bases to be used by the Belgian Air Force (8) were: Beauvechain, Brustem, Florennes, Chievres, Koksijde and Melsbroek (all ex-Luftwaffe fields), together with 2 brand new bases: Kleine-Brogel and Bierset (Liege). The so-called reserve bases (6) are: Zutendaal, Weelde, Zoersel-Oostmalle, Ursel, Bertrix and Saint-Hubert. Intended for deployments of both BAF units and allied units.

All airfields were extended (existing bases) or newly built to NATO standards between 1950 and 1955. Runway length tobe 2400 meter with preference for an emergency parallel runway (23 meter width) of also 2400 meter. NATO minimum for the back-up runway was 2000 meter. Airfields with an existing cross runway (Chievres, Koksijde, Melsbroek) did have indeed a secondary runway of 2000 meter.

Later, between 1958 and 1961, the main runways of all bases were lengthened to 10.000 ft class (3000+ meter) with the addition of so called overruns. These overruns could be used for additional takeoff distance but in practice they were mainly used as stopway in case of emergency, when using an emergency brake system like a cable arresting gear and a net arresting system. Both type of systems were(are) used by the Belgian Air Force on active bases.

The 15th airfield was canceled before being built. It was planned at Sart-les-Saint-Vith (North of the city of Saint-Vith in the Ardennes area). But later another 15th airbase Kitona airbase was built (1957-1960) in Congo (present Democratic Republic of Congo) to house a fleet of Neptunes anti-submarine warplanes. But the sudden independence of Congo in 1960 prevented the actual use of the airbase.

(Text courtesy of Jean-Pierre Pulinx, thanks a lot!)

Beauvechain: Air Base

Base aérienne de Beauvechain

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN504526 E0044560 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 363 ft
Location indicatorEBBE

Runways

Data for the year 1990:
  • 04L/22R: 3074 m x 45 m Asphalt/Concrete
  • 04R/22L: 2377 m x 22 m

Radio beacons

Data for the year 1990:
  • TACAN: CH107 "BBE", am Platz

Bertrix Jehonville: Airfield

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN495330 E0051340 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 1514 ft
Location indicatorEBBX

Use today

Reserve airfield.

Runways

Data for the year 1990:
  • 06/24: 2400 m x 45 m Concrete

Links

Airfields in the vicinity

Brasschaat: Airfield

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN512040 E0043009 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 76 ft
Location indicatorEBAT

Usage during the Cold War

Beglian army aviation airfield.

Brussels: Airport

National, Zaventem, Melsbroek, Luchthaven Brussel-Nationaal, Aéroport Bruxelles-National

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN505358 E0042923 (WGS84) Google Maps
Location indicatorEBBR, EBMB

Usage during the Cold War

Airport with military use.

Runways

Data for the year 1990:
  • 02/20: 2984 m x 50 m Concrete/Asphalt
  • 07L/25R: 3638 m x 45 m Asphalt
  • 07R/25L: 3211 m x 45 m Concrete/Asphalt

Links

Casteau: SHAPE Pad

Mons

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN503011 E0035857 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 299 ft
Location indicatorEBCH

Usage during the Cold War

Military Helipad.

Airfields in the vicinity

Chièvres: Air Base

Base aérienne de Chièvres

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN503436 E0035019 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 201 ft
Location indicatorEBCV

Runways

Data for the year 1990:
  • 08/26: 2497 m x 50 m Asphalt/Concrete
  • 02/20 closed

Radio beacons

Data for the year 1990:
  • TACAN: CH79 "CIV", at field
  • VOR: 113.2 "CIV", at field
  • ILS26: 108.55 "ICV"

Airfields in the vicinity

Elsenborn: Airfield

Butgenbach, Bütgenbach, Rauhe Knipp

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN502905 E0061059 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 1830 ft

Location

Airfields in the vicinity

Florennes: Air Base

Base aérienne de Florennes

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN501426 E0043849 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 935 ft
Location indicatorEBFS

Runways

Data for the year 1990:
  • 08/26: 3384 m x 45 m Asphalt
  • 08R/26L: 1800 m x 50 m closed

Radio beacons

Data for the year 1990:
  • TACAN: CH52 "BFS", at field
  • ILS26: 108.35 "IBFS"

Links

Goetsenhoven: Airfield

Gossoncourt, Tienen, Tirlemont

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN504654 E0045728 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 230 ft
Location indicatorEBTN

Runways

Data for the year 1990:

    Radio beacons

    Data for the year 1978:
    • NDB: 212 "TN", at field

    Kleine Brogel: Air Base

    Vliegbasis Kleine-Brogel, Base aérienne de Kleine-Brogel

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN511006 E0052810 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 199 ft
    Location indicatorEBBL

    Usage during the Cold War

    Belgian Airforce airbase.

    Use today

    Belgian Airforce airbase.

    Runways

    Data for the year 1990:
    • 05/23: 3096 m x 45 m Asphalt

    Radio beacons

    Data for the year 1990:
    • NDB: 448.5 "ONT", 231° 3.5NM to field
    • TACAN: CH35 "BBL", at field

    Koksijde: Air Base

    Vliegbasis Koksijde

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN510522 E0023923 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 20 ft
    Location indicatorEBFN

    Runways

    Data for the year 1990:
    • 02/20: 2016 m x 52 m Asphalt
    • 11/29: 2678 m x 50 m Asphalt/Concrete

    Radio beacons

    Data for the year 1978:
    • NDB: 325.5 "KOK"
    • VORTAC: 114.5 CH92 "KOK"
    Data for the year 1990:
    • DVOR: 114.5 "KOK", at field
    • TACAN: CH92 "KOK", at field

    Links

    Kortrijk: Airfield

    Luchthaven Kortrijk-Wevelgem

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN504906 E0031228 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Location indicatorEBKT

    Usage during the Cold War

    Airfield of the Belgian Air Force until the 1960s.

    Liège Bierset: Airfield

    Base aérienne de Bierset, Aéroport de Liège

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN503817 E0052643 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 658 ft
    Location indicatorEBLH, EBLG

    Runways

    Data for the year 1990:
    • 05R/23L: 3286 m x 45 m Asphalt/Beton
    • 05L/23R: 2272 m x 23 m primary use as TWY
    • 05/23 Gras emergency

    Radio beacons

    Data for the year 1990:
    • TACAN: CH31 "BLG"
    • ILS23L: 110.5 "ILG"
    • LOM23L: 290 "ONL"
    • LMM23L: 348.5 "LG"

    St. Hubert: Airfield

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN500201 E0052617 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 1930 ft
    Location indicatorEBSU

    Runways

    • 07/25: 2600 m x 45 m

    Airfields in the vicinity

    St. Truiden: Airfield

    Bevingen, Sint Truiden, Brustem, Vliegbasis Sint-Truiden

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN504717 E0051133 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 246 ft
    Location indicatorEBST

    Runways

    Data for the year 1973:
    • 06/24: 2368 m x 50 m
    • 10/28: 1435 m x 20 m
    Data for the year 1990:
    • 06/24: 2993 m x 50 m Asphalt

    Radio beacons

    Data for the year 1990:
    • NDB: 510 "ST", 068° 1.4NM to field
    • TACAN: CH33 "BVG", at field

    Ursel: Airfield

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN510839 E0032827 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 95 ft
    Location indicatorEBUL

    Runways

    • 07/25: 2430 m x 45 m Concrete

    Links

    Weelde: Airfield

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN512342 E0045736 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 105 ft
    Location indicatorEBWE

    Usage during the Cold War

    Reserve airfield.

    Runways

    • 07/25: 2980 m x 45 m Concrete

    Links

    Zoersel: Airfield

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN511553 E0044517 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 53 ft
    Location indicatorEBZR

    Usage during the Cold War

    Reserve airfield.

    Runways

    • 05/23: 2980 m x 45 m Concrete

    Zutendaal: Air Base

    Vliegbasis Zutendaal

    For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
    CoordinatesN505656 E0053531 (WGS84) Google Maps
    Elevation 312 ft
    Location indicatorEBSL

    Usage during the Cold War

    Reserve airfield

    Use today

    Military Storage Site

    Runways

    • 06/24: 2980 m x 45 m Asphalt

    Related Topics

    Eureka Beacons in Belgium
    Air Bases Germany
    Air Bases Netherlands
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