Ahlhorn: Air Base

RAF Ahlhorn

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN525320 E0081400 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 162 ft
Location indicatorEDNA, ETNA, EDHA
Map with location of Ahlhorn Air Base
Germany during the Cold War Map


In World War I, Ahlhorn was an airship port and in World War II a Luftwaffe airfield. In the 1950s the field was expanded and used by the Royal Air Force. In the late 1950s, Ahlhorn was handed over to the German Luftwaffe, which based here combat, transport and helicopter units through the years. At the end of the 1970er years Ahlhorn became additionally a forward operating location for aircraft A-10 Thunderbolt of the US Air Force. The aviation use ended in the early 1990s. At the end of 2005, the facility was abandoned by the Bundeswehr.

During World War II


Luftwaffe airfield.


Ahlhorn Air Base in World War II on a US map from 1943 (Source: McMaster University Library Digital Archive, Lizenz: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 CC BY-NC 2.5 CA)


Ahlhorn Air Base on a US map from 1951 - The map should represent the expansion of the 1940s with three runways. Noticable is the curved course of the railway siding in the south (AMS M841 GSGS 4414, Courtesy Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University /BYU/)

During the Cold War

RAF Ahlhorn (- 1958)


The Royal Air Force (RAF) used Ahlhorn until 1958.


RAF Ahlhorn on a map from 1956 - The approach areas of the three British airfields Ahlhorn, Oldenburg and Jever are protected by restricted areas. The white "E" in the circle symbolizes the Eureka radio beacon, used by the British at this time. The square around the airport symbol with the "V" underneath shows an VHF direction finder. The black star stands for the coded beacons which is characteristical for British airfields


Red airfield beacon with morse code AN

Radio beacons

  • NDB: 282 "AN", Power 30 W
  • Eureka: 218R, 213T "AN"



Radio communication

  • Approach 130.68, 111.42, 117.9, 121.5, 133.38, 152.1, 111.78
  • Tower 133.38, 111.42, 117.9, 130.68

Airspace and procedures

Operating times Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday from 07:00Z until 16:00Z, Wednesday and Saturday from 07:00Z until 11:00Z

Ahlhorn air base (1958 -)


Ahlhorn Air Base on a map of the US Department of Defense from 1972 - Not shown here are the later built Autobahn A 1 and A 29, which lead past the field in the south and in the west. Thus the Ahlhorn Highway Strip is also missing, which is situated a little further to the north on the A 29 (ONC E-2 (1972), Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection, University of Texas at Austin /PCL MC/)


Map from 1984 - In the west the triangular layout is still visible.


Data for the year 1990:
  • 09/27: 2101 m x 45 m Asphalt/Concrete

Radio beacons

Data for the year 1971:
  • NDB: 290 "AHL"
Data for the year 1990:
  • NDB: 361 "HHN", to RWY 27
  • NDB: 290 "AHL", to RWY 09
  • TACAN: CH17 "AHL"
  • ILS 27: 109.3 "AHL"



Airspace and procedures

HI NDB approach to runway 09 (1973). Source: DoD Flight Information Publication (Terminal) - High Altitude Instrument Approach Procedures Europe and North Africa, effective 16 August 1973 to 13 September 1973


Units 1990:
HTG 64 UH-1D
Det 3, 10th TFW A-10


The following pictures were taken in May 1983, during the exercise CHECKERED FLAG '83. Source: Department of Defense, Scene Camera Operator: TSGT G. Dennis Plummer
Look across the field from east to west
Enlargement: Ladder-shaped parking area in the north
Enlargement: Shelter area in the south
A munitions maintenance specialist pulls an ammunition loader into position for loading the GAU-8/A 30 mm gun of an A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft
Munitions maintenance personnel use an ammunition loader to load the GAU-8/A 30mm gun of an A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft
A member of a munitions maintenance crew loads an AGM-5 Maverick missile onto the wing pylon of an A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft
Maintenance personnel remove the wing tanks from an Air Force Reserve A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft from Barksdale after its arrival
British Army personnel deploy a Class 30 Trackway portable roadway from a Bedford Mark 4 X 4 4-ton truck
A left side view of a British Army AH. Mark 1 Gazelle helicopter hovering a few feet off the ground



General aviation airfield.


Landsat image from 2016 - There are solar modules on both sides of the runway - Open object in Google Maps


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