Murphy Dome, Clear, Eielson AFB & Battery B

This is a group of pictures that shows the Air Force facility at Murphy Dome, Eielson AFB, Clear and Battery B.  Murphy Dome was run by the USAF and was the long range eyes for the Fairbanks Nike Sites. Clear also was a USAF facility one of 3 BEMEWS sites constructed about the same time as the Nike Sites became operational. Rumor has it that operations began in the Clear area when a small dirt landing strip was constructed alongside the Alaska Railroad track in World War II to aid pilots ferrying P-39 and P-63 fighter planes to Russia.  In 1957 after the Soviet launch of Sputnik I the US could no longer ignore the ICBM threat. In 1959 a 10x40 mile strip of wilderness at Clear was appropriated to become Site II of the BEMEWS system Site one was already under construction at Thule Greenland and Site III would soon follow in England. Clear became operational in late 1961 with a final price tag of $ 360 Million. Clear has gone through many upgrades and in 2001 its operation was turned over to the Alaska Air National Guard.    Battery B hosted the annual live firings for the Fairbanks Batteries each year all sites would actually fire a missile for training. Our target would be a actual USAF Fighter plane but the tracking radars were offset by 180 degrees. Which means that you would look at a target at 12 O'clock and shot at the same spot at 6 O'clock. Data from the IFC computer was then compared with the actual flight path of the Air Force Fighter to then determine a hit or miss.

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