/javascript" src="static/js/analytics.js"> Area 51 and UFO Tests


Edwards Air Force Base; Muroc Dry Lake Bed, California
Disks tested in the presence of Astronauts and Presidents?

Celebrities and UFO's

Until recently the very existence of the once fabled Area 51 at Nellis Air Force Base, was denied by the U.S. Government.

The area, eighty miles north-east of Las Vegas in the Nevada Dessert, was originally named 'Watertown' Strip, not surprisingly the hometown of CIA chief Allan Dulles.

Area 51, 'Dream Land', or 'Paradise Ranch' (as contractors knew it), has been used by engineers to develop dazzling flying machines since late 1955.

It was then that contractors completed their work in the unforgiving dessert conditions so that the USAF could test the Lockheed U2 spy plane.

The adjacent AEC proving grounds had apparently been used for much advanced technology testing prior to this.

Below: A bus similar to those which transport staff around the Groom Lake facility

The area was transformed from a more ordinary military installation to a vastly technologically advanced research and development facility in 1951.

During this refurbishment parts of existing runways were dug up an underground facilities constructed before the tarmacs were re-laid. It was at this time that stories of testing of recovered alien aircraft began.

These were accompanied by whisperings of special habitats being created to house captured alien beings.

The AEC testing area became known as the Nevada Test Site and divided into such numbered areas as S-4, 10 miles to the south of Area 51.

The name 'Area 51' was designated by the Atomic Energies Commission (AEC) in June 1958 before being officially dropped in 1970.

Above: Satellite photograph of Area 51, Groom Lake and the Nellis Air Force base, 1968. The main runway (14/32) can be seen running across the lake bed.


Aircraft confirmed to have been tested in Nevada also include the F-117 Stealth Fighter, Northrop's B-2 Stealth Bomber , SR-71 Recon spy plane and the SR-71 Blackbird

Below: the SR71b

Aircraft confirmed to have been tested in Nevada also include the F-117 Stealth Fighter, Northrop's B-2 Stealth Bomber , SR-71 Recon spy plane and the SR-71 Blackbird.

The Blackbird's existence was denied for many years but it is still being used today and is the highest and fastest aircraft the USAF possess.

The dry lake bed area was chosen as a testing sight by a consortium comprising test pilot Tony Levier, Dorsey Kammerer, engineer and foreman of Skunkworks (Lockheed's advanced technology division), and aircraft designer Kelly Johnson.

Johnson and Levier needed the best possible place to test the U-2 and after visiting sites in several dessert states, the Groom Lake area was recommended to the CIA by the group via Johnson.

In the late 1970's testing of several exotic aircraft in the restricted area led to the adoption of the name 'Dreamland'.

These projects included the Have Blue and Tacit Blue stealth technology demonstrations to research lowest possible levels of radar return.

The secrecy of these tests brought extreme security measures.

In the 1980's the Groom Lake base was considerably expanded.

The main runway was extended to the south and then a huge northerly extension was built out onto Groom Lake.

Below: Aircraft leaving McRann AFB shuttle workers to Groom Lake

Today the runway has a length of 27,000 feet with a similar parallel runway established in the 1990's.

Area 51 is said to have the world's longest runway.

The air force took delivery of its first F-117 stealth fighters in 1982.

It proved to be a star performer with advanced radar camouflage. This is mainly attributed to both the metals and the paint used to minimise radar return.

The aircrafts design is based on stringent diamond shapes which also make the plane radar invisible. While the stealth followed programmed commands to fly at optimum radar avoidance altitude, the pilot could concentrate wholly on accurate bombing.

It was much easier for the enthusiast to view 'Dreamland' before 1984.

To the north of the lake bed' Bald Mountain was the most popular vantage point.

The military purchased this land however leaving a lesser view from Whitesides Peak and Freedom Ridge.

These were annexed by the authorities in 1995.

Below: Taken on January 11, 1994 over the hills south of Groom Lake.

The secured area around the base is not fence but clearly marked with large white signs. These commonly contain the phrase, 'Use of Deadly Force Authorized'.

The signs cite federal regulation #795. The area  is protected by a security force with extremely high capabilities of detecting trespassers. 

The term 'cammo dudes' has become the name for the mysterious guards within the UFO world. They are usually spotted in unmarked white Cherokee recreational vehicles and regularly approach likely trespassers to warn them off.

Since 1990 the entire base has been rebuilt accommodating up to 2000 people and a large recreational facility has been developed.

Staff not housed at the base are taken on daily flights from a guarded terminal at Mcrann airport owned by EG&G.

About 500 people are flown daily on the small fle et of  Boeing 737-200's.

They fly north every half hour with the call sign suffixed by 'Janet', and the staff are ferried to their offices in buses with blacked out windows.

Below: A Robot camera secures the perimeter of Area 51.