Norwegians, Americans build Arctic satellite station against enemy cruise missiles

By - April 11, 2024 The Independent Barents Observer
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«The establishment of the satellite station at the Andøya Airbase will significantly strengthen Norway’s and NATO’s territory,» Norway’s Defense Minister Bjørn Arild Gram says in a comment.

Bjørn Arild Gram is Norway’s Minister of Defence. Photo: Thomas Nilsen

«In today’s security situation we have to stand together to defend all of NATO,» he underlines.

The station will be located at the far northern island that previously housed Norway’s fleet of P-3 Orion surveillance aircrafts. It is also the site for a new Arctic base long-range drones.

It is the first station of its kind outside the USA, the Norwegian Defense Ministry informs.

«I am very content that the USA chooses Norway as its partner in this exciting project,» Minister Gram says.

The new station will provide Norway and NATO with a new early warning mechanism against cruise missiles in the North. Andøya is located about 800 km west of Severomorsk, the headquarter city of Russia’s Northern Fleet.

 

The Andøya airbase was applied during the Nordic Response 2024 exercise. Photo: Ella Hagen, Forsvaret

 

The far northern island also houses the Andøya Spaceport, a space center that supports the Norwegian military activities.

«The government has a clear ambition that Norway is to be best among its allies on situation awareness in the North. Satellites contribute to overview over developments in our region and Andøya has a unique location when it comes to access to the outer space,» Gram explains.

The announcement about the new satellite station comes as Norway significantly strengthens its armed forces.

A new long-term defence plan outlines a doubling of military spending over the next 12 years. By 2036, the Nordic country is to spend 3 percent of GDP on the military.