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The two most pictured buildings on the AWRE site are laboratories four and five, known locally as the Pagodas. These were built in 1966 to test the WE177 bombs, and possibly the Polaris warheads. There were high vacuum facilities on the Ness and the only reason for those would be to test something which would be subjected to the vacuum of space, like a re-entry body for a missile warhead.


This we177 has been subjected to some stress, being projected into concrete blocks at some speed. A rocket sled was used to test munitions agains a concrete structure here.


This is a later Chevaline carrier pack unit on top of a Polaris rocket, showing the two A3E Polaris warheads in their re-entry bodies. This was in effect a small space vehicle with a number of chaff and decoy dispensers to confuse the Soviet ABM system.


There are a number of legends about these buildings. For example, the heavy roof is not designed to collapse, as has been commonly suggested. The legs are hugely reinforced, note the picture of construction taking place.
The two labs are identical and in line, both have lorry access which faces out to sea. How convenient for those Russian trawlers often found offshore! This is lab 4.


Inside the actual test chamber.





Those people are standing in the test chamber, where the bomb under test was put in a special rig, slung from those very substantial slotted plates in the walls and floor. Above is the famous roof on its columns.


Building in progress.


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Next page:- COBRA MIST.