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Alaska’s controversial HAARP facility closed — will it come back online?

Klint Finley

HAARP

HAARP is down, but rumors of its demise may have been exaggerated:

The shutdown is reported to be only a temporary one, with the facility having been shuttered sometime between late May and mid-June.

“It was a surprise to all of us to hear it was shutting down,” said Dr. Bill Bristow, a professor of electrical engineering at UAF.

Air Force officials are hopeful that the facility would open and resume operations in mid-August. DARPA currently has a sizeable funding bloc allocated for additional ionospheric research in the fall of 2013, so it will likely have to be open for that research.

The shuttering of HAARP has apparently arisen from a contractor regime change. The facility’s operations were previously administered by Kaktovik Inupiat Corp. subsidiary — and 8(a) contractor — Marsh Creek, LLC. Reportedly in talks to take over the contract is regional Alaska Native corporation Ahtna, which oversees the area of Gakona, where HAARP is located.

Neither Marsh Creek nor Ahtna returned requests for comment Wednesday. […]

Though HAARP is continually manned and maintained when operational, there aren’t always experiments being conducted at the facility.

“HAARP doesn’t operate continually,” said Dr. Brenton Watkins, professor emeritus of physics at UAF. “It operates in a ‘campaign’ mode with kind of two-week periods of activity. I’ve been involved in every operational campaign for — I think — the last five years.”

Full Story: Alaska Dispatch:

Previously:

HAARP’s military applications revealed

Real life DHARMA Initiative # 7: DARPA and HAARP

 
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