Stuttgart: Airport, Army Airfield

Echterdingen AAF

Contents
Page 1: From the beginnings to the 1990s
Page 2: Current pictures
For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
Cold War Airfields: Stuttgart
by Bert Kondruss
Coordinates: N484123 E0091320 (WGS84) Google Maps
Location Indicator: DDSG (195x), EDDS (civ), EDAT (USAF), EDOC (US Army), ETOC

Location

Map with location of Stuttgart Echterdingen airport
Germany during the Cold War
Map

General

The first aviation use of the area near Echterdingen was the unplanned landing of the airship LZ4 in 1908. In the 1930s the Echterdingen airport was built to replace the existing one at Böblingen. In 1945 the field was occupied by US troops, stationing military aircraft here. In the following years, civil aviation again developed. The military base remained, serving in particular the US EUCOM and the VII. US corps.
Today, Echterdingen is an international airport with a small US base.

German Empire until 1918

First aviation use

On 05 August 1908, the airship LZ4 had to land west of today's airport due to a technical defect. Later that day, the airship was destroyed during a thunderstorm.
In the same year a Zeppelin memorial has been erected at Echterdingen, see current pictures on page 2.

Images

Airship Zeppelin LZ4 after landing near Echterdingen.
Airship Zeppelin LZ4 after landing near Echterdingen. - Title "Prior to the Zeppelin disaster in Echterdingen, 05 August 1908, Hauptmann Bauer asked von Breuning by telephone to call up two companies from the Bergkaserne to reinforce the fastening crew" /LABW 1-116183-1/ (Darstellung wie im Original, ausschließlich zur Berichterstattung über Vorgänge des Zeitgeschehens)

In World War II

Usage

Stuttgart airport and Luftwaffe airfield.

Situation

Map with Stuttgart airport in World War II
Stuttgart Airport, Army Airfield in World War II on a US map from 1944 - (McMaster University Library Digital Archive, License: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 CC BY-NC 2.5 CA /MULDA/)

Overview

Stuttgart Airport Map 1951
Stuttgart Airport on a US map from 1951 - (AMS M841 GSGS 4414, Courtesy Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University /BYU/)

Images

Swissair DC-2 HB-ISI destroyed in Stuttgart Echterdingen 1944
Swissair Douglas DC-2-115-D HB-ISI in Stuttgart-Echterdingen, destroyed by an air strike of the Allies (09 August 1944) - /ETH/

During the Cold War

In the 1940s

Situation

Approach chart Stuttgart Echterdingen airfield from August 1948
Approach chart from August 1948. The Stuttgart Range radio beacon was not located on the extended centerline.

Overview

Stuttgart airfield map from 1948
Map of Stuttgart airfield from 1948 - The airfield was stiill oriented at the old take-off pads. Hence the runway had a length of 1423 m (4670 ft) only.

Runways

  • 08/26: 1423 m

Radio beacons

  • Range: 310 "SG"

Radio communication

  • Tower 6440, 126.18

In the 1950s

Situation

Approach map Echterdingen 1951
Compared to the state of August 1948 (above), two radio beacons DSG and SG have been added for the approach from the east. - In addition, the frequencies of the range and the control tower have changed.

Overview

Stuttgart Echterdingen airport map 1951
Karte des Flughafens Stuttgart aus dem Jahr 1951
Map of Stuttgart airport from 1953
Map of Stuttgart airport from 1953 - The runway has been extended to 1800 m (5906 ft)

Runways

  • 08/26: 1800 m (5906 ft) x 50 m (166 ft) Concrete
  • 08/26: 900 m (2953 ft) x 46 m (150 ft) Grass
  • 15/33: 440 m (1444 ft) x 30 m (100 ft) Grass
South of the main runway was a practice area for military helicopters.

Lights

Rotating aerodrome light white
Identification beacon white/green
Approach Lights 26: Simplified Calvert system (580 m) with 4 crossbars.

Radio beacons

  • NDB (OM): 422 "DLG", 258°/4.55 NM
  • LMM: 306 "SG", 258°/0.64 NM
  • VOR: 112.3 "DDG", 257°/9.75 NM
  • ILS 26: 109.9 "DLG"

Radio communication

  • HF for Approach and Tower 3023.5
  • Stuttgart Approach 126.7, 362.3, 243.0
  • Stuttgart Tower 118.1, 122.7, 362.3, 243.0
  • Stuttgart Taxi 121.9
A VHF direction finder was located ca. 1000 m in front of the threshold 26.

Telephone

79551 - 79555

In the 1960s

Overview

Map of Stuttgart airport in 1960
The airport in 1960 - The two grass runways in the north were already put to operation in the 1950s
Map of Stuttgart Echterdingen Army Airfield in 1960
The airport in 1966 - In the meantime, the main runway has a length of 2550 m (8366 ft)

Runways

  • 08/26: 2550 m (8366 ft) x 50 m (164 ft) Concrete
  • 08/26: 300 m (984 ft) x 30 m (98 ft) Grass

Radio communication

  • Approach 119.2, 119.7, 391.6, 322.3
  • Tower 118.8, 119.7, 391.6, 257.8
  • Ground 121.9
  • Pilot/Dispatcher 360.8
  • Metro 344.6, 140.3
  • SING SONG (IFF/SIF check) 375.9

Images

Picture of Stuttgart Airport in 1966
The civil part of the airport in the north in 1966 - /LABW 5-2040768-1/
Aerial view 1968, looking southeast
Aerial view 1968, looking southeast - /LABW 2-1133052-1/
Stuttgart airport Aerial picture 1968
Enlargement - Highspeed taxiway E is only a stub so far.

In the 1970s

Situation

Map of Stuttgart airspace 1972
Stuttgart Airport / Army Airfield on a map of the US Department of Defense from 1972 - (ONC E-2 (1972), Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection, University of Texas at Austin /PCL MC/)

Radio beacons

  • LOM 26: 306 "SG"
  • LOM 08: 384 "SY"
  • ILS 26

Radio communication

  • ATIS 109.2, 112.5
  • Approach/Radar 125.05, 119.2, 118.6, 119.7, 398.5, 244.3
  • Tower 118.8, 122.7, 119.7, 355.2
  • Ground 121.9
  • Pilot to Dispatcher 360.8
  • Metro 344.6
  • Army Ops 360.8, 33.2

Telephone

Army Ops: Mil 2723-4-201/212/249

In the 1980s and early 1990s

Overview

Aerial picture of Stuttgart Echterdingen airfield in 1988
Aerial picture 1988 - At this time the paved parking spots for helicopters are still missing on the southern side. /LABW 2-1133029-1/
Map of Stuttgart Echterdingen Airport / Army Airfield in 1990
Situation around 1990

Runways

  • 08/26: 2550 m x 50 m Concrete

Radio beacons

  • LOM 26: 306 "SG"
  • MM 26: 75
  • LOM 08: 384 "SY"
  • ILS 26: 109.9 "DLG"

Units

US Army units at Stuttgart Army Airfield ca. 1990:
1st Avn Det: 4 UH-1H, 2 C-12C
2nd MIB: 6 RC-12D, 8 OV-1D Mohawk, 7 RV-1D Mohawk
4th Battalion, 159th Aviation Regiment (4-159 Avn): 30 UH-1H, 15 OH-58D, 1 C-12C, 1 U-21A

Additional information

Reconnaissance flights along the inner German border

For the VII. US corps, reconnaissance aircraft of the types OV-1D Mohawk, RV-1D Mohawk and later RC-12D Guardrail were stationed in Stuttgart. They were parked in a separate fenced-in area of the military apron, in the "Hawk Cage". The airplanes flew regularly along the inner-German border as well as along the border with the CSSR, in order to assess the situation on the other side, using various sensors (IR, side-looking radar, ELINT). Typical flight routes are shown on this page: www.fumema.de .
Comparable missions for the V. Corps were flown from Wiesbaden.

Lutrans in Stuttgart

Lutrans was a scheduled military air transport service, which was provided by the German Air Force over the airfields Ahlhorn, Hohn, Köln, Landsberg and Stuttgart across the entire Federal Republic of Germany. It was operated from the mid-1970s until the 1980s with aircraft C-160 Transall.
Routing Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday:
Landsberg - Stuttgart - Cologne - Ahlhorn - Hohn
Hohn - Ahlhorn - Cologne - Stuttgart - Landsberg
Routing Wednesday:
Landsberg - Stuttgart - Cologne - Landsberg
Hohn - Ahlhorn - Cologne - Hohn
The aircraft from Landsberg arrived at Stuttgart at about 1200 local and departed to Cologne at 1245. In the afternoon, the aircraft arrived at about 1545 local an departed 1630.
The station at Stuttgart had 6 ground people and was used for distributions into the area between Freiburg, Kaiserslautern, Saarbrücken, Frankfurt/M, Würzburg und Reutlingen.

Images

German Air Force C-160 Transall and US Air Force C-130 Hercules at Stuttgart Echterdingen
A German Air Force C-160 Transall and a US Air Force C-130 Hercules in Stuttgart during Exercise Reforger 81 - (Source: DoD, Scene Camera Operator: SSGT Bill Thompson)
German Air Force C-160 Transall and USAF C-130 Hercules at Stuttgart
German Air Force C-160 Transall and USAF C-130 Hercules
Danish Air Force C-47 at Stuttgart airfield
Danish Air Force C-47

Aiport extension

Über viele Jahre war die Weidacher Höhe westlich des Flugplatzes ein Hindernis, das den Flugverkehr einschränkte. Starts in Richtung Westen waren im Abfluggewicht begrenzt. Außerdem konnte für Anflüge aus Richtung Westen kein Instrumentenlandesystem betrieben werden. Deshalb begannen Anfang der 1990er Jahre Arbeiten, um die am Flughafen vorbeiführende Autobahn nach Norden zu verlegen. Damit konnte die Start- und Landebahn nach Osten verschoben und verlängert werden.
Aerial picture of Stuttgart airport with moving the motorway north in 1992
In preparation for the extension of the runway, the A8 autobahn is moved north (1992) - /LABW 2-1133025-1/
Stuttgart airfield area view
Enlargement
Aerial picture Stuttgart Airport 1993, motorway
Aerial picture 1993, looking west - In the meantime, the new autobahn is in operation, the old route is still recognizable. Work to shift and extend the runway is in progress. /LABW 2-1133028-1/
Stuttgart Airport aerial picture 1993
Aerial picture 1993 with the new part of the runway under construction - /LABW 2-1133055-1/, /LABW 2-1133056-1/
Continue reading: ➜ Current pictures
Contents
Page 1: From the beginnings to the 1990s
Page 2: Current pictures
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