Welzow: Air Base

Neu-Welzow, Spremberg Welzow, Аэродром Ней-Вельцов

For historical information only, do not use for navigation or aviation purposes!
CoordinatesN513435 E0140811 (WGS84) Google Maps
Elevation 375 ft
Former East Germany (GDR)District of Cottbus
Federal stateBrandenburg
Location indicatorEDCY
Map with location of Welzow Air Base
Germany during the Cold War Map
The history of the Cold War airfields: Welzow

Location of airfield

2 km west of Welzow.


Welzow was built in the mid-1930s as an airfield for the German Luftwaffe. At the end of the Second World War it was taken over by the Soviet occupation forces and massively expanded in the 1950s. From this time on, the 11th Independent Reconnaissance Air Regiment (11 ОРАП - 11 отдельный разведывательный авиационный полк) was stationed here, which was equipped with different aircraft types over the following years: Il-28R, Yak-27R, Yak-28R/PP, Su-24MR and Su-24MP. After the withdrawal of the Soviet/Russian units at the beginning of the 1990s, the airfield is used for general aviation.
  • Remote dispersal area 4 km northwest
  • Since mid-1970 two parallel runways

During World War II


Luftwaffe air base.


Fliegerhorst Welzow in World War II on a map 1944
Fliegerhorst Welzow in World War II on a US map from 1944
Source: McMaster University Library Digital Archive, License: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 CC BY-NC 2.5 CA


Map of Welzow Fliegerhorst
Welzow air base on a US map from 1952
Source: AMS M841 GSGS 4414, Courtesy Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University

During the Cold War

Usage during the Cold War

Soviet airbase.

In the 1950s


The following map is from a report for the CIA from 1955.
Air base 1955
The Air Base in 1955
Source: CIA
1Dispersal areas: Round concreted hardstands on both sides of the taxiways. Eastern taxiway expanded in front of flight control station.
2Bunkers: Earth bunkers east of Bahnsdorf cemetery in former AA gun emplacement.
3Railroad connection: Supply railroad station is Welzow, the spur track is leading from Welzow railroad station in a curve to the airfield, the track terminates at fuel dump, ramps presumably near dump.
4Barracks: 8 brick barracks between eastern taxiway and new road.
5Lighting facilities:
Searchlights: 2 at southern runway end, 1 at northern runway end, 1 near triangulation point 120.5 in northern extension of runway
Runway lights: White lamps on both sides of runway
Flare path: in northern direction
Revetments: 35 (?) adjacent to round dispersal areas, 3 revetments are entered on sketch
7Electric installation: Connecting pieces for lighting facilities
8Flight control station: New building with tower
9AA gun emplacement North of Bahnsdorf cemetery in northwestern corner of landing field occupied by up to 8 x 84-mm guns
9aNew brick quartering building 35 x 15 meters: Just north of AA guns.
Additional 85-mm and 37-mm AA guns parked in northeastern corner of field, temporarily on apron in front of garage.
10Radio installations
10aPKV-45 direction finding (DF) station: East-southeast of Geisendorf, on triangulation point 157.6 (see plane table sheet No 4351).
10bInner low frequency approach beacon: In northeastern extension of runway, near triangulation point 120.5.
10cOuter low frequency approach beacon: South of Geisendorf, on triangulation point 135.5 (see plane table sheet No 4351)
10dKniferest and Fishnet radar: On landing field northwest of northern end of runway.
-2-mast radio installation: About 200 meters southwest of Rosendorf, west of triangulation point 107.6, southwest of airfield.
11Garage: New building with apron surrounded by board fence.
12Hangars: 2 northeast of flight control station, each about 60 x 35 meters, pin-point location not determined.
13Firing and zeroing-in stand Branch off southwest of taxiway and leading into "Weisser Berg" most part of which was leveled.
14aBrick building housing kitchen.
14bNew building with officers' club.
14cU-shaped new building, probably planned to house officers' club.
15Compensating base: Planned instead of round parking area.
16Storehouse New building storing rations, clothing and material.
17Ammunition dump: In northern corner of airfield; surrounded by double fence; searchlights on wooden poles 30 meters apart; 3 to 5 bunker-like buildings.
18New building: Type and utilization unknown.
19Taxiways: 18.25 (?) m wide, 20 cm thick.
20Runway: Extending from south-southwest to north-northeast, 2.500 meters long, 80 meters wide, 20 to 25 cm thick.
21Underground fuel dump: South of flight control station; 48 containers, each holding 25,000 liters arranged in pairs
Old fuel dump in northern section of field, pin-point location unknown, probably not in operation
22Quartering buildings
22a, 22b7 new barracks
22c6 old barracks: repaired.
22d12 to 15 brick buildings: New 3-story barracks with gable roof, each 40 x 12-14 meters, some of them still under construction.
23Guardhouse: At northeastern entrance.
24Watchtowers: In northwestern corner and near barracks buildings.


Units in 1954
One Soviet bomber regiment
Source: BND/Bundesarchiv B 206/3033


  • July 1954
    Relocation of the Reconnaissance Regiment (MiG-15) Welzow (Post box number of the technical unit: FN 78 633) to Köthen Air Base.

In the 1960s


Welzow Air Base, Germany, on a US satellite image 1965
Welzow Air Base on a US satellite image from 04 October 1965 - 1: Airfield; 2: Barracks; 3: Ammunition depot; 4: Taxiway to the remote dispersal area; 5: Remote dispersal northeast of Dörrwalde; 6: Inner radio beacon; a: Main road 169; b: Cottbus - Großenhain railway line; c: disused railway section between Bahnsdorf and Sedlitz; d: new railway line to bypass the opencast mine; e: main road 156 and railway line to Knappenrode; f: object new or under construction, presumably in connection with the opencast lignite mine; no longer in existence today, northern shore of lake Sedlitzer See; g: Opencast mine, today lake Sedlitzer See. Places: Allmosen, Bahnsdorf, Lieske, Sornoer Buden, Welzow.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Air base
Soviet airfield
The airfield - The movement area of the former Fliegerhorst is still recognizable as open space in the north. In the middle of the left are the houses of the Lindenhof settlement. There are 40 Il-28 aircraft on the field, probably the Il-28R reconnaissance variant. Two of them are probably out of service. In addition, 2 transport aircraft Li-2 are recognizable.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Old movement area and ammunition dump
Old movement area and ammunition dump
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Barracks, railway spure, Welzow airfield, Germany
Barracks - From the bottom right, the railway spur leads to the site.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Flight line
Northern part of the flight line
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Southwestern part
Southwestern part - At the bottom left is the Weißer Berg hill.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Flight line and depot
Southern part with flight line, depot and aircraft revetments
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Welzow Ammunition dump
Ammunition dump in the north
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Object in the northwest
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
radar site
Suspected radar site
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Circle - Purpose?
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Aircraft revetments
Aircraft revetments
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Airplane Li-2 at Welzow, Germany
At (1) there's a bigger plane, probably a Li-2.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Planes Il-28, helicopter.
6 planes Il-28. (1) could be a helicopter. At (2) the siding crosses the taxiway.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Li-2 on flightline
Next to multiple Il-28, there is another Li-2 at the northern end of the flightline (1)
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
At (1) there are two more Il-28, presumably discarded.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Flightline with Il-28
Flightline with Il-28
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Southern part
Southern part
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Storage area
Storage area
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Remote dispersal
Northwestern corner of Welzow air base
Northwestern corner of the air base - The taxiway leads out of the airfield area (below right), crosses the railway line Cottbus - Großenhain at ground level (middle of picture) and then bends approximately to the west (top left). From here it is about 2.8 km to the decentralization area.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Main road F196 near Welzow
Crossing with main road F169 in the area between Lindchen and Allmosen
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Welzow Soviet Air Base: Dispersal area
Overview - The dispersal has 20 prepared aircraft parkings. The two paths on the left side of the picture lead to Dörrwalde
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Northeastern part
Northeastern part - The branch to the north is about 250 m long.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Western part
Western part - The western branch is about 800 m long.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Inner radio beacon
Inner radio beacon
Inner radio beacon (Middle Marker), about 830 m to the northeast of the runway threshold. - 1: radio beacon; a: northwestern foothills of Welzow; b: railway line comming from Neupetershain and running north through Welzow; c: Railway line coming from Neupetershain and passing Welzow to the south and from which the connecting track to the airfield leaves.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Sedlitz open-pit mining
Südlich vom Flugplatz Welzow wurde im Tagebau Sedlitz bis Ende der 1970er Jahre Braunkohle gefördert. Auch wenn der Tagebau nicht unmittelbar mit dem Flugplatz in Verbindung steht, so werden nachfolgend Satellitenbilder der Landschaft gezeigt, die später grundlegend verändert wurde und heute den Sedlitzer See bildet.
Sedlitz open-pit mine, Lieske, Rosendorf, Sorno
Area of today's lake Sedlitz - 1: Aerodrome; a, b: open-pit mine. Places Lieske, Rosendorf, Sorno.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Rosendorf, Niederlausitz, 1965
Rosendorf (sorbian Zasrjew) in Niederlausitz (Lower Lusatia) on 04 October 1965 - Later the place had to give way to open-pit mining and was demolished (devastated). On the lower right the Oberer Landgraben creek can be seen. The radio station from 1955 mentioned above must have been in the area of (1). Today lake Sedlitzer See.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Sorno (Wendisch Sorno), Niederlausitz, 1965
Sorno (previously Wendisch Sorno, sorbian Žarnow) on 04 October 1965 - This village, too, was later demolished for the open-pit lignite mining, which can already be seen on the left and bottom right of this picture. Today Lake Sedlitz.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey

In the 1970s


Aerodrome Welzow on a map 1972
Welzow Air Base on a map of the US Department of Defense from 1972
Source: ONC E-2 (1972), Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection, University of Texas at Austin


Welzow 1979
16 May 1979 - 1: Airfield, now with two parallel runways; 2: taxiway; 3: remote dispersal area; 4: inner radio beacon (new); 5: outer radio beacon south of Geisendorf; 6: There are two parallel lanes from the airfield to the outer radio beacon; a: Meanwhile, the Sedlitz open-pit mine has reached its maximum extent and is about to be closed.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey
Second runway
In the mid-1970s, a second runway has been, which runs parallel on the west side to the existing runway.
Source: U.S. Geological Survey

Radio communication

Call sign: ANGARKA (1970?)


Yak-28 Brewer D/E Welzow, Germany
Yak-28 Brewer D/E from Welzow
Source: USMLM Unit History (1977)

In the 1980s and early 1990s


  • 04/22: 2500 m x 42 m
  • 04/22: 2500 m x 60 m old runway

Radio beacons

  • LOM 22: 285 "OP"
  • LMM 22: 588 "O"
  • LOM 04: 285 "NÜ"
  • LMM 04: 588 "N"

Radio communication

Call sign: DUBRAVKA (ДУБРОВКА) (198x)


1990: 11 ORAP (Su-24MR, Su-24MP)


The airfield covered an area of 525 ha



General aviation (EDCY).




  • Ries, Karl; Dierich, Wolfgang: "Fliegerhorste und Einsatzhäfen der Luftwaffe" Motorbuch Verlag Stuttgart, 1993 - Alliierte Planskizze
  • Freundt, Lutz (Hrsg.), Büttner, Stefan: "Rote Plätze - Russische Militärflugplätze in Deutschland 1945 - 1994" AeroLit Verlag, 2007 - Beschreibung, Bilder, Luftbilder 1953 und 1991


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