RRH Benbecula

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RRH Benbecula
Air Force Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg
Near Lochmaddy, Outer Hebrides in Scotland
RRH Benbecula is located in Outer Hebrides
RRH Benbecula
RRH Benbecula
Shown within the Outer Hebrides
Coordinates Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Type Remote Radar Head - Type 92
(Air Defence Solid State Radar)
Site information
Owner Ministry of Defence
Operator Royal Air Force
Maximum range 600km (375 Miles)
Site history
Built 1980 (1980)
In use 1980-Present
Airfield information
Elevation 127 metres (417 ft) AMSL
Direction Length and surface
00/00  Asphalt

RRH Benbecula is a Remote Radar Head operated by the Royal Air Force in the Western Isles of Scotland.[1]


RRH Benbecula operates a Type 92 long range surveillance radar,[1] at Cleitreabhal a'Deas (NF750716) on North Uist. The radar, designed and built by Lockheed Martin is almost identical to the AN/FPS-117 radar used by the USA. Whilst versions of the AN/FPS-117 are capable of detecting ballistic missiles the Type 92 does have this capability but is only used for detecting aircraft.[citation needed] A separate receiver site is situated at Benbecula Airport,[citation needed] on the Isle of Benbecula. They input into the UK Air Surveillance And Control System (ASACS). The radar site also accommodates several types of VHF and UHF ground-to-air transmitters.

A Remote Radar Head is a radar station which is monitored and controlled from a remote location. Formerly under the command and control of RAF Buchan, RRH Benbecula came under the command and control of RAF Boulmer in September 2004.[1] RRH Benbecula's equipment is still maintained by RAF technicians.


Military personnel have had a presence on the islands, once called RAF Benbecula, since the Second World War. At its peak, several thousand troops were stationed at the base and several other sites around the islands.

The following units were based at the airfield at some point:

After the Second World War, the aircraft were withdrawn. The RAF continued operating from Benbecula, operating several radar types until the Type 92 came into service in the 1980s. The radar site was a manned radar station and a Control and Reporting Post for UK Air Surveillance, until it was converted to remote operation in the late nineties and the RAF pulled out of the main site at Benbecula.

The British Army also had a huge presence at Benbecula, operating an artillery range on South Uist. This role was passed to the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (eventually to become QinetiQ), who remain at the Benbecula and South Uist sites.

See also



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "RAF Boulmer". Royal Air Force. Retrieved 22 August 2009.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Jefford 1988, p. 37.
  3. Jefford 1988, p. 65.
  4. Jefford 1988, p. 69.
  5. Jefford 1988, p. 72.
  6. Jefford 1988, p. 85.
  7. Jefford 1988, p. 93.


  • Jefford, C.G, MBE, BA, RAF (Retd). RAF Squadrons, a Comprehensive Record of the Movement and Equipment of all RAF Squadrons and their Antecedents since 1912. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 1988. ISBN 1-84037-141-2.

External links