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This is the cover page of a mimeographed pamphlet that the Station Chief handed to each new DYE 4 arrival. The illustration is a well drawn depiction of the site. DYE 4 was the only station at which I served that offered an orientation like this, or any orientation, actually.

Dye 4 Welcome Script

Text of the pamphlet

Retyped and presented in PDF format

* * * * * *

The last page of the orientation pamphlet shows the juxtaposition, to the station, of facilities described in the brochure.

During my first week at DYE 4, I walked outside with my camera and tripod to take pictures like this. The view is west, beyond Angmassalik Sound, toward the icecap, and showing Greenland's largest mountain range. The tunnel leading from the station to the Radio Terminal Building (RTB) is behind me.
Welcome to Kap Dan! Natives and Danes await supplies and passengers outside the terminal building along the Kulusuk Island airport runway.
The runway itself bearing the Fairchild F27 that brought me from DYE 3, via Sondestrom Air Force base, to Kulusuk Island on Greenland’s east coast in 1976.
 
A view from above the station looking east & beyond, toward Iceland.
The radome tower rises just beyond the exhaust systems for the power plant.
A view of the station at the base of the radome tower. Two station trucks are parked outside the lone loading dock. Beyond is the main fuel tank and on the rise in the distance, ground-to-air radio antennae.
The ground-to-air radio antennae and shack containing the radio transmitter gear. Just beyond this rise was a nearby respite from the drone of site generators where the only sounds were the distant, slow-motion crashing of waves far below and the rare muffled roar of a commercial airliner far above.
The RTB held gigantic capacitors, called Klystrons, plus big transformers & other gear that created and boosted a communications signal east & west through four, huge, tropospheric scatter antennae. I vaguely recall seeing the inside of this building once, even though my security clearance didn’t permit it. Note the RTF building tunnel, to the left, which permitted access to the facility regardless of the wind and weather, which could be fierce. Regarding security, visitation to various sections of each station were driven by strict ‘right to know’ imperatives. A power plant operations worker couldn’t legally visit the console area where I monitored radar scopes and vice versa, because neither or us had a valid operational reason to be in the other’s area.
One of our four tropospheric scatter antennae. The ‘gun’ atop the column to the left directed a signal into the ‘dish’, which then ‘scattered’ that signal like shotgun pellets. The transmission would fire up into and be reflected back to earth by the troposphere, eventually into a receiving antenna some 400 miles away. In this instance, the receiver was located at DYE 3, where I also served for awhile. The tropo scatter principal is similar to amplitude modulation (AM) radio transmission.
This faded sign in English, ‘Greenlander’ and Danish was planted in front of the fuel tank near the entrance to the station building. It failed to deter frequent visits by all sorts of folks. Native men walked nearly 8 miles from the beachfront village at Kap Dan to sell exquisitely carved ivory figurines called ‘tupilaks’ (my phonetic spelling) worked into the shapes of native deities. I own about 12 of these. Native women would visit for other purposes. Some enjoyed extended stays. I recall entering the bathroom during a break in my graveyard shift to find three native women showering. They weren’t embarrassed at all, but I was and left.
Speaking of tupilaks, here are eight that rested atop a shelf in a building at the Danish base station at Kap Dan airport. Greenland, of course, was a Danish territory in those years, so Danes performed much of the skilled work on the icy continent, including (by treaty) construction work on America’s DEW Line stations. This multilateral association paid dividends at DYE 4 where we enjoyed Danish cheeses, beer, prawns and other Scandinavian culinary delights in the mess hall.


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