White Sands Missile Range Launch Complex 33
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Launch Complex 33 History

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Nike Cellular Launch Bays

      This photo is of the Nike Cellular Launch Bays, which were built at Launch Complex 33 north of the Block house sometime in the early 1960's. The are three bays, two with the doors closed and the one on the right with the doors open.  There was a berm built up around the facility.  The structure to the left and extending along the ends to the bays is an overhead crane, used to to load the missiles on the launchers in each bay.  There is an enclosed tunnel at the near end of the bays with access to each bay.  There is also a small room, with the top visible near the left end of the tunnel.  Note the white topped station wagon sitting near the left exit of the tunnel.  It is not believed that any Cellular Launch Bays were ever deployed on tactical sites.
     At the upper left of the photo is a bunker which housed the control room for this and other Nike facilities at LC-33.  It also contained three large diesel generators.  The large structure on the left side of the bunker is the air intake for the generators.  There are three exhaust ports for the generators on top, with an escape hatch just below them.
     The three bays and the overhead crane remain at LC-33 today.  The crane rail structure was shortened back to approximately the left end of the tunnel, the bay doors were removed, and a building built over the complex.  The bays now contain equipment from the Shock and Vibration Laboratory at White Sands.  The bunker houses the controls for the Shock and Vibration equipment.