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Part 10: The Air House (621)

One of the most impressive buildings on the site is the Air House. Whilst the western side only betrays its huge size, as it's mostly orange brick, the eastern flank is entirely glass, fronted by eight enormous blue steel exhaust vents. This makes it probably the most photographed, and most recognisable, face of Pyestock.

Associated with the Air House are the enormous pipe arrays which snake from either side of the building. These are so huge that they’re easily picked up on satellite images of the site.

The Air House taken from the roof of Cell 3 West. Low spring sun strikes the western side of the building and the pipe array.
05|05|07 © Simon Cornwell 2007

When existing testing facilities at Pyestock couldn't cope with the next generation of gas turbine and the move to supersonic, a huge expansion of the site was built to the north west. The Air House, with its eight GEC compressor/exhauster gas turbines, simply had two functions: to blow air at supersonic speeds through a test cell or to suck air at supersonic speeds through a test cell.

Whilst this sounds extremely impressive, the interior views are even more so. The GEC gas turbines are all still in-situ in the massive turbine hall, watched over by the impressive modernised control room.

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