But it remains a crucial science laboratory, says Dennis Papadopoulos, a physicist at the University of Maryland who works with HAARP.
"If we didn't know the radio science of the ionosphere, we wouldn't have TV reception from satellites, we wouldn't have GPS, we wouldn't have any of that," he
can send signals to these plasma belts, which the satellites can detect and use as measuring tools, Papadopoulos
"We can create a perturbation, and see what we can observe," he
"We can whistle at the probes and say, ‘Did you hear the whistle, or is it a longer whistle?'"
There are similar facilities elsewhere on Earth, but they're not as powerful: One is in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, and another is in Russia.
The closest HAARP counterpart is at a European Incoherent Scatter Scientific Association
(EISCAT) facility in Tromsø, Norway, that is used by seven countries, including China.
says that by closing HAARP
, the U.S. is ceding ground to countries like China.
says this is the basis for the HAARP earthquake claims.
As for mind control?
"If that were true, they wouldn't shut us down," Papadopoulos laughs.
Is This the End?
is among a few scientists trying to find new ways to fund and operate HAARP
favors a consortium of research institutions paying fees to use it, and wants Congress to pay $2 or $3 million a year for the next three to five years to keep it going in the interim.
But they'd better act fast: The military is not just shutting HAARP
down, but preparing to bulldoze it.
The final DARPA-sponsored experiment is set to end in June, according to Nature.
In classic DARPA-acronym fashion, it's called Basic Research on Ionospheric Characteristics and Effects, or BRIOCHE.
After that, the bulldozers will arrive, Papadopoulos
"There are amazing things we can do with HAARP