Looking at a satellite map to the East of Heathrow Airport, there is a small passenger jet parked in a walled off area. Looking at the aerodrome chart the entire area is listed as Bealine Base, which I assume is used for BA operations. What it the purpose of this walled off area?

Walled area in Bealine Base, East of Heathrow

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    $\begingroup$ Possible duplicate of What are the steep ramps often erected at large airports? $\endgroup$
    – fooot
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 15:38
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    $\begingroup$ The suggested-as-duplicated is not the same thing. This is an engine run facility, with 3 walls to contain not just jet blast but also noise. What's in the not-really-a-duplicate question is just a wall to protect an area from jet blast. These engine run facilities have far more structure than the jet-blast barriers. $\endgroup$
    – Ralph J
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 16:14
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    $\begingroup$ If we told you we'd have to kill you. $\endgroup$
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 17:42
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    $\begingroup$ This is a time-out corner for planes which experienced minor incidents on their last flight. $\endgroup$
    – 0xdd
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 18:47
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    $\begingroup$ Here is an example engine test run at full thrust that takes place in this kind of walled off area: youtube.com/watch?v=lAJNoJvpftY $\endgroup$
    – Jan
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 21:47

1 Answer 1


It allows them to do a run-up test of the engines without blowing debris at other parked aircraft, people, or things on the ground.

[Credit to Ralph J]
The walls have a structure that allows the noise of engine run-ups to be absorbed as well. Engine run-ups, especially multi-engine run ups, can be very loud.

You can read more about IAC-Acoustics ground run-up enclosures here.

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    $\begingroup$ The walls also are constructed to absorb the considerable noise that a high-power engine run generates - which is part of the reason that these structures have 3 sides rather than simply 1 wall. $\endgroup$
    – Ralph J
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 16:12
  • $\begingroup$ These are IAC acoustics ground run enclosures; as the name and Ralph J suggest, the primary purpose of their shape is noise reduction. $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 17:23
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    $\begingroup$ If the primary reason for the walls is noise then this answer needs to be modified or another answer given. $\endgroup$
    – CramerTV
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 17:32
  • $\begingroup$ I'll add the extra info from Ralph when I get back to my computer. $\endgroup$
    – Ron Beyer
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 17:39
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    $\begingroup$ Interestingly, the linked IAC-Acoustics page includes a video with the same run-up enclusure at Heathrow shown in the question - unless there were more than one in that airport. youtube.com/watch?v=MRbAaAInMH4 $\endgroup$
    – Pere
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 22:20

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