Phantom F4 Jet at Keilir Aviation Academy

U.S. Naval Air Station Keflavik (NASKEF) was built during World War II by the United States Army as part of its mission to defend Iceland and secure North Atlantic air routes that served to ferry personnel, equipment and supplies to Europe. Military forces were withdrawn from Iceland in 1947 and the airfield, originally named Meeks Field, assumed a civilian role as Keflavik International Airport.

American military forces returned to Keflavik in 1951 to form the Iceland Defence Force under the auspices of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation - NATO. During the height of Cold War the air station was home to nearly 6.000 military personnel and their families and employed close to two thousand Icelandic civilian workers in base operations and support. The base was closed in September 2006 and turned over to the Icelandic government.

The former military base has since been regenerated with buildings and infrastructure converted to civilian use. Education and innovation were guidelines for the redevelopment of the area - now named Asbru - focusing on a strong connection with businesses and the economy. The development has been called the biggest recycling project in the history of Iceland. Asbru is a progressive community of innovation, science and education with more than 100 entrepreneurs and companies employing close to one thousand people.

The venerable F-4E Phantom II fighter aircraft of the 57th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, "The Black Knights of Keflavik", signifies the successful role of Naval Air Station Keflavik and embedded units of the Iceland Defense Force in the defence of Iceland, the United States and the NATO alliance. The display is maintained by aircraft engineering students of the Keilir Aviation Academy.