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While rewatching the first episode of Stargate SG-1, I realized again, that it might not be a good idea to put your secret portal to other planets right under your central air command bunker.

The Problem

An attack through the stargate could not only give the invading aliens a defendable beachhead. It would also destroy the current command structure and could thus slow the response time of our air force, when a full-time invasion hits.

But where would we put such a teleportation device, to explore the galaxy?

Constraints

Assuming the device would work similarly to the TV-Series, so it would need a lot of energy, and we have no other alien technology, other then the stargate itself.

So we would need some kind of infrastructure, where people working on the project could live and where research is done. The stargate is secretly owned by the US, without the knowledge of any other county.

I'm seeing three possible threats at the moment which should be addressed:

  • An alien Invasion by the Goa'uld, trying to come through the wormhole.
  • A malfunctioning alien device, that will affect the surrounding area. (e.g. a nuclear explosion or a time dilation)
  • A disease, affecting people. (Similar to Sight Unseen)
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  • $\begingroup$ "nuclear research center" military owned, in desert. Can be made with lots of blast doors and weapons, add a cut off switch, or a deep hole it can be dropped down. $\endgroup$ – Donald Hobson Jul 5 '16 at 12:39
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    $\begingroup$ Just to be a total nerd... Sight Unseen was not a disease. It was a partial dimensional shift. $\endgroup$ – Matthew Whited Jul 5 '16 at 19:16
  • $\begingroup$ An episode of SG-1, "Foothold", actually dealt with this scenario. $\endgroup$ – Michael Hampton Jul 5 '16 at 19:25
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    $\begingroup$ The "Alpha Site" (basically an out-of-the-way planet disconnected from the rest of the network) always struck me as a good place to base their operations, rather than running things from Earth. $\endgroup$ – Richard Jul 5 '16 at 23:01
  • $\begingroup$ @Richard "disconnected from the rest of the network": I think this is why they can't use it for exploration ;-) $\endgroup$ – Quentin Jul 6 '16 at 8:33
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Cheyenne Mountain is actually a good location.

  1. It's bundled with a big non-secret military base. Meaning there's a good reason to have tons of soldiers hanging around, tons of money in the budget and tons of power being used, and there's a good reason to have extremely limited access and an extensive array of defenses and countermeasures.

  2. It hosts a former missile silo (in the show at least), which means you can fit the gate through it. Fun fact, Stargates can't be dissambled. Unless yours can, you'll need pretty big doors.

  3. There isn't any big population center near by (at least none that is mentioned in the show), so they can close the area fairly easily without causing too much hubbub. Presumably, military personel lives either in the base or nearby, which would make the area a bit easier to control.

  4. It's in a mountain, so if all hell breaks lose, you can just blow it up. You can presumably pass that as an earthquake, and it would still probably look like a mountain. Also being a mountain, it's pretty hard to destroy from the outside.

  5. It's underground, so any invader would have to fight their way up, which would be a rather tall order if you are only using force. Underground is also a good defense against satellite imagery.

Admittedly, for point 3, acceptable distance to and size of population center may vary. In the show, they mention at least once they have closed the surrounding area due to "chemical leak". I don't remember they ever mention including Colorado Springs in a quarantine zone.

To be fair, I've watched the show a lot, I never catch they had a 450k city sitting 15km away.


Area 51 would be a good candidate as well. Reason #4 maybe wouldn't hold as much, but to counterbalance that, the base has a perfect cover. If anyone were to say "Area 51 is home to a super secret military project that explores other planets and fights aliens", that'd sound like a conspiracy theory from the 1950s.

It's probably why they stacked their alien artifacts there in the first place, because reasonable people won't lend any credit to Area 51 conspiracy theories.


Extrapolationg from these examples:

  • Anywhere with an actual, non-secret military base. That is to say, anywhere where you would expect large military presence, large budget, large power consumption and restricted access.

  • Anywhere that you can hide easily. Which is to say pretty much everywhere you can dig and build a thing underground. Underground provides cover from satellites and can hide some amount of explosion, as opposed to something above ground which will very noticeably disappear when it explodes.

  • Anywhere far from big population centers. You don't want too many pesky civilians around.

  • Anywhere with at least one big door. Because the Stargate is big and will have to fit through that.

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    $\begingroup$ Cheyenne Mountain is actually right next to it in Colorado Springs with 450.000 people living in it, and it's "just" 60 miles south of Denver. And in reality it's not a missile silo, but a command bunker, able to withstand nuclear attacks. It used to be the north american airspace control center. $\endgroup$ – RobMMurdock Jul 5 '16 at 12:31
  • $\begingroup$ @RobMMurdock The Stargate is fitted in a missile silo, so I guess that's to be filled in the artistic license category. $\endgroup$ – AmiralPatate Jul 5 '16 at 12:36
  • $\begingroup$ @AmiralPatate In the show Colorado Springs actually does come up in the episode about the ability to see creatures in other dimensions spreading from person to person (Sight Unseen, S6, E13). $\endgroup$ – called2voyage Jul 5 '16 at 15:17
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    $\begingroup$ @RobMMurdock They have a self destruct and presumably a remote self destruct on the mountain. We see General Hammond activating that every time the Stargate is activated, then deactivating it afterwards. You wouldn't need to blow the mountain up from the outside, making 15km a fair distance to be out of harms way, as the mountain itself would smother the explosion and just collapse the entire underground structure. $\endgroup$ – Anoplexian Jul 5 '16 at 15:19
  • $\begingroup$ Small stargates can't be disassembled. Supergates can. They can even be sent (in pieces) through stargates $\endgroup$ – Richard Jul 5 '16 at 23:02
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Create a cover story for something that needs a lot of the same resources: huge amounts of underground excavation, many miles of superconductive magnets and infrastructure for same, computing resources, etc. That sounds like a collider, but on an unprecidented scale: a superconductive super collider! You also choose a site good for underground chamber making and free from seismic activity, just as for building a collider.

People see the published (cover) specs, and see how much chalk and shale is coming up, and assume that you are making a huge circle tunnel, but a large chamber with several small tunnels have the same volume of digging. Be sure to design in an access hatch by which a huge wheel-shaped instrument can be lowered later.

detector down shaft source

Then, when money is spent and the needed work is done, you cancel the project. You skip hooking up the huge power feed to the huge intake you built, never running power lines into the area, so people assume the site really is dead—nobody knows about the off-the-grid Naquadah reactor.

The newly discovered high-temperature superconductor material — this “invention” had to be leaked to general scientific community in order to provide for industrial quantities to be manufactured — turned out to be fatally flawed for the supercollider usage, as it is not only brittle but can't handle the stress of the magnetic field it was made for. This fiasco was the very excuse for cancelling the project with such high sunk costs, and everyone in the scientific community can see for themselves that it is true and repeatable: they crumble like dry soda crackers, and only handle a fraction of the magnetic strength predicted in theory and extrapolated from small samples.

But, it is all a ruse. The use case is actually different from what the public thinks, and a stabilizing coating was kept secret and not revealed with the material proper. The 80 killometers of superconductor is safely stashed in the hole, refit to its real purpose.

So, I conclude that the place to put the stargate command is near Waxahachie Texas.

Finally, as a disinformation campaign to camouflage and repudiate leaks, create a TV show with the same rough premise, but campy and differing in actual detail, including the use of a high-profile location for the command center.


addendum

it would need a lot of energy, and we have no other alien technology, other then the stargate itself.

The original plan was to use a reactor from an aircraft carrier, with additional cover stories about “loosing” one. But small Naquadah generators were discovered on early missions and easily scaled up.

[cover for] An alien Invasion by the Goa'uld

People already run around in strange costumes, and this started in 1981. This was just 2 years before the SSC project was publicly endorsed, about the time it was first planned as a cover. In fact, it was itself a cover story for a camp of relocated offworlders living with medeval technology. The newspaper was told “oh, they're re-enactors (or larping)” and everyone decided to join in. The large movement of people through the normally rual area was an initial lure to do more project-related activities there.

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  • $\begingroup$ Credit to Spikee’s answer and discussion for the germ of my idea. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Jul 5 '16 at 17:10
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    $\begingroup$ The Atlas detector on the picture looks perfectly like a stargate... $\endgroup$ – Tacticus Jul 5 '16 at 19:32
  • $\begingroup$ Can't make a naquadah reactor until after you have the base, though. So you can't depend on that energy source. $\endgroup$ – Puppy Jul 5 '16 at 19:37
  • $\begingroup$ @Puppy I'll second that. Also, naquadah doesn't exist on Earth (or the solar system IIRC), so you're making yourself critically dependent on the stargate. No naquadah therefore no gate, therefore no naquadah. Also, larpers don't shoot people on sight. $\endgroup$ – AmiralPatate Jul 6 '16 at 11:00
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    $\begingroup$ This is an awesome idea. Sadly I can only accept one answer. But I'll +1 you. $\endgroup$ – RobMMurdock Jul 7 '16 at 10:46
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Somewhere not too obviously suspicious and it should be logistically feasible while having a place where massive energy usage doesn't draw unnecessary attention.

It should also be a place where regular people don't find it abnormal that a section of the facility has restricted access.

Also, the cover should be large enough so that a lot of human traffic is deemed normal. A 100+ people leaving a local bakery on a daily basis is going to be suspicious.

I'd still put it in a military grade bunker deep below maybe ...

  • A large powerplant
  • A steel mill (or any other large production site)
  • Some university's high tech research center
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    $\begingroup$ Vegas seems to hit all those points. Have a deep underground bunker under a hotel construction.huge energy demand shouldn't be noticed too much in neon-lit Vegas. And lots of different types of people coming and going at all hours! And if alien's do invade...they might just be scared off by all the garish lights and convention dressed humans! And if they destroy the facility...Whoops. :) $\endgroup$ – EveryBitHelps Jul 5 '16 at 11:22
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    $\begingroup$ @EveryBitHelps: If they do invade ... Vegas is easy to enter, hard to leave ... $\endgroup$ – Spikee Jul 5 '16 at 11:27
  • $\begingroup$ what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas... $\endgroup$ – EveryBitHelps Jul 5 '16 at 11:29
  • $\begingroup$ @EveryBitHelps SGC has a self-destruct button, which as far as I remember is some sort of nuclear device. You may want to get that stuff out of any population center. $\endgroup$ – AmiralPatate Jul 5 '16 at 11:30
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    $\begingroup$ What if the LHC is really just an attempt to re-create the Stargate, using more limited technology (and thus larger)? $\endgroup$ – Martin Carney Jul 5 '16 at 16:02
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Given the number of long shot survival scenario's that resulted during the TV show, and accepting that even though lots of alien technology was acquired, none of it ever got out to the public where it could do real good, there is only one valid conclusion...

The Ancient Egyptians had the right idea! Bury it.

However, we have now better options than a big cover stone. We can sink it into a vat of concrete or molten steal. ...or since the OP has asked for a specific location...

We could set it up in the lowest level of a nuclear waste storage facility.

That way, when the Goa'uld send in their troops, we don't have to fight them. We just let them cook in the radiation for a while, then send in a properly shielded team to recover their high tech weapons and armor.

--- Edit After Change of Heart ---

I originally wrote this with a tongue-in-cheek attitude, imagining a reboot of the Stargate franchise where the characters came to this conclusion, causing the long-running multi-thread storyline to reboot into a single episode, half hour short with no hope of a sequel.

But the more I think about it, a nuclear waste disposal site isn't a horrible choice. Operate the Stargate as in the series, but keep it housed in a properly shielded, lead-lined chamber within the basement of a disposal site. Then, should the enemy ever establish a stronghold, you can press a button which slides the shielding out of the way and cook the invaders.

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  • $\begingroup$ The problem is that they'll know there's an active gate, and they'd probably send at least one ship to investigate. $\endgroup$ – AmiralPatate Jul 5 '16 at 13:32
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    $\begingroup$ Not if one horribly burned and slightly glowing Jaffa returns from their first gate-based expedition. They will just figure that we'd been hit by a solar flare or radioactive meteor, and then they would leave us alone for a few million years. $\endgroup$ – Henry Taylor Jul 5 '16 at 14:08
  • $\begingroup$ If we are following the show, the Jaffa wouldn't be able to return because there's no DHD. They could also send a ship just to confirm the planet is a wasteland regardless. Burial I think will only work if it renders the gate inactive, and if they did that sometime in 1994 when O'Neil got back from Abydos. $\endgroup$ – AmiralPatate Jul 5 '16 at 14:33
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Area 51 :)

You need a place that: Won't raise too much suspicion.

Would need to be underground, otherwise it's visible from space (Russian/Chinese/North Korean Satellites)

Would need to be defendable, and self destructible.

As such a military base somewhere in the desert would work.

I see most people talk about high people traffic, but we have no idea what happens inside a military base, so as such, having say 20 teams of 4 people embarking on missions + 100 more for backend operations doesn't seem too much. And as long as you have them mostly on base, there's not much traffic going in/out of it.

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Since it is very likely that you will have to nuke the structure at some point, I would place it in an a-bomb testing area. As the Bikini Atoll seems to be too far away from the US mainland, I would suggest the Nevada Test Site https://goo.gl/maps/pKn879JW8iJ2 which is very close to Area 51.

That way you could use a restricted area that can easily be connected to existing infrastructure and when you have to nuke it, you could say it was another test or part of an old bomb which didn't detonate.

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Thinking from the alien invasion point of view, I'd want to put it somewhere that's a long way from civilisation and is surrounded by open, barren terrain. Some options would be:

  • The desert - some people have already suggested Area 51, but how about on a bombing range? Lots of reasons for people to come and go, lots to stop people from wanting to go there - and if it all goes badly wrong, a plausible reason for a B52 to be scattering JDAMs around as though they're going out of fashion
  • The sea - how about an oil platform or similar? The Sea-based X Band Radar would be a good example; perhaps it really is the real location of the Stargate [Citation needed]. You could even use submarines to get too and from it.
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