The Ice Frontier

Cold War exhibition

The National Norwegian Aviation Museum is at present working on realising a large exhibition about the Cold War - this major museum project has been given the preliminary name “The Ice Frontier”. The Cold War has been a central part of Norwegian aviation history for the last 60 years. The conflict has also influenced and indeed formed development of Norwegian society as a whole, and has provided the basis for the fast growth of strong civil aviation in Norway. Based on the Cold War, The National Norwegian Aviation Museum wishes to focus more closely on some of the central issues connected to Norwegian aviation history and Norwegian history as a whole. 

International focus

“The Ice Frontier” project is the result of The National Norwegian Aviation Museum having wished for many years to mark the Cold War’s history in Norway, in which Northern Norway and Bodø in particular, attracted worldwide attention due to the shooting down of a U-2 aeroplane bound for Bodø over Sverdlovsk in the Soviet Union. The Royal Norwegian Air Force Base in Bodø played an important role during the Cold War. The museum aims to mirror this period of extreme tension - without real war - for the whole country in an international perspective. The heritage from the Cold War with present focus on Barents regional co-operation, strategic politics, resource management and resource conflicts amongst other things will also be illuminated. 

The building

“The Ice Frontier” building is to be erected in juxtaposition but connected to the existing museum building just outside Bodø city centre and near the airport (see situation diagram). The building is primarily to be built to house a modern and creative exhibition using interactive methods and technology and science centre methodology. In addition the building will include other types of cultural activity as well as commercial activity. 


In order to realise the coming exhibition, the museum has carried out several research projects and will synthesise these studies with new material in order to create a high-quality, exciting and challenging exhibition.

International co-operation

The National Norwegian Aviation Museum will in its work on research and exhibition be assisted by and co-operate with several other institutions in Norway and abroad. We can name The Norwegian Defence Museum, The Institute for Defence Studies in Oslo, the Pomor State University in Arkhangel, Russia, the Cold War International History Project in Washington, DC, USA, and The House of Technology in Luleå, Sweden. 

Project leader

Peter N. Glanfield (55) has been engaged as project leader for the two-year pilot project for “The Ice Frontier” - the museum’s planned new building. Glanfield was born in London, England, but has lived and worked in Norway since 1973. In recent years he has worked as executive head of faculty for social science and advisor at Bodø University College and in several different positions in the Nordland County Administration.