The Deutschlandsender III was built near Herzberg an der Elster between 1936 and 1939. With a power of 500 kV, this was one of the most powerful transmitters in the world when it was constructed and its antenna tower, with a height of 325 meters, was the second tallest man-made object on Earth. The antenna tower, which served directly as an antenna, carried on its top a lens-like structure 25 meters in diameter and four meters tall that would probably be referred to as a UFO today.
Not a decorative element, the structure at the top of the Deutschlandsender III improved the capacitive properties of the tower. By night, the UFO-like object was illuminated by giant beams of light so that no aircraft would fly into them. Aircraft obstacle light would have been too expensive to mount on the structure, it was determined, because of the high voltage potential.
The transmitter was destroyed by an air raid on April 21, 1945, but the tower survived World War II. It was dismantled, though, between 1946 and 1947 by the Soviet occupants of the area. It is unknown what happened with the parts afterward. Most probably it was rebuilt somewhere in the former Soviet Union, but it is unknown where. Some claim that it was rebuilt in 1948 and 1949 in Raszyn, Poland, without the lens on the top.
The remaining buildings of the transmitter were demolished in 1959 and water facility was built in the area. The basement of the structure that stabilized the tower is still there and draws visitors to this day.
- Wikipedia: Deutschlandsender Herzberg/Elster: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deutschlandsender_Herzberg/Elster
- Structurae: Deutschlandsender Herzberg: http://en.structurae.de/structures/data/index.cfm?ID=s0010713