Fort Meade radar station
|Army Air Defense Command Post (AADCP)|
|military command and control facility|
|County||Philadelphia Defense Area|
|Installation||Fort George G. Meade|
|Command||Army Air Defense Command|
|Nearest city||Baltimore, Maryland|
The Fort Meade radar station was a Cold War military site with several sets of radar equipment in various Army and USAF radar networks. The site operated c. 1950 until 1979 and had a Project Nike command post and radar network.
Lashup site L-14
Site L-14 of the temporary Lashup Radar Network was the ground-controlled interception radar station established at Fort George G. Meade until the radar's[specify] surveillance area was covered by a Quantico AFS radar in 1955. The Fort Meade radar station also had the first experimental AN/GSG-2[clarification needed] Antiaircraft Defense System in 1955.
ARAACOM site W-13DC
In 1957 the Fort Meade station was designated an Army Air-Defense Command Post (AADCP) for the Washington-Baltimore Defense Area. The site had the first operational Martin AN/FSG-I Antiaircraft Defense System, a fire distribution center for Nike Missiles and which was operated by the 35th Antiaircraft Artillery Brigade. Designated W-13DC, the site had an AN/FPS-67 search radar and later a solid-state Hughes AN/TSQ-51 Air Defense Command and Coordination System. After the 1950 Army Anti-Aircraft Command (ARAACOM) was renamed in 1957, Fort Meade became the Headquarters, 2nd Region, Army Air Defense Command.
ADC site RP-54
On October 1, 1961, W-13DC was integrated[clarification needed] with the Aerospace Defense Command network as replacement site RP-54 operated by the USAF's 770th Airborne Control and Warning Squadron that transferred from former site P-54 at Palermo Air Force Station, New Jersey. Site RP-54 became part of the 1957 Washington Air Defense Sector) with an interface with the DC-04 SAGE system direction center at Fort Lee Air Force Station (inactivated March 1, 1983).
NORAD site Z-227
On July 1, 1963, the station was redesignated as site Z-227 (Palermo AFS re-opened as site Z-54), and the USAF unit was renamed the 770th Radar Squadron assuming control of the AN/FPS-67 and installing one each AN/FPS-6 and AN/FPS-6B height-finder radars by 1962. In 1964 an AN/FPS-90 replaced Meade's AN/FPS-6B, and the AN/FPS-6 was shut down; while in 1966 the AN/FPS-67 was upgraded to an AN/FPS-67B.[verification needed]
In addition to an annex at the former Manassas Air Force Station, the Fort Meade radar station had unmanned AN/FPS-14 Gap Filler annexes at Hermanville, Maryland (RP-54A/Z-227A, ) and Hanover, Pennsylvania (RP-54B/Z-227B, ). The Washington AADCPs at Suitland & Ft Meade were deactivated on September 1, 1974; and USAF air defense operations at Ft Meade ended October 1, 1979 (a plan to use the site in the 1983 Joint Surveillance System was not implemented).
- Bender, Donlad E (December 1999). "The Pedricktown Missile Master Site, 1960-1966" (FDU.edu website). Quarterly Newsletter (Salem County Historical Society). Retrieved 2011-09-06. "A prototype system produced by the U.S. Army Signal Corps during 1950 eventually led to the deployment of the experimental Antiaircraft Defense System (AN/GSG-2) at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland, during 1955. ... First deployed at Fort George G. Meade during 1957, the nine million dollar Missile Master system was eventually installed at over a dozen locations within the Continental United States."
- Winkler, David F (1997). Searching the skies: the legacy of the United States Cold War defense radar program. Prepared for United States Air Force Headquarters Air Combat Command.
- "Missile Master News Release-1" (transcript). United States Army. December 5, 1957. Retrieved 2011-09-03.
- Cole, Merle T. "Army Air Defense Installations in Anne Arundel County: 1950-1975". Nike Missiles. FTMeade.Army.mil. Retrieved 2011-09-15.
- Cornett, Lloyd H; Johnson, Mildred W (yeartbd). A Handbook of Aerospace Defense Organization 1946 - 1980. Peterson Air Force Base: Office of History, Aerospace Defense Center.
- "Information for Fort Meade, MD". Radomes.org. Retrieved 2011-09-02.