Oilton FAA Radar Site
Oilton FAA Radar Site (1969-Active) - A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Long Range Radar (LLR) site first established in 1969 near Oilton, Webb County, Texas. The site is used to identify and track military and civilian aircraft movements within a 200-mile radius and to provide air-ground radio communication with those aircraft. Assigned a SAGE System ID of Z-242, a JSS ID of J-16 and an FAA ID of QZA. Active FAA Radar Site.
The contract for construction of this site was let in October 1968 to Dale Kettle for $114,669 to be completed in 150 calendar days. The site became an FAA radar site in 1969, furnishing radar track data to the FAA ARTCC's and to USAF Direction Centers. The initial FAA FPS-66A search radar was replaced with an ARSR-4 3D radar in the mid-1990s.
In 1972 a USAF FPS-6 Height-Finder radar was installed on a nearby site to provide height information to the newly formed Southern Air Defense Sector (SADS) operated from the Houston Manual NORAD Control Center co-located with the Houston ARTCC. The FPS-6 height-finder was maintained and operated by Detachment OL-AB of the 630th Radar Squadron from Houston and later Detachment OL-AA of the 678th Air Defense Group at Tyndall (BUIC). The FPS-6 later became an FPS-116 before being removed circa 1988.
A FYQ-47 Common Digitizer was probably placed in service by February 1973 when the USAF/FAA FST-2 to FYQ-47 replacement program was completed. By 1990 the site was equipped with an FPS-67B search radar and a CD-2A Common Digitizer. The Oilton CD-2A was scheduled to receive an upgrade kit to implement three level weather data processing in August 1992.
The radar site data is now available to the USAF/NORAD Battle Control System-Fixed (BCS-F) operations centers (EADS & WADS) as well as the FAA Houston ARTCC (ZHU) and adjacent ARTCCs. Other federal agencies have access to the data under the Homeland Security umbrella.
Active FAA facility near Oilton in Webb County, Texas.