Texarkana Air Force Station

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Texarkana Air Force Station (1955-1968) - A Cold War Air Force Station. Initially assigned a Permanent ID of M-91, a NORAD ID of Z-91. Turned over to the FAA in 1968.

History

Established and became operational in 1955 as Texarkana Air Force Station manned by the 703rd AC&W Squadron.

Initial equipment included the FPS-3 search radar. The radars were upgraded to a FPS-20A search set and a MPS-14 height-finder radar by 1958. The FPS-20A was upgraded to a FPS-91A in 1966.

Texarkana AFS was a manual Ground Control Intercept (GCI) radar site providing surveillance, identification, and interception of unknown aircraft within the range of their radars. Senior directors at the radar site could direct interceptor aircraft to identify unknown targets using ground to air radio.

The site became a joint-use USAF/FAA site in 1960 providing radar data for both military and civil use.. The site was redesignated as NORAD ID Z-91 on 31 Jul 1963.

Closure

Texarkana AFS and the 703rd were deactivated on 8 Sep 1968. The site continued operation as an FAA radar site until a new site was built about 8 miles southeast of Texarkana.

Physical Plant

The physical plant of the site was divided into the main site, a cantonment area, a housing area, and a radio site. The main site housed the operations buildings, the radar towers, and the backup generators. The cantonment area housed the enlisted barracks, the bachelor officer's quarters, the orderly room, the dining hall, the motor pool and other support buildings. Many of these buildings at Texarkana AFS were of the Quonset hut type. Apart from the main site was a small 9 unit housing area for married personnel.

A separate radio site housed the radio equipment for directing aircraft intercepts. Like most early radar stations, Texarkana AFS originally had separate radio transmitter and receiver sites used by local controllers for voice direction of fighter interceptors to their targets. Later the local radio sites were reconfigured, usually into a single site that was known as the Ground to Air Transmitter Receiver (GATR) site. The GATR site communicated with the interceptors from either the local site or the direction center via voice commands.


Texarkana AFS Major Equipment List
Search Radar HF Radar Data Systems Radio
Unit Designations
  • 703rd Aircraft Control & Warning (AC&W) Squadron (1955-1968)
703rd Assignments


Texarkana Air Force Station Partial Commanders List (edit list)
Assumed Relieved Rank Name Cullum Notes
Captain Steele, Tommy R. N/A
1959~ Major Rausen, George R, N/A

Current Status

Closed facility by the radome and many of the buildings remain including the operations building.


Location: Texarkana in Miller County, Arkansas.

Maps & Images

Lat: 33.45556 Long: -93.99806

See Also:

Sources:

  • Cornett, Lloyd H. & Johnson, Mildred W., A Handbook of Aerospace Defense Organization (1946-1980), Office of History ADC, Peterson AFB, Colorado, 31 Dec 1980, 179 pages, Pdf, page 100.
  • Winkler, David F., Searching the Skies: the Legacy of the United States Cold War Defense Radar Program, USAF Hq Air Combat Command, 1997, 192 pages, Pdf, page 98.

Links:

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