Original Date: 07/10/2006
Revision Date: / /
Information : Fire Finder Radar Tower Track Enclosure
Tobyhanna Army Depot developed a temporary shelter that provides the capability to perform tower track testing in inclement weather, reducing overall process flow time and expediting the completion of critical systems to meet requirements of the warfighter.
Tobyhanna Army Depot’s (TYAD’s) Fire Finder tower track radar locates enemy fire emplacements and other small objects from detected trajectory through the use of algorithms. Prior to 2005, TYAD was using an outdoor tower track calibration facility to verify system accuracy. Tower track calibration testing compensates for mechanical manufacturing tolerances and assures mechanical and electrical system alignments are congruent. During tower track testing, wind velocity cannot be greater than 20 mph, there can be no rain or snow, and the outside temperature must be between 50×F and 100× F. The weather does not always cooperate at TYAD, with only 67 clear days a year.
An environmental, nonmetallic shelter was built that will enable TYAD to perform tower track testing in inclement weather and control temperature, wind, snow, rain, and interference (ground clutter). A fiberglass, reinforced plastic and acrylic (plexiglas) shelter was designed and tested by TYAD engineering staff in only four hours using the Computer-Aided Engineering system. The newly constructed shelter has allowed dependable testing on a year-round basis. Fire Finders are always in short supply in the field, making rapid turnaround of overhauled units essential. Calibration testing for Fire Finder radars requires a minimum of three days to complete. Fifty-five Fire Finders were completed in 2005 and 35-40 were completed in 2006.
The new wooden structure, which is presently 90% complete, is fabricated with all nonferrous materials and houses a door to the tower, ground baffles to stop ground clutter, and a small enclosed work area for the employees. The completed tower is expected to improve process flow time and expedite the completion of critical systems to support the warfighter.
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