Goose Bay, Labrador

1959 Historical Report USAF Historical Division

Historical Record
641st AC&W Squadron
Goose Bay, Labrador
1 April 1959 to 30 June 1959

Section I


  1. Unit and Location

641st AC&W Squadron
APO 677, New York, NY

  1. Name and Grade of Commander

Delbert R Smyth, Major, USAF

  1. Chain of Command (Superior Echelons)
  2. United States Air Force
    Air Defense Command
    64th Air Division (Defense)
    4732nd Air Defense Group

  • Subordinate Units (Down to and including squadrons)
  • None

  • Mission (Give authority and brief statement of primary mission)
  • The mission of the 641st AC&W Squadron is to conduct Air Defense operations within that area assigned by Headquarters, 64th Air Division (Defense) and function as a Prime Direction Center within the Air Defense system.
    Authority: Paragraph 2, 4732nd Air Defense Group Regulation number 20-2, dated 1 April 1958.

  • Personnel

















  • Equipment (Give official nomenclature and quantity of mission-type equipment)
  • AN/CPS-6B Prime Radar, AN/TPS-502 Back-up Height Radar, AN/FPS-502 Back-up Search Radar, AN/GPX-6 Radar Identification, 10 Cummins Diesel Generators (100KW) model LGA, 8 AN/GRC-27 Multi-Channel UHF Transmitter-Receiver, 6 AN/GRT-3 Single Channel UHF Transmitter-Receiver, 6 AN/GRR-7 Single Channel Receiver, 5 AN/FRT-502 VHF Transmitters, 11 AF/URG-60 VHF Receivers.

    Section II



    Projects, Plans and Programs:

    Dr. Donald Findley, 64th Air Division representative from the System Training Corporation, visited from 6-8 April 1959 to observe and analyze our system training program and to determine the degree of adequacy and our requirements.

    Accomplishing the Mission:

    The 64th Air Division Tactical Evaluation Team evaluated the directors of this unit and upgraded Captain Clarence H Bell, Operations Officer, to Expert.


    Major Delbert R Smyth assumed command of the squadron on 17 June 1959. Major Charles L Whitenack Jr., Executive Officer, and Captain Jerome A Forte, Installations Engineer, arrived during the past quarter. Personnel changes also took place on three of the four Operations crews during June due to rotating personnel.

    Teletype section manning remained critical during the past quarter with an average of 15 personnel assigned against an authorization of 21 spaces.

    Equipment Performance:

    The AN/UPS-T5 (15-J-1C) was TDIOP from 17 February 1959 until 4 May 1959. Command assistance was requested and a representative from Canadian Marconi accomplished the installation of parts which had been manufactured by Ogden Air Depot. Installation and check-out was completed 25 May 1959. This training aid was made more realistic by a modification 18 June 1959 which extended the range to 240 miles and increased the speed to 1200 knots per hour.

    The pre-trigger output from the synchronizer SN-70 would not trigger the synchronizer SN-89 in its existing position, so the maintenance section modified the equipment by building a trigger amplifier, then blocking oscillator and cathode follower to isolate, shape, and amplify the pre-trigger to a sufficient amplitude to fire the IFF synchronizer SN-89. This modification corrected the IFF malfunction and presentation with reference to video presentation.

    On 21 May the AN/CPS-6B azimuth drive developed excessive antenna hunting, loss of antenna control, and erratic PPI sweeps. Replacement or repair of the faulty components corrected the problem and the antenna drive system has been functioning smoothly.

    On 23 May DC power to the maintenance room cabinets failed resulting in complete loss of trigger and video. Primary AC power coming into the utility power supply had arced severely from a relay socket to the chassis destroying two relays in one socket. The defective components were replaced the same day and the AN/CPS-6B was returned to operation.

    Incorrect AN/CPS-6B angle mark positioning and antenna positioning instability was traced to a defective tachometer, which was replaced on 15 June. While trouble-shooting the antenna drive system the azimuth drive amplidyne overheated severely. A replacement amplidyne was ordered and received on 23 June 1959.

    A Canadian Marconi team arrived 20 June 1959 to overhaul the AN/FPS-502. Completion was expected approximately 3 July 1959.

    All the radomes were given their annual coat of paint during the period 23 May to 5 June 1959.

    Nine UHF transmitters, T-217A/GR, modified for continuous operations were received and installed in April 1959. The unmodified transmitters were turned in for shipment to RAFD.

    Wire Maintenance completed modification of all ten-line operators units (TA-316/FTA-13) except units with radio channels. Keying relays have begun to function improperly and appear to be beyond adjustment-in-place. Sufficient spare relays are available in extra relay racks on the frame to permit changeover, however investigation is continuing to determine the cause of relay failure.

    Canadian Marconi Company completed overhaul of all teletype equipment on 27 May 1959.


    Facilities continue to be taxed to the maximum. Due to a lack of space airmen have been forced to live three and four in a room. The BOQ has also been full the past quarter. Space is badly needed for an IE shop area.


    A total of 54,019 miles have been driven in the past 331 days without a reportable accident.

    Personnel Services Activities:

    Entertainment presented the past quarter has been excellent. An average of two shows per month have been presented by state-side bands and USO groups.

    Typed Name and Grade of Commander

    Delbert R Smyth, Major, USAF