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FYQ-9 Long Range Search Data Processing and Display System - A Search Data Processing and Display System system built to semiautomatically process radar tracks in the Alaska Air Defense System 1965-1983.

FYQ-9 System Locations.
FYQ-9 System Block Diagram.

FYQ-9 Components (edit list)
Component Model Quantity Height Width Deep Weight Notes
Radar Indicator UPA-35
Semiautomatic Track Data Inserter SATDI
Manual Message Composer MMC
Data Processor UYK-1
Tabular Readout TRO
Teletype Printer M-28
Dew Line Message Identifier

The FYQ-9 System

The FYQ-9 System was envisioned with several goals in mind. These included replacing the slow and labor-intensive process of manually plotting radar tracks and manually "Telling" the tracks up the chain of command. Decision-making was required at each level to ensure that only the important tracks reached the NORAD Combat Operations Center in Colorado and that the appropriate action was taken at each intermediate level. Automating the "Telling" function greatly sped up the process and required significantly fewer operations personnel at the remote radar sites.

A2C Larry Pronovost Operating a UPA-35 Scope with FYQ-9 Track Input Shelf (SATDI) at Kotzebue AS, 1972-1973.

The system placed the highly capable UPA-35 PPI scopes at each of the radar sites with a modified front shelf to provide a track identity and input capability using a trackball, a keyboard, and an entry button. The UPA-35 shelf was known as the Semiautomatic Track Data Inserter (SATDI) and contained 20 track selection buttons.

Once entered, tracks were automatically forwarded using M-28 teletype gear to all echelons. The M-28 teletype gear was configured to provide a limited store-and-forward buffer to concentrate traffic during heavy traffic periods. GCI Radar sites had the additional capability to manually input track messages regarding weapon status etc using a Manual Message Composer (MMC). M-28 teletype printers were used to provide hardcopy throughout the system.

At the four radar sites that were also command centers and at the Regional Combat Center a UYK-1 Computer accomplished the necessary coordinate conversions to place each track at the correct geographic location on vertical plotting displays. The UYK-1 Computer was particularly suited for this type of application having been designed for use aboard nuclear submarines. Its rounded shape was designed so that it would fit down a submarine hatch.

UYK-1 TRW-130 Computer.
Semiautomatic Track Data Inserter (SATDI).
Manual Message Composer (MMC).
Tabular Readout (TRO) Console.

See Also:


  • 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
  • MIL-HDBK-162A, 15 Dec 1965.
  • Aerospace Control and Warning Systems Operator, AFSC 27650, Atmospheric Systems, Vol 4, USAF Extension Course Institute, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Alabama. Online at Google Books.
  • Sturm, Thomas A., Command and Control for North American Air Defense 1959-1963 (U), USAF Historical Division Liaison Office, Jan 1965, Pdf, Page 47


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