Norton Manual Direction Center P-84
Norton Manual Direction Center P-84 (1952-1959) - A Cold War Manual Radar System Direction Center first established in 1952 on Norton Air Force Base, San Bernardino, San Bernardino County, California. Named after the location and assigned to 27th Air Division (Defense). Assigned a Permanent System ID of P-84. Deactivated as a Manual Direction Center in 1959.
Established in 1951 and became operational on 6 Feb 1952 as Norton Manual Direction Center P-84.
The Manual System Command Centers were based on the standardized AC&W infrastructure site design of the Chicago design firm of Holabird, Root & Burgee. These designs dated to 1949 but construction did not begin on any facilities until after the beginning of the Korean War. At system completion, 16 of these command centers were built. The Command Center was designated as a Type 4 Site while the most common operations center configuration at the AC&W radar sites was the Type 2. The Type 2 Operations Center had similar characteristics to the Type 4 Direction Center except the operations centers were single story. The site designs included, where appropriate, a power plant, an administrative building and one or two radomes all incorporated into a secure compound. The Command Centers and the Operations Centers can be easily identified by a small louvered ventilation tower that rises above the roof.
The Manual System Direction Centers did not survive the transition into the SAGE System because they were far too small for the massive SAGE computers and consoles and did not have big enough power or HVAC plants. The radar site Type 2 operations centers did survive into the SAGE System but each one required the construction of an attached SAGE Annex for the large FST-2 computer system and later additions were necessary for those chosen as BUIC Sites.
The Norton Manual Direction Center P-84 remained operational until 1 Oct 1959 when the nearby Norton SAGE Direction Center DC-17 went operational.
The Norton Manual Direction Center is apparently abandoned on the former Norton Air Force Base (Now San Bernardino International Airport) in San Bernardino, California. Both the direction center and the power building still existed as of 28 Oct 2014, the date of our last visit.
Visited: 28 Oct 2014