Accession Number:

ADA524340

Title:

The Sound of Freedom. Naval Weapons Technology at Dahlgren, Virginia, 1918-2006

Descriptive Note:

Monograph

Corporate Author:

NAVAL SURFACE WARFARE CENTER DAHLGREN DIV VA

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2006-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

449.0

Abstract:

This book tells the story of one part of the Navys research and development effort. Rooted in tradition and heritage traced directly back to the first efforts of Lieutenant Dahlgren to improve the scientific study of ordnance and naval weapons technology, our facility on the shores of the Potomac River started life at the end of the First World War, when the Navy needed a longer testing range than the existing facility at Indian Head, Maryland. Every major naval gun and every lot of ammunition had to be tested, not only to guarantee safety, but also to calculate the ballistic data necessary to ensure accuracy in fire control. The Naval Proving Ground at Dahlgren, Virginia, first known as the Lower Station of the Indian Head facility, soon expanded its mission area into other technologies such as aerial bombing and formally separated from Indian Head in 1932. Many of the types of research here were far ahead of their time. We see this in the previously little-known story of the attempt to develop automatic and remote-controlled aircraft that could serve as weapons, forerunners of modern missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles UAVs. Often the work at Dahlgren was highly secret, and only in later years could the details be released, as with the development of the Norden bombsight. Other once-classified stories, such as the development and testing of proximity fuzes, the ballistic experiments conducted on early scale models of the Little Boy atomic bomb, the ballistic experiments conducted on its later derivative, the Light-Case ground penetrator bomb, and Dahlgrens movement into the fields of computing technology and systems engineering, spell out the important role in the nations defense that the station has played over the years.

Subject Categories:

  • Humanities and History
  • Guided Missiles
  • Ammunition and Explosives
  • Guns

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE