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Fort Miles Experimental Firing Facility Target Tower

Fort Miles Experimental Firing Facility Target Tower

by 3DWarehouse
Last crawled date: 2 years, 6 months ago
Experimental Firing Facility Target Tower supported the highly classified WWII "Variable Time" (VT) Fuze Program conducted by the U.S. Army's Ordnance Research Center at Fort Miles.

The Ordnance Research Center's Experimental Firing Facility and Target Tower was part of the infrastructure of the VT fuze program. The whole purpose of the Experimental Firing Facility was to test VT Fuzes low against ocean waves using a 5"/38 Naval gun and simulating kamikaze attack methods. The research was needed as result of the kamikaze attacks which is why the model atop the target tower was set to show the "head on" aspect of a Japanese Nakajima Torpedo Bomber from Battery Herring.

A proximity fuze (also called a VT fuze) is a fuze that is designed to detonate an explosive device automatically when the distance to target becomes smaller than a predetermined value or when the target passes through a given plane.

A local historian researcher detailed that Cmdr. Van Allan wrote in his report that atop the tower was a model of a Japanese Nakajima Plane. Its reported that the unit assigned to the Fort Miles Ordnance Research Center had a firing line with 75mm, 90mm, 105mm, 6-inch, 8-inch, 240mm, and a Naval 5-in/38, firing an average of 180 rounds per day for VT fuze testing. The only reported specific reference to any noise was found in a book where it said the citizens of Rehoboth complained about it because the unit once fired at 0530 on a Sunday, which was unusual.

Fort Miles was a military WWII coast artillery harbor defense fort located on Cape Henlopen near Lewes, Delaware. The Fort Miles Historical Area (now part of the Cape Henlopen state park) was part of the WWII Harbor Defense of the Delaware defense system which protected the entry into the Delaware Bay.

Fort Miles was added to the National Register of Historic Places in April 2005.