Missile Test Sites > Cape Canaveral Air Force Station >
Launch Complexes 1-2
- Tethered Aerostat Radar System (TARS)
- Helicopter pads for Mercury
- $930,098 for the launch complex
- Pads $50,000 each
- Tunnels to pads $95,500 each
- Blockhouse $280,384
Launch Complex Highlights
- 18 October 1951 - Contract
awarded to build two launch complexes for the Snark
- 26 October 1951 - 15 November 1952 - Construction of the complex.
- 30 June 1953 - Air Force accepted Pad 1
- 30 November 1953 - Air Force accepted Pad 3
- Originally located at the
intersection of Central Control Road and Lighthouse
Road before Launch Complex 36 was built
- 29 August 1952 - 5 December 1960 - 94 Snark and
3 dummy Snark launched.
- 20 June 1951 - First Matador launch.
- Matador were launched from
truck mounted launchers located in several cleared
areas east of Pads 1 and 2 using sandbagged above
ground bunkers as launch control points. The
Matadors were brought to these pads for launching
when construction was completed.
- 1957-1958 - Metal semi-permanent preflight
buildings 1 and 2 were constructed northwest of the pads
to serve as a test shop for the missiles. Pre-launch shelters were
metal shelter with canvas awnings on wheels.
- Constructed for the Snark winged
missile program, the blockhouse had four-inch thick
tempered laminated glass. The image was received
through the glass and reflected downward and inward
to the observers using a pair of mirrors and another
tempered glass window. Blockhouse was 2,172 square feet. The tunnels to the pads were 4'-8' wide
and 7.6' high. An observation deck was on top of the
- Each reinforced concrete launch
pad was 100 x 200 feet, 8 inches thick and the
blockhouse was about 100 feet from the pads. The
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was the contractor.
- 1 June 1961 - Last Matador launch.
- Total of 286 Matador launches
from the Cape
- 1962 - Launch complex deactivated as a missile site
and later served as a staging area for amphibious
rescue vehicles and a helicopter pad for the Mercury
and Gemini programs.
- 1983 - 1989 - Complexes supported Tethered
Aerostat Radar System (balloon) for coastal
- Mid-1990s - Both pads completely
deactivated and presently