Dodge Division delivered system 1,470 on January 28, 1944, with 628 additional sets going to the U. S. Marine Corps, coast defense, and spares for a total of 2,098. Dodge had provided an average often complete systems per day. By mid-April, 1944, the machine tools and special equipment were moved out of Dodge Main's sixth floor, and the space converted to building B-29 engine pump parts. The SCR-584 residual pilot line equipment was moved to a Defense Plant Corporation warehouse in Indiana.
Operational Results Achieved By SCR-584 Radar-Guided Anti-Aircraft Systems In Combat
The SCR-584 achieved outstanding results in every theater of the war. In all cases, use of the equipment to direct the hurling of a deluge of 90mm antiaircraft shells saved Allied lives, both civilian and military. Originally contemplated as a defensive syste1l1, it soon proved vital to numerous offensive opportunities. Among hundreds of important episodes are the following:
Emergency At Italy's Anzio Beach. The initial shipments of SCR-584 systems were sent to North Africa in 1943 for training. When the flawed landing at Anzio in Western Italy turned sour, among the problems was the fact that the enemy successfully jammed the 268 radar. Two complete SCR-584s were rushed into the chaos on February 24, 1944 and dug-in up to their trailer rooftops over night. The next darkness saw twelve Nazi bombers entering beachhead air space only to lose seven aircraft to the 90mm guns directed by SCR-584. Abruptly, air attacks stopped for a week. A single plane appeared, to test the defenses-only to be destroyed. Ten more systems were emplaced that week, and effectively eliminated the air threat to Anzio.
Combating The V-I Flying Bomb. Twenty SCR-584s were assigned to England's Channel coast to reduce the number of V1 Flying Bombs hitting London. The eighty 90mm guns, using the new proximity-fused shells, destroyed hundreds of those weapons, including one August, 1944 Sunday when 97 of 101 were shot out of the sky. Overall, less than 10 percent of V-Is reached their targets.
Normandy: A Close-Run Action. The June 6, 1944 invasion included thirty-nine systems, performing to such deadly purpose as to thwart Luftwaffe attacks on the beaches. Given the extreme risks associated with crossing the Channel and penetrating Hitler's Atlantic Wall, SCR-584 helped provide the edge needed.
Excitement In The Bulge. German forces staged a powerful drive that penetrated the Ardennes Forest area-in 1940, as they outflanked the Maginot Line by an end run, thus forcing France's surrender. What had worked earlier, again seemed attractive to a nearly cornered Nazi High Command, and so it was. As USA forces fought back, to retrieve a tense situation, George Smith Patton's Third Army had to be pulled out of a committed battle, turned ninety degrees North, and launched toward Bastogne, 100 miles distant. Fortunately, SCR-584s were available to this amazing military movement and excellent use was made of them in blocking, containment, counter-attack, and resumption of offensive operations. During the first several days, only SCR-584- controlled tactical aircraft could be used, due to terrible weather conditions.
Radar's Role In Gaining The Eventual Victory
Historians and other writers working in the years following the close of World War II have varied in their positions as to the significance of this or that technological advance. As more information becomes available, through declassification or other sources, honest differences in view are normal. The war at sea differed completely from the Eastern Front in Russia. Many proponents of various air weapons remain staunch in their beliefs that air attack was the decisive factor. Perhaps all might agree that being able to read enemy signals was of decisive advantage in those cases where it could be done. Additionally, perhaps there might be agreement that being able to detect enemy forces in conditions of restricted visibility would be equally valuable.
In weighing radar's overall impact on the victory, consideration is due numerous advances in equipment and methods of use. Operations Research played a role. Massive production of materials and machines was vital. So too, was code-breaking including Ultra/Enigma (the Poles recovered an Enigma machine and managed to get it to the UK), details of which were held secret for decades following the end of the war. Applied use of radar, in all its forms and applications, was certainly the savior of the UK. If she had fallen, the liberation of Europe from Hitler's yoke would have been enormously complicated, and perhaps, impossible.
Dr. I. A. Getting, Aide to Dr. DuBridge, letter to K. T. Keller, October, 1945: "Those of us who have worked so closely with you and your engineers feel particularly sad that the closing of our Laboratory will also mean the end of this close association with you. I can honestly say that nowhere during the past five years have I met with a more efficiently administered engineering laboratory or a finer group of fellows than at the Chrysler Corporation."
Dr. LA. DuBridge, Director, Radiation Laboratory, letter to K. T. Keller, October, 1945: "No company has cooperated with us in a more patriotic and self-effacing way than the Chrysler Corporation. I have been deeply impressed by the efficiency and speed and ability of both your engineering and your manufacturing people. I am certain that the SCR-584 anti-aircraft radars would not have been completed in time or designed with such reliability had not your group played such an important role. "
Chrysler Corporation helped fill critical needs at a turning point for civilization.