USS Rancocas

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Vice Admiral James H. Doyle, Jr. Combat System Engineering Development Site

USS Rancocas (LS-1) is the former name of an engineering development facility at the border between Moorestown Township and Mount Laurel Township, New Jersey.[1][2] In May 2008, it was formally renamed the Vice Admiral James H. Doyle, Jr. Combat System Engineering Development Site (CSEDS).[3]

It is located between Hartford Road and County Route 537 in Moorestown and looks like a warehouse with the superstructure of a planned, but never built naval strike cruiser sitting on the roof. The design of the superstructure was later incorporated into the design of the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer. The facility was initially constructed for the United States Air Force in 1958, to support AN/FPS-49 Ballistic Missile Early Warning System development. It briefly operated as a sensor for the SPACETRACK program[4] but was transferred to the U.S. Navy and refurbished in 1976 to support Aegis Combat System development. It is still used by Lockheed Martin for Aegis research and development, and houses not only Navy and Lockheed Martin personnel, but personnel from numerous subcontractors, such as Mission Solutions Engineering and Northrop Grumman. The New Jersey Historic Preservation Office has declared the Vice Admiral James H. Doyle, Jr. Combat System Engineering Development Site eligible for listing in the New Jersey Register of Historic Places.[5]

Formally commissioned in 1977,[6] it is a Navy-owned building, staffed by Navy personnel attached to Aegis Technical Representative (AEGIS TECHREP), which is an Echelon 3 field activity under Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA).[7]

Because the facility is plainly visible from Interstate 295 and the New Jersey Turnpike,[8] it has become something of a landmark for local residents and travelers. Area residents frequently refer to it as the "Cornfield Cruiser" or "Cruiser in a Cornfield."[9]

An AN/SPY-1 antenna array damaged in the USS Cole bombing was later refurbished and installed in CSEDS.[10]

Naval Facilities Engineering Command completed a large extension to the original building in early 2015.[11][12]

In 2020, an AN/SPY-6(V)1 array was installed at the Combat System Engineering Development Site to support testing.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Aerial Photo Archived 2008-12-26 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed August 22, 2009.
  2. ^ USGS Maps, Used to determine municipal boundaries, Accessed August 22, 2009.
  3. ^ NAVSEA page on AEGIS TECHREP Archived 2015-07-07 at the Wayback Machine, used to get date that the building was renamed, Accessed December 21, 2014
  4. ^ Moorestown's Giant Golf Ball Archived 2019-06-06 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed March 11, 2016
  5. ^ NJ DEP – Historic Preservation Office, New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places, Burlington County Archived 2014-11-07 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed March 11, 2016
  6. ^ "USS Rancocas: The Cornfield Cruiser". Lockheed Martin. Archived from the original on 2019-07-19. Retrieved 2019-07-19.
  7. ^ Navy Shore Activities and Detachments Archived 2017-01-26 at the Wayback Machine used to determine relationship of Navy commend, Accessed December 21, 2014[dead link]
  8. ^ Google Street View from New Jersey Turnpike Archived 2020-11-22 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed June 15, 2016
  9. ^ Philadelphia Inquirer "'Cornfield Cruiser' helps Navy improve combat system" Archived 2016-08-05 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed June 15, 2016[dead link]
  10. ^ USS Cole Antenna Refurbished for Fleet Support Archived 2014-12-21 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed December 21, 2014
  11. ^ Construction Project P-237 Addition to Combat System Engineering Development Site (CSEDS) Building at Moorestown, NJ Archived 2014-12-21 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed December 21, 2014[dead link]
  12. ^ Lockheed Martin, Navy expand Moorestown site Archived 2020-11-22 at the Wayback Machine, Accessed March 11, 2016
  13. ^ Navy’s ‘Cruiser in the Cornfield’ Gets Radar Upgrade

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°58′49.2″N 74°54′04.4″W / 39.980333°N 74.901222°W / 39.980333; -74.901222