Hoeven Reviews Completed Upgrades, Work in Progress at Cavalier Air Station

Senator Worked to Secure $65 Million to Fund Radar System Upgrades, New Dormitory Facility

CAVALIER, N.D. – Senator John Hoeven today toured the Cavalier Air Force Station to mark completion of upgrades to the station’s Perimeter Acquisition Radar Attack Characterization System (PARCS), which detects missile threats and monitors satellites and other space objects orbiting the earth. Hoeven also reviewed progress on projects to harden the facility against attack and provide improved housing for the men and women stationed there.

“All of the new upgrades, repairs and construction at the station are part of $65 million in appropriations aimed at bringing the station technologically and operationally to the cutting edge,” said Hoeven, who serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee. “The installation in Cavalier is a critical part of the advanced systems our military uses to track missile and space threats, as well as monitor the Arctic, and our job is to do all we can to support their mission.” A breakdown of the projects and funding is included below.

Already completed are upgrades and repairs to the PARCS system, the Security Forces Alert facility and other infrastructure at the station. The housing project, which began in 2013, includes a new dormitory for single service members to replace a temporary dormitory built in 1973. The new dormitory will be added to the security alert facility, which will be remodeled, making the facility more cost-efficient and compatible with the mission. Airmen and women will be able to occupy the new dorm in 2016.

The senator also reviewed progress on a new $18.5 million dollar project to protect the sensitive electronic equipment of PARCS from threats. Specifically, a High-Altitude Electromagnetic Pulse (HEMP) shell will shield the PARCS building against natural or man-made bursts or pulses of electromagnetic energy. The shell is expected to be completed by January 2016. The appropriations also include $25 million over five years to maintain and operate the crucial defense facility.

In April, Hoeven met with the commander of the 21st Space Wing to receive an update on these projects. The 10th Space Squadron, a unit of the 21st Space Wing, operates the station.

Approximately 40 Air Force personnel – along with about 75 Air Force civilian workers and defense contractors – are stationed at the Cavalier Air Force Station, which was created during the Cold War to provide missile warning. The installation has been modified over the years to also track objects in space, though, there have been limited upgrades to the station itself. Grand Forks Air Force Base provides support for the station, which includes providing security.

Cavalier Air Force Station Appropriations FY11-15

Facilities Construction, Sustainment and Repair:  $21.6 million

Key Facilities Projects:

  • Repair PARCS Facility $7.95 million
  • Repair Security Forces Alert Facility $2.67 million
  • Repair Wastewater Pond Liner $2.44 million
  • HVAC Repairs $1.28 million
  • Repair Fire Station $1.06 million

PARCS Procurement Funding: $43.5 million

  • High Altitude Electromagnetic Pulse upgrade $18.5 million
  • Radar operations and sustainment $25 million

($5 million per year average)

Total, Facilities and Procurement Funding, Cavalier AFS. FY11-15: $65.1 million