Pinetree Progress Reports

National Archives of Canada

Pinetree Progress Reports
Report No. 13
Dated 15 August 1953

Page 1 of 11


This project involves the construction, installation and operation of thirty-three radar stations in Canada which have been integrated into the over-all joint defence of the North American continent. Pinetree stations may be considered under the following headings:


This group of eleven sites (C-1 Mont Apica, C-2 Lac St. Denis, C-3 Foymount, C-4 Edgar, C-5 Ste. Marie, C-7 Parent, C-8 Senneterre, C-9 Falconbridge, C-18 Holberg, C-35 Comox and C-36 Tofino), primarily designed for the defence of Canadian centres, is being financed and manned by the RCAF. Construction, equipment deliveries and installation for these eleven sites has been completed to a stage where seven of the Eastern sites (sites 1 to 4, 7, 8 and 9) are now engaged in limited operations. Installation is now underway at site 5. Equipment delivery for site 18 is scheduled for Aug 53, with the installation to follow up in Sep 53. Equipment for sites 35 and 36, on which construction has been finished, is in the process of manufacture, with delivery scheduled for 1954.


To increase radar facilities for the joint defence of the United States and Canada, twenty-two more stations, located in Canada, are being provided. The twenty-two sites in this Radar Extension Plan (“R.E.O.)” are financed by USAF which is manning seventeen of them, with the remaining five to be manned by RCAF personnel. The R.E.P. may be considered as falling into two sections as noted below:


This portion consists of twelve stations, four on the Eastern Coast (Sites 6 Ste. Marie, 11 Halifax, 33 Moisie and 34 Sydney) to be manned by the RCAF and eight sites stretched out north of the Great Lakes and into the interior of British Columbia (Sites 10 Ramore, 14 Pagwa, 15 Armstrong, 16 Sioux Lookout, 17 Beausejour, 19 Puntzi Mountain, 20 Baldy Hughes and 21 Saskatoon Mountain referred to as USAF ADC sites), manned by USAF personnel. Construction on the four eastern sites has been completed, with the exception of minor items, and equipment deliveries have begun. Two (sites 33 and 34) are scheduled for limited operations this fall and the other two (sites 6 and 11) for mid-winter. Construction on the eight USAF-operated sites has been completed, equipment is in the process of delivery and installation and they are all scheduled to be conducting limited operations by this fall. Temporary operations at these eight sites have been ongoing since April, using mobile TPS-1D radars.


This portion is a chain of ten stations situated in Newfoundland, Labrador and the Canadian sub-Arctic. (sites 22 to 31), all of which are USAF-manned, except site 25 which is to be manned by the RCAF. These are referred to as “NEAC” (Northeast Air Command) sites. Construction on four of these (sites 22 St. John’s, 23 Stephenville, 24 Goose Bay and 25 Gander) has been virtually completed and equipment deliveries are in progress. Construction on the remote northern stations is scheduled to be substantially completed during the summer except Site 30 (Resolution Island) which has had to be rescheduled for Aug 54. Most major equipments for these isolated sites have been delivered to Newark Transportation Control Depot for transshipment during the short summer period when ice conditions permit shipping operations.

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These operations are coordinated by Pinetree Project Office, which is jointly staffed by USAF, RCAF and Department of Defence Production (Canada). Equipment procurable in Canada is purchased by the USAF through contracts with the Canadian Commercial Corporation, a Canadian Government agency, which in turn deals with Canadian suppliers through the Department of Defence Production. Some items, which are not practicable to produce in Canada, are being furnished from USAF stocks or from current USAF production contracts. Officials of the Department of National Defence (Canada) Inspection Services (DND/IS) are responsible for inspecting and certifying equipment production at Canadian factories. Contracts for the installation of equipment, antenna farms, outside telephone plant etc., on R.E.P sites have been let by the Department of defence Production to five major Canadian electronic firms:

Northern Electric Company Ltd. Sites 10, 14, 15 and 16
RCA Victor Co. of Canada Ltd. Sites 33 and 34
Canadian Aviation Electronics Ltd. Sites 17, 19, 20 and 21
Canadian General Electric Company Ltd. Sites 6, 11, 22, 23 and 25
Canadian Marconi Company Ltd. Sites 24, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 and 31

Installation of equipment on the sites is checked by Inspection Services representatives who ensure that installation specifications, as produced by Pinetree Telecommunications Engineering Group, are met. When an equipment installation is completed to the satisfaction of the DND/IS inspector and the Pinetree Office representative on the site and the necessary flight checks carried out to prove operation of the radar, the station equipment is turned over to the operating agency.

A maintenance contract at depot level, for NEAC sites (except Site 25, Gander) has been let to Canadian Marconi Co. Ltd. And for USAF ADC sites to Canadian Aviation Electronics Ltd.


a – Landline requirements for Pinetree sites other than NEAC sites are practically all either available on a call-up basis varying from 48 hours to 30 days, or are already in service. Construction of special radio links has been necessary to provide landline connections for two sites in British Columbia (Sites 19 Puntzi Mountain and 20 Baldy Hughes). Carrier equipment will be completed for these links in Dec 53 and operating circuits will be available on a limited basis 15 Jan 54, with completion scheduled for Feb 54.

b – The communication system for the seven Eastern RCAF-financed-and-operated-sites (Sites 1 to 4 and 7 to 9) utilizes a main microwave system plus some landlines, known as “ADCOM” and now connects RCAF Air Defence Command HQ at St. Hubert, Que., with Sites 1, 2, 3 and 4. The microwave system is 50% completed to a peace-time scale, with the remaining portions of Sites 7, 8 and 9 scheduled for completion in Jan 54. Where the microwave is not yet completed, temporary landlines are in use. VHF air-ground-air equipment is installed on all sites except Site 7 and 8. Interim back-up HF radio nets are in operation, with the exception of Sites 7 and 8 where installation is still under way.

c – Landline requirements in Newfoundland – In order to provide for the increase in circuits necessitated by the Pinetree program in Newfoundland, a cable carrier system is to be installed on existing USAF-owned cable running across the island from Harmon Field via Gander to Fort Pepperrell. Proposals for this equipment have been submitted by various manufacturers and are under review by DDP and Pinetree Office. A contract has been let to Canadian National Telegraphs for the instruction of tail cables to connect the various radar sites, etc. to the carrier terminals. This contract will include a distribution cable to the GCI radar site at Stephenville from the carrier terminal at Harmon; connecting cables from the carrier system at Gander to the Goose Bay-Gander microwave terminal and to the Gander radar site. Remote receiver and transmitter site connections for Gander radar site are also included. At St. John’s the tail cables will connect the carrier terminal at Pepperrell to the ADCC and to the GCI site. The cables to remote receiver and transmitter sites and Torbay air base are also included in the contract.

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d – NEAC Microwave – In the northern areas where no landlines are available it is proposed to furnish primary communications for such sites by microwave links to all but the two most northerly stations, where VHF radio links will be used. An overall management contract for the southern portion of the microwave system has been let to the Bell Telephone Co. of Canada. This part of the system will link up Goose Bay, via Cartwright and St. Anthony, to Gander, where landline facilities will be available. The Department of Defence Production has requested proposals from selected Canadian manufacturers on microwave equipment to meet Pinetree Project Office specifications.


Pinetree secondary communications for all sites are to be provided by HF radio links to back up the primary landline or microwave systems. In addition, due to radio wave propagation conditions in sub-Arctic areas, most NEAC sites will use LF back-up radio links.


Air-ground-air communications at all sites will utilize both VHF and UHF radio.

Stations financed and manned by RCAF

Site 1

Mont Apica, Quebec

Site 2

Lac St. Denis, Quebec

Site 3

Foymount, Ontario

Site 4

Edgar, Ontario

Site 5

Chatham, New Brunswick

Site 7

Parent (McCarthy), Quebec

Site 8

Senneterre, Quebec

Site 9

Falconbridge, Ontario

Site 18

Holberg, British Columbia

Site 35

Comox, British Columbia

Site 36

Tofino, British Columbia

Stations financed by USAF and manned as shown.

a – Interior of Canada Sites

Site 6 Ste. Marie, Quebec RCAF
Site 10 Ramore, Ontario USAF
Site 11 Halifax, Nova Scotia RCAF
Site 14 Pagwa, Ontario USAF
Site 15 Armstrong, Ontario USAF
Site 16 Sioux Lookout, Ontario USAF
Site 17 Beausejour, Manitoba USAF
Site 19 Puntzi Mountain, British Columbia USAF
Site 20 Baldy Hughes, British Columbia USAF
Site 21 Saskatoon Mountain, Alberta USAF
Site 33 Moisie (Clarke City), Quebec RCAF
Site 34 Sydney, Nova Scotia RCAF

b – Newfoundland, Labrador and Arctic Sites

Site 22 St. John’s, Newfoundland USAF
Site 23 Stephenville, Newfoundland USAF
Site 24 Goose Bay, Labrador USAF
Site 25 Gander, Newfoundland RCAF
Site 26 St. Anthony, Newfoundland USAF
Site 27 Cartwright, Labrador USAF
Site 28 Hopedale, Labrador USAF
Site 29 Saglek, Labrador USAF
Site 30 Resolution Island, NWT USAF
Site 31 Frobisher Bay, Baffin Island USAF

Installation Crews

Installation crews are working on the following REP sites as of 15 Aug 53; Ramore, Pagwa, Armstrong, Sioux Lookout, Beausejour, Puntzi Mountain, Goose Bay, Gander, St. Anthony, Cartwright and Hopedale.

Limited Operations

AN/FPS-3 prime radar facility at Ramore was accepted by USAF 11 Aug 53. Acceptance of AN/FPS-3 prime radar facility at Pagwa is in progress.

Limited Operation Dates

Limited operation dates on the following sites have changed since last report: Gander, Goose Bay and St. John’s.

Pages 4 to page 8 of 11 are missing.

Page 9 of 11

Pinetree Project – Radar Extension Plan – Equipment Availability Schedule – 15 Aug 53

Matrix to show progress.

Page 10 of 11

Pinetree Project – Radar Extension Plan – Telecommunications Equipment Requirements as at 15 Aug 53

Matrix to show progress.

Page 11 of 11 is missing.

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