|Eastern Air Defense Sector|
Eastern Air Defense Sector Emblem
|Branch||United States Air Force New York Air National Guard|
|Decorations||Air Force Outstanding Unit Award|
Air Force Organizational Excellence Award
The Eastern Air Defense Sector (EADS) is a United States Air Force Air Combat Command (ACC) unit permanently assigned to the North American Aerospace Defense Command. A joint, bi-national military organization, EADS is composed of U.S. and Canadian military forces, federal civilians and contractors. It is located at the Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome, New York, the former Griffiss Air Force Base. EADS is a subordinate command of the Continental NORAD Region-1st Air Force, headquartered at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida.
Its mission is to counter all air threats to EADS' assigned Area of Operations through vigilant detection, rapid warning and precise tactical control of NORAD and NORTHCOM forces.
In 1958, in response to the threat of long-range Soviet bombers, the U.S. and Canada signed a treaty creating the bi-national North American Air Defense Command (NORAD), responsible for both countries’ air defense and air sovereignty. Air Defense Sectors were established soon after, including the New York Air Defense Sector (NYADS) headquartered at McGuire Air Force Base, New Jersey. Responsibility for air defense of the Northeast changed with various reorganizations. In 1983, the 24th Air Division was assigned to Griffiss Air Force Base to provide air defense for the Northeast. In 1987, NEADS was activated and co-located with the 24th AD.
In December 1994, the New York Air National Guard assumed primary responsibility for manning the Northeast Air Defense Sector (NEADS), as it was then known. EADS's area of responsibility covers more than 180 million Americans.
The Air National Guard provides the majority of the forces for the NORAD mission. At EADS, this responsibility belongs to the New York Air National Guard's 224th Air Defense Group. The 224th ADG consists of the 224th Air Defense Squadron, the 224th Support Squadron and two detachments in the Washington, D.C. area.
In total, EADS has more than 400 full- and part-time military and civilian personnel. This includes a 15-member Canadian Forces detachment and Army, Navy, Coast Guard and Federal Aviation Administration liaison officers. These personnel work side-by-side with the 224th ADG and are fully integrated into every aspect of the unit.
EADS Detachment 1 serves at the Joint Air Defense Operations Center (JADOC) at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, D.C. Commanded by U.S. Army National Guard air defense units that serve year-long rotations, the JADOC is responsible for the National Capital Region's Integrated Air Defense System (IADS). Detachment 1, composed of 39 New York ANG members, is the permanent Air Force component at the JADOC.
Detachment 2 serves at the National Capital Region Coordination Center (NCRCC) in Herndon, Virginia. Operated by the Transportation Security Administration, the NCRCC is a fusion center that enables the federal agencies responsible for defending the NCR airspace to share information in real time. The seven New York ANG members at Detachment 2 are responsible for correlating, coordinating and rapidly sharing threat information with EADS Battle Control Center in Rome.
The Eastern Air Defense Sector is one of two Sectors responsible for the air defense of the continental United States. The other sector is the Western Air Defense Sector (WADS).
The Eastern Air Defense Sector is one of two Air National Guard operational headquarters (together with the Western Air Defense Sector), providing air defense command and control for the ANG's fighter wings based in the Contiguous United States. The two sector headquarters report to the active force First Air Force. The EADS is a New York Air National Guard unit based in Rome. It has operational command and control over the following fighter units:
The Sector's history begins on 1 April 1956 when the 4621st Air Defense Wing was organized. The sector's predecessors, the 4709th Defense Wing (later 4709th Air Defense Wing) and the 52d Fighter-Interceptor Wing had performed the air defense mission at McGuire AFB, New Jersey since 1949.
The wing operated a Manual Air Direction Center (MDC) at Roslyn AFS, New York. It was redesignated as the New York Air Defense Sector (NYADS) on 1 October. The sector's mission was to train and maintain tactical flying units in state of readiness in order to defend Northeast United States while initially continuing to operate the MDC.
The organization was in large part responsible for one of the foundational projects of the computer era: the development of the SAGE (Semi-Automatic Ground Environment) air defense system, from its first test at Bedford, Massachusetts, in 1951, to the installation of the first unit of the New York Air Defense Sector of the SAGE system, in 1958.
The idea for SAGE grew out of Project Whirlwind, a World War II computer development effort, when the War Department realized that the Whirlwind computer might anchor a continent-wide advance warning system. Developed during the 1950s by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Lincoln Laboratories engineers and scientists for the U.S. Air Force, SAGE monitored North American skies for possible attack by manned aircraft and missiles for twenty-five years. Aside from its strategic importance, SAGE set the foundation for mass data-processing systems and foreshadowed many computer developments of the 1960s. The heart of the system, the IBM AN/FSQ-7 computer, was the first computer to have an internal memory composed of "magnetic cores," thousands of tiny ferrite rings that served as reversible electromagnets. SAGE also introduced computer-driven graphic displays, online keyboard terminals, time-sharing, high-availability computation with a redundant AN/FSQ-7 to fail over if the primary system went down, digital signal processing, digital transmission over leased telephone lines, digital track-while-scan, digital simulation, computer networking, and duplex computing.
The SAGE Direction Center DC-01 General Curtis E. LeMay was the guest speaker. He described SAGE as, "A system centralizing many air defense functions, minimizing manual tasks and allowing electronic devices to perform hundreds of complex computations accurately and simultaneously to improve air defense capability."was activated on 1 July 1958, the first sector to achieve this status. In a ceremony marking this achievement,
On 1 April 1966, the NYADS was inactivated, as were the other 22 sectors in the country. The SAGE system remained active until replaced in 1983 by newer technology Joint Surveillance System (JSS). The 3-story DC-01 SAGE building, with reinforced 3' concrete walls and roof now hosts the Headquarters, 21st Expeditionary Mobility Task Force, Air Mobility Command at McGuire AFB.
On 1 July 1987, four of the previous ADCOM Air Defense sectors were reactivated, redesignated, assigned and colocated with the four remaining air divisions.
The ADTAC Air Divisions were inactivated.
In the mid-1990s, the Air National Guard (ANG) assumed responsibility for leading U.S. air defense. ANG flying units had performed the air defense mission for decades. But after the changeover, activated Guardsmen provided the command and staff for the Continental U.S. NORAD Region and its subordinate Sector HQs. All reported to First Air Force. The Northeast Sector was the first to transition. In December 1994, the New York Air National Guard activated the Northeast Air Defense Squadron to staff the Sector HQ.
In the aftermath of the 9-11 attacks, the Northeast Air Defense Sector pioneered many of the changes that now allow it to build a detailed internal air picture to identify and engage air threats originating from within North America. In addition to the Battle Control Center in Rome, NEADS helped establish and maintain two detachments in the National Capital Region to defend critical assets and improve interagency communication.
On 1 November 2005, the NEADS and SEADS consolidated, giving the Northeast Air Defense Sector (NEADS) the responsibility of providing detection and air defense for the entire eastern half of the United States. NEADS was officially re-designated the Eastern Air Defense Sector (EADS) on 15 July 2009.
The Northeast Air Defense Squadron (NY ANG) formally became the 224th Air Defense Group in December 2014.