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Tilghman Island Multiple Research Site

The Chesapeake Bay Detachment [CBD] occupies a 168-acre site near Chesapeake Beach, Maryland, and provides facilities and support services for research in radar, electronic warfare, optical devices, materials, communications, and fire research. Because of its location high above the Chesapeake Bay on the western shore, unique experiments can be performed in conjunction with the Tilghman Island site 16 km across the bay from CBD. Some of these experiments include low clutter and generally low background radar measurements. By using CBD's support vessels, experiments are performed that involve dispensing chaff over water and radar target characterizations of aircraft and ships.

Tilghman Island was first charted Captain John Smith in 1608. Established in 1650, Tilghman Island was settled within the earliest stages of American history. In the years following its settlement, a succession of owners make good use of the rich soil for raising livestock, feed, fruit and timber. Originally called "Great Choptank Island", it was known also as Foster's Island, then Ward's Island, until finally the Tilghman Family name stuck. In the early 19th century, parcel of land were sold to oystermen who wanted to be near the prime harvesting grounds surrounding Tilghman Island. By the turn of the century, steamboat service had been established, as had a thriving seafood industry, The island eventually became a popular haven for vacationers.

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