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Developing an aiming device for level, horizontal bombing resulted in the Norden bombsight, virtually useless for skip bombing.
Sophisticated equipment developed at the facility has ranged from bombsights for World War II planes to a guidance system used in Tomahawk Cruise missiles during the Gulf War.
The most immediate beneficiary, Carl Norden, used Miricks system to synchronize the release of bombs, testing and calibrating experimental bombsights in the late 1920s.
As antiaircraft weapons improved, superchargers carried bombers above the effective range of flak; improved bombsights (Norden and Sperry) and formation pattern bombing compensated partially for the increased altitude.
With sophisticated instruments, including the Sperry and later Norden bombsights, the American bombers could theoretically hit targets, such as key factories or transportation hubs or oil refineries, with precision.
The facility has played a key role in national defense for more than 50 years, producing bombsights used by Allied planes in World War II and guidance systems used to deliver "smart bombs" in the Gulf War against Iraq.
Over the next two decades, de Seversky put his mechanical and business talents to work by founding Seversky Aircraft Corporation, designing not only aircraft, but also bombsights, instruments, and an air-refueling apparatus.
Nevertheless, Clark obtained information on the latest ideas on armament, bombing, and bombsights, and came away from the meeting convinced of the importance of providing defense armament in a 30-degree cone of fire directly to the rear of the aircraft.