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Transformation of LandWarNet Will Improve Joint Interoperability

One of the major Army initiatives highlighted at the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) annual meeting was the transformation of LandWarNet as part of the Global Network Enterprise Construct strategy. The goal is to transform LandWarNet over the next 3 years into a centralized and more secure network enterprise that can support warfighters in all operational phases and improve interoperability among all the armed services.

Speaking at the AUSA meeting, held 5 to 7 October in Washington, D.C., Lieutenant General Jeffrey A. Sorenson, the Army’s Chief Information Officer and Deputy Chief of Staff, G–6, called the current system dysfunctional. “We have a lot of different networks, we’ve built these up over time, and oh, by the way, they are spending a lot of money, and in some cases they are not maybe as secure as they need to be.” He said warfighters want LandWarNet to offer five features:

  • Access to and search capability for Army and joint warfighting data.
  • Global access to the network.
  • A single network infrastructure.
  • Common network policies and standards.
  • Access to web-based collaboration tools.

In order to provide the functions Soldiers have asked for and reduce costs over time, the G–6 has developed a standardization and modernization strategy that will be executed Army-wide. Sorenson said that standardizing and modernizing across the enterprise is less expensive than tackling separate networks and will increase the availability and continuity of information while ensuring increased protection.

Sorenson said the Army wants to give Soldiers the “Blackberry experience,” meaning that wherever they move, the network moves with them almost seamlessly. “This cannot be an Army deal,” said Sorenson. “This has got to be a joint deal, otherwise we’ve failed our warfighters when they get to theater.”

Attaining a mobile network will require consolidation of information technology (IT) assets across the Army. “Dell today essentially does worldwide operations with two data centers,” said Sorenson. “In the Army alone, we’ve got 447 locations here in CONUS [the continental United States] that touch the network.” Under the Global Network Enterprise Construct, the Army is consolidating networks and local servers under five Army network service centers (NSCs). The 5th Signal Command at Mannheim, Germany, established the first NSC to support the U.S. European Command area of responsibility. The Army will stand up NSCs in Southwest Asia and in CONUS this fiscal year, and the Pacific theater will receive its NSC in fiscal year 2011. (See related story that follows.)

Control of CONUS DOIMs Transfers to NETCOM

Thirty-seven installation directorates of information management (DOIMs) in the continental United States (CONUS) were reassigned from the Army Installation Management Command (IMCOM) to the Army Network Enterprise Technology Command (NETCOM)/9th Signal Command (Army) on 1 October 2009. The DOIMs are now known as Army signal network enterprise centers (NECs).

Consolidating all NECs under a single Army command will enable NETCOM to support the Army’s Global Network Enterprise Construct and develop the enterprise capabilities of regional network service centers to support all phases of joint operations. (See preceding story.)

The NECs will be managed by two brigades under the 7th Signal Command (Theater), the 93rd Signal Brigade at Fort Eustis, Virginia, and the 106th Signal Brigade at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. The 7th Signal Command (Theater), headquartered at Fort Gordon, Georgia, has been designated as the single enterprise network manager for CONUS. CONUS is the final theater to be organized under a theater signal command.

A plan to reassign all other CONUS DOIMs and DOIM-like organizations, including those under the Army Materiel Command and the Army Medical Command, to NETCOM will be implemented by fiscal year 2012.

Some DOIM functions will remain under IMCOM garrisons. These include photo laboratories; multi-media support; visual information broadcast, video, and audio support; graphic arts; visual information media and equipment support; Land Mobile Radio End-User Device procurement; records management; official mail and distribution; and forms and publication management.

New MRAP All-Terrain Vehicles Available to Soldiers in Afghanistan

The first mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) all-terrain vehicles (M–ATVs) arrived in Afghanistan on 5 October 2009. While some of the original MRAP vehicles weighed nearly 60,000 pounds, the M–ATV, developed by Oshkosh Defense, weighs 25,000 pounds. The lighter weight better meets the need for vehicles that can be driven over the difficult terrain in Afghanistan.

The M–ATV is designed for a driver, three passengers, and a gunner and features a v-shaped armored hull. Its independent suspension system, which it shares with the more recent family of medium tactical vehicles, provides improved off-road mobility.

Oshkosh Defense started delivering vehicles just 3 months after receiving the Department of Defense contract, enabling the MRAP Joint Program Office to fly the vehicles to Afghanistan earlier than initially planned. As of 11 November, Oshkosh had secured five contracts with the Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command to provide a total 6,219 M–ATVs plus spare parts and support services. The contracts are worth a total of $3.2 billion.

The company has received an additional contract for $33 million from TACOM to supply a rear-mounted camera system on more that 2,200 M–ATVs.

Oshkosh, which started production of 1,000 M–ATVs a month in December, plans to continue at this pace through at least March 2010.

Top Ten Inventions Protect Soldiers

The Army Materiel Command and the Army Research, Development and Engineering Command honored the Army’s “Top Ten Inventions of 2008” in Arlington, Virginia, on 21 September 2009. The event showcased the best Army technologies and their accomplishments, as chosen by deployed Soldiers.

Soldiers from the 1st Armored Division, 82d Airborne Division (Air Assault), and 25th Infantry Division voted on the nominations for this competition based on the technology’s impact on the Army’s war-fighting capabilities, potential benefit outside the Army, and inventiveness. This year, many of the winners protect the Soldier on the battlefield. The following items were recognized as the top ten inventions of 2008.

XM–153 Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station (CROWS), developed by the Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC), provides Soldiers with the capability to remotely aim and fire a suite of crew-served weapons while stationary or on the move. The CROWS provides increased protection to gunners and enhances target acquisition, identification, and engagement for nonturreted light-armored vehicles in day and night conditions.

Projectile Detection Cueing-CROWS Lightening, from ARDEC, is a low-cost acoustic gunfire detection system. It is capable of detecting the origin of incoming gunfire and provides quicker response to traditional attacks as well as enemy sniper fire.

Light machinegun and medium machinegun cradle, from ARDEC, provides a more stable and more accurate firing platform for the M249 squad automatic weapon and the M240B medium machinegun. The cradle eliminates the hazard of a full-length belt of ammunition hanging loose from the weapon and keeps rounds in line with the feeder tray to reduce machinegun stoppages caused by twisted ammunition.

Overhead cover for the objective gunner protection kit, designed by ARDEC, is an integrated armor and ballistic glass system that is mounted on the objective gunner protection kit of tactical and armored vehicles. It provides 360-degree protection from ballistic threats while maintaining the gunner’s visibility of his surroundings. An overhead cover protects against hand grenades, rocks, incendiary devices, and liquid acids.

Enhanced mobile rapid aerostat initial deployment vehicle, from the Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center, is a single platform boasting intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities that can be used by units that are operating remotely.

Whisper, developed by the Army Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center, is a passive detection device used by combat engineer companies in reconnaissance vehicles. The system features advanced electronic warfare equipment to detect radio-controlled improvised explosive device threats.

Combat gauze for treating hemorrhages in injured Soldiers, from the Army Institute of Surgical Research, gives medics a cost-effective hemostatic product to treat severe external bleeding. This is especially useful when a medic cannot apply a tourniquet. The product is a large, flexible roll of nonwoven gauze containing a contact pathway containing the clotting agent kaolin.

Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected Armor Weight Reduction Spiral Program, from the Army Research Laboratory, introduced lightweight composites, new materials, and enhanced ballistic mechanisms to reduce the add-on weight of final armor packages, while continuing to increase Soldier survivability.

Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected Expedient Armor Program add-on-armor kit, from the Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC), was developed to protect Soldiers from improvised explosive devices and explosively formed penetrators. The armor is 50-percent lighter that previous MRAP armor kits and increases protection without sacrificing vehicle performance.

One System Remote Video Terminal A-kit, from TARDEC, is a modular video and data system that provides the capability for Soldiers to receive near-real-time surveillance image and geospatial data remotely from tactical unmanned aerial vehicles and manned platforms. This improves the safety and speed at which Soldiers can recover vehicles and provides enhanced situational awareness for mission planning and intelligence gathering.


Field Manual (FM) 4–01.45, Multi-Service Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures for Tactical Convoy Operations, describes methods for conducting convoys with a focus on reducing casualties and increasing mission success. The newest version of the publication is reorganized into a “logical mission sequence of events,” from organizing, planning, and executing tactical convoy operations to post-mission responsibilities. The manual also includes current doctrine on avoiding and neutralizing improvised explosive devices and information on counter radio-controlled improvised explosive device electronic warfare systems.

FM 4–20.112, Airdrop of Supplies and Equipment: Rigging Typical Supply Loads, contains information on preparing and rigging bulk supplies, such as rations, fuels, lubricants, and ammunition, as well as tailored supply packages.

FM 4–20.113, Airdrop of Supplies and Equipment: Rigging Trailers, is another revised manual for the rigger’s library. It includes procedures for rigging new equipment in the Army inventory and updated procedures and equipment used by the airdrop community for loads dropped from C–130 and C–17 aircraft. The manual consolidates previous trailer-rigging manuals (FM 4–20.113, FM 10–532, FM 10–55, FM 10–569, and FM 10–591) and the information concerning trailers and trailer-mounted equipment into one publication.

Joint Publication 1–02, Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, continues to receive updates to align the publication with current doctrine on joint operations. The publication also indentifies terms approved for use by the Department of Defense and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). The dictionary only includes unclassified terms and continues to be available online at http://www.dtic.mil/

Army Unit Receives Top Honors at 2009 Secretary of Defense Maintenance Awards

The Department of Defense (DOD) honored the 1st Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, from Fort Hood, Texas, as the 2009 Phoenix Award Winner. The award, part of the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Awards, recognizes the unit as the top field-level maintenance unit among Active and Reserve component organizations throughout DOD.

While deployed to the Tigris River Valley in Iraq in 2008, the unit distinguished itself by achieving an operational readiness rate of 97 percent while maintaining a fleet of equipment that was 75 percent larger than the fleets normally authorized to a unit its size. The unit was spread over 24,000 square kilometers and provided more than 12,000 hours of maintenance training to Iraqi mechanics. The leaders accomplished this by adopting innovative techniques, such as cross-training maintenance technicians, adjusting operations and maintenance practices based on combat experiences, and modifying standing operating procedures.


AUSA Winter Symposium

The Association of the United States Army (AUSA) Institute of Land Warfare will hold its Winter Symposium and Exposition from 24 to 26 February at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

The professional development forum’s topic this year is “The Institutional Army: Enterprise Approach to Success.” For more information or to register, go to the AUSA website, www.ausa.org, and select “Meetings” on the lefthand-side of the screen.

Army Logistics Management College is Renamed and Reorganized

On 1 October 2009, one of the colleges of the Army Logistics University (ALU) at Fort Lee, Virginia, the Army Logistics Management College (ALMC), was renamed the College of Professional and Continuing Education.

“Army Logistics Management College” was also the name of ALU’s predecessor organization and comprised two schools. The School of Systems and Acquisition Management consisted of the Department of Systems Acquisition (DSA) and the Department of Systems Engineering (DSE). The School of Logistics Science consisted of the Logistics Executive Development Department (LEDD), the Tactical Logistics Leader and Development Department (TLLDD), and the Materiel Management Department (MMD).

The College of Professional and Continuing Education consists of four of those departments: LEDD (renamed the Department of Advanced Logistics Studies), MMD (renamed the Department of Stategic Logistics), DSA, and DSE.

See the March–April issue of Army Sustainment for an article on the College of Professional and Continuing Education.


Army Adapts Courses to Fit ARFORGEN

“Institutional adaptation” describes the Army’s recent efforts to mold courses at Army schools and training centers to better fit into the Army Force Generation (ARFORGEN) cycle.

During the Association of the United States Army annual meeting in Washington, D.C., Brigadier General Dana J.H. Pittard, the Deputy Chief of Staff, G–3/5/7, of the Army Training and Doctrine Command, explained some of the changes that will influence the flexibility of leader development.

“The Warrior Leader Course used to be 29 days, now it is 15 to 17 days, and it is also on the road,” said Pittard. “The shortening of the Advanced Leader Course, or the old BNCOC [Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course], to 8 weeks for most of the schools, [is] again bending our system to make sure that we are in support of ARFORGEN.”

Pittard said the Army is eliminating Basic Officer Leader Course (BOLC) Phase II. “We will now have BOLC A and BOLC B. Again, [we are] trying to get leaders, young lieutenants, out there quicker and trained in support of the ARFORGEN cycle.”

Mobile training teams will play a more prominent role in the future of the Army. Pittard said that 6 years ago mobile training teams were almost nonexistent. “This year alone, we have over 1,500 mobile training teams going out to where units are so that they can be trained at their home station.” Pittard said home-station training protects the little dwell time Soldiers have right now.

Balancing readiness with dwell time is one goal of institutional adaptation—a goal that falls in line with another goal set forth by General George W. Casey, Jr., the Chief of Staff of the Army, to put the force back in balance.

“We think that we have it about right at our combat training centers. We know that we must do much more work at home station training levels, at our institutional Army, as well as training deployed,” said Pittard.

Further changes lengthen warrant officer schooling to make room for training in leadership, knowledge management, project management, policy, strategy, globalization, and media relations.

Wiki-Functions Tested as a Tool for Improving Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures

The Army has tested a program that allows Soldiers and leaders to update field manuals (FMs) that describe tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) in a wiki environment in the same way that users can update Wikipedia entries. Staff from the Army Combined Arms Center’s Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, launched the test in an attempt to accelerate knowledge sharing as compared to the time-consuming staffing process traditionally used for revisions of these FMs.

TTP FMs will be renamed Army tactics, techniques, and procedures (ATTP). The Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) identified over 200 potential ATTPs during a doctrine reengineering study in May 2009.

During a forum at the Association of the United States Army annual meeting in October in Washington, D.C., Brigadier General Dana J.H. Pittard, TRADOC’s Deputy Chief of Staff, G–3/5/7, said once the FM reorganization is complete, only 94 FMs will remain. “We will put 215 field manual types, that we are calling the ATTP, the Army tactics, techniques and procedures, online on the Internet in a wiki approach, where, as a collaborative community, we are looking at our manuals and making corrections, just like you would with Wikipedia,” said Pittard. “We are finding that already in the pilot wiki manuals that we have out there that it is working very well.”

The program only piloted seven manuals, including those on risk management, Army unmanned aircraft systems operations, and knowledge management. The ATTP pilot is available through Army Knowledge Online through the self-service tab selection “My Doctrine” or at the Web address https://wiki.kc.us.army.mil/wiki/Portal:Army_Doctrine.

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