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Army Depot Awarded 2009 Secretary of Defense Maintenance Excellence Award

Red River Army Depot, Texas, received top honors in the 2009 Department of Defense (DOD) Maintenance Awards, winning the Robert T. Mason Depot Maintenance Excellence Award for the Army’s Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) Vehicle Program. The maintenance award winners were announced 17 August.

DOD presents the awards annually to recognize outstanding achievements in military equipment and weapon systems maintenance. The MRAP vehicle program was recognized for providing exceptional and responsive support for the fielding and sustainment of MRAP vehicles through embedded maintenance support teams at numerous sites in Iraq. The 1st Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, at Fort Hood, Texas, won one of two field-level maintenance awards in the large [unit] category. The unit was recognized for its service to the Multi-National Division-North in Iraq.

Representatives from the other services received the other five awards. The Navy’s USS Harry S. Truman from Norfolk, Virginia, won the other award for the large category. The Navy’s USS Frank Cable, home ported in Apra Harbor, Guam, and Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 16, at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California, won awards in the medium category. The Air Force’s 31st Munitions Squadron, at Camp Darby, Italy, and the 6th/927th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida received awards for the small category.

The awards were presented at the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Awards banquet on 28 October during the 2009 DOD Maintenance Symposium and Exhibition in Phoenix, Arizona.

Senior Leaders Plan Reset and Readiness Changes

In support of the Army Enterprise, senior leaders Army-wide for the first time used the same criteria to analyze the readiness of Soldiers, units, and equipment at the Reset rehearsal of concept (ROC) drill held in Atlanta, Georgia, on 17 June. More than 70 general officers and civilian leaders participated in this large-scale strategy session to discuss Soldier readiness and identify recommendations for reducing combat strain by rebalancing combat cycles.

The ROC drill culminated an operational-level process review aimed at improving the Army’s readiness cycle. Traditionally, individual organizations perform readiness analyses by using separate review criteria. For the ROC drill, subject-matter experts from across the Army analyzed operational-level readiness and processes within their organizations using standardized criteria. The results were brought to the drill, where leaders reviewed the readiness of the Soldier life cycle from start to finish.

Each of the four Army Enterprise organizations—for readiness, human capital, services and infrastructure, and materiel—presented their results on readiness issues, such as training, equipment, manning, counseling, reintegration, health, and systems analysis. Conducting multiple analyses during the same event and jointly reviewing the results generated strategy-rich discussions on the opportunities and limitations of each organization’s efforts. The analyses created a great leveling field, allowing the four core organizations and multiple program offices to present their views, raise their concerns to strategic leaders, and address the needs of their “customers” as they relate to the readiness cycle. Leaders approved 24 recommendations and multiple organizational-level tasks that will improve processes.

The Army Enterprise is a new functional model developed as part of an organizational improvement campaign. This model quickly moves initiatives across and down functionally aligned business units. The Army Enterprise identifies clearer communication channels, more concise deployment strategies, and cleaner operational process improvements.

Army leaders say that the strain of accelerated deployments and the threats that are coming in
multiple shapes and sizes from multiple angles are overextending the force—making Soldiers, families, and communities restless from the stress of multiple deployments. To combat these challenges, senior leaders asked academic and corporate leaders to help assess the overall health of the Army. The diagnosis from these leaders is that the Army is not broken; it just needs to monitor itself better, continue exercising regularly, and adopt a new lifestyle to relieve the stress and restore balance to the force.

U.S. Drawdown Moves to Second Phase in Iraq

Multi-National Corp-Iraq (MNC–I) is in the second phase of drawdown operations to reduce the number of personnel, equipment, and bases in Iraq.

Lieutenant Colonel Tammie Pettit, MNC–I logistics planner, outlined how the drawdown started and will continue at an MNC–I conference at Camp Victory, Iraq, on 15 August. Nonessential equipment was identified during phase 1. In phase 2, that equipment is being retrograded, transferred, and redirected where U.S. and Iraqi forces need them. In phase 3, the focus will be on safety operations such as route security, additional drawdown, and support for redeploying units.

The drawdown includes a plan to transform nearly 200 bases into 6 multiclass supply support activities that will each have additional smaller bases. The hub-and-spoke facilities are slated to be completed by September 2010. The initiative works toward the larger goal of a complete withdraw from Iraq by December 2011.


Field Manual (FM) 4–0, Sustainment, is the Army’s new keystone doctrine for sustainment and replaces the 2003 edition of FM 4–0, Combat Service Support. Sustainment—one of the six warfighting functions established by FM 3–0, Operations—includes “the major sub-functions of logistics, personnel services, and health service support.” FM 4–0 provides a comprehensive outline of the many elements and services that are a part of sustainment and guidance on how the sustainment community supports full-spectrum operations. It also outlines how sustainment is planned, prepared, executed, and continuously assessed. The manual addresses modularity and roles and responsibilities for providing sustainment in unified actions. FM 4–0 is only available in digital format and can be accessed at Army Knowledge Online through the tab “My Doctrine.”

FM 4–02.2, Medical Evacuation, has been updated. The evacuation priority timetable in the medical evacuation support section (chapter 4, section 1) has been changed to reduce the amount of time Priority I patients can wait to be evacuated. Previously, Priority I status applied to “emergency cases that should be evacuated as soon as possible and within a maximum of 2 hours in order to save life, limb, or eyesight, to prevent complications of serious illness, or to avoid permanent disability.” The maximum time limit is now 1 hour, which requires senior leaders and senior medical personnel on the scene to use this rating to classify individuals who are to be evacuated as soon as possible.

Force Structure Changes Will Transform Sustainment Units

In August, the Army announced a number of activations, deactivations, and realignments affecting sustainment units across the Army.

Sustainment units that will activate at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, include the 44th Medical Brigade, 49th Quartermaster Tactical Water Distribution Platoon, 738th Engineer Support Company, and 919th Engineer Support Company. The 247th Quartermaster Company will activate at Fort Carson, Colorado, and the 79th Ordnance Company will activate at Fort Irwin, California.

Sustainment units inactivating include the 186th Quartermaster Company, 600th Quartermaster Company, 612th Quartermaster Company, and 44th Medical Command at Fort Bragg; the 196th Quartermaster Detachment and 106th Transportation, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment at Fort Campbell, Kentucky; and the 557th Maintenance Company at Fort Irwin.

Sustainment units that will realign into modular formations include Fort Bragg’s 503d Ordnance Company, 11th Quartermaster Company, 364th Quartermaster Supply Company, 647th Quartermaster Company, 127th Quartermaster Company, and 528th Medical Detachment; Fort Campbell’s 305th Supply Company, Fort Carson’s 230th Finance Company, and Fort Irwin’s 669th Maintenance Company.

The 101st Combat Support Battalion will also be converting to support the conversion of the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, to a modular heavy brigade combat team at Fort Riley, Kansas.

These force structure changes are expected to be completed by 2011 as part of integrated force structure changes that support the Army’s transformation requirements and the “Grow the Army” initiative.

New Fuel Management Equipment Tested

The 240th Quartermaster Battalion, 49th Quartermaster Group, at Fort Lee, Virginia, became the first Army unit to employ the Tactical Fuels Manager Defense (FMD) system and tactical automatic tank gauge (TATG) in a field environment. Soldiers used the new petroleum management equipment during Exercise Southbound Trooper IX at Fort Pickett, Virginia. (Southbound Trooper is a Canadian Army Reserve exercise conducted annually with U.S. Forces to prepare for joint international full-spectrum operations.)

FMD is an automated petroleum inventory-management system designed to efficiently capture petroleum usage and inventory data at the unit level. The Atlanta, Georgia-based company Varec Inc., a subsidiary of Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), engineered FMD to replace the existing tactical petroleum management process, which does not provide a level of detail that allows for an accurate view of the Army’s fuel consumption.

FMD uses queries that can report consumption statistics by vehicle, exercise, or date. This allows planners to more accurately predict fuel requirements and report fuel consumption data.

Automating fuel forms and establishing responsibility for account discrepancies make fuel accountability less subject to fraud. Good accountability also results from accurately gauging the amount of product distributed.

TATG replaces the manual four-point reference method as the primary gauge for the amount of fuel in a collapsible fabric tank. The four-point reference method uses a stick and string to measure the height of the fabric tank. The recorded height is verified against a strapping chart, which is used to convert feet and inches to gallons.

The Army Petroleum Center and Varec, Inc., helped to bring TATG on line and provided technical assistance during Southbound Trooper. In the exercise, TATG gauged the amount of fuel within .5 percent of the receipt meter, while the manual four-point method had a 10- to 12-percent difference from the receipt meter. TATG is also capable of recording gross and net quantities of fuel based on density and temperature.

In addition to using FMD and TATG, Soldiers used a portable hand-held device to document receipts and issues by aircraft tail number on the flight line. This device interfaces with the FMD system to transfer all the data and generates any required reports.


Sustainment Center of Excellence Developing Mobile Education Applications

The Sustainment Center of Excellence (SCoE) at Fort Lee, Virginia, is developing mobile education tools for Army portable devices on the Army’s secure online environment. The Lifelong Learning Branch of the Army Combined Arms Support Command Training Directorate’s Distance Learning Support and Integration Division, which specializes in Internet and distance learning development, has a new project team focused on developing mobile sustainment education software. The project includes the first suite of military iPhone applications for Fort Lee, Virginia.

The SCoE applications suite will give students easy access to course materials, locations and descriptions of classes, up-to-date military news articles, Army and SCoE podcasts, and Army reference materials, such as ebook-based technical manuals, field manuals, and Department of the Army pamphlets.

The SCoE suite will have a mapping application that will, using a phone’s global positioning system (GPS), provide driving and walking directions to buildings, floors, and rooms across Fort Lee. This tool can also link to a student’s course schedule, providing access to course information and walking directions to the location of that course.

“Podcaster” will give students access to video-based courseware, statements from commanding generals, and “lessons learned” leadership interviews.

The suite also will have a link to Army Sustainment, where students can access the latest articles and eventually provide live feedback to article content.

Although all mobile device application creation is currently being done through an Apple vehicle, the applications will eventually be available for all phones, mobile devices (such as eBook readers), and video gaming systems. The hope is that by covering as many platforms as possible, the Lifelong Learning Branch can immediately meet the educational needs of the Soldiers. The first set of applications is slated for availability in March 2010.

The Lifelong Learning Branch project team is comprised of Matt MacLaughlin, project manager/ branch chief; Diane Jenkins, analyst/beta tester; and Christopher Lawson, developer/designer. Readers interested in finding out more about the project can send an email to leeescoemobile@conus.army.mil.

Army Training Network Has New Tools

The Army Training Network (ATN) now includes links to more than 40 new training products. Launch-ed in April to accompany the newly revised Field Manual 7–0, Training for Full Spectrum Operations, and to replace FM 7–1, Battle Focused Training, ATN is the Army’s website for trainers and trainers-to-be. It features training management how-tos, training doctrine, answers from the experts, and links to training tools, such as training support packages.

Soon, ATN will also include videos on how to conduct company- and battalion-level training meetings, and plans are in the works to link the site to information from the Army Training Help Desk and the Battle Command Knowledge System’s Warrior Knowledge Base. The website is located at https://atn.army.mil.

New Pilot Program Provides Intermediate-Level Education to Logistics Warrant Officers

The Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, now has a pilot program that allows warrant officers to attend intermediate-level education (ILE), which has historically been offered only to commissioned field-grade officers. The 10-month course trains officers to be adaptive leaders and critical thinkers prepared for full-spectrum Army, joint, interagency, intergovernmental, and multinational operations.

Five warrant officers, including one quartermaster and two ordnance warrant officers, became the first graduates of the program in June. The College also has two quartermaster and two ordnance warrant officers on staff in the Department of Logistics and Resource Operations. Warrant officers interested in attending ILE should contact their assignment managers at the Army Human Resources Command.

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