National Guard Troops Respond to Hurricane Irene
More than 7,600 National Guardsmen from 18 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico responded to civil authorities dealing with Hurricane Irene-related emergencies during the last weekend of August. During this disaster, National Guard coordination was greatly improved by the use of three new resources: a new National Guard Coordination Center (NGCC) in Arlington, Virginia, dual-status commanders authorized to command national and state troops in an emergency, and the deployment of strategically placed force packages before the storm.
Air Force General Craig McKinley, the chief of the National Guard Bureau, explained that the coordination center gave the National Guard the capability to coordinate with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Northern Command, and the District of Columbia, as well as the states and territories, to ensure the most effective support to civil authorities.
McKinley added that the NGCC enabled the National Guard to "bring the full benefit of our size, skills, training, experience, command and communications infrastructure, and legal flexibility to the whole-of-government response to the storm."
In response to the disaster, National Guardsmen—
- Provided maritime transportation to the islands of Vieques and Culebra in Puerto Rico.
- Flew helicopters from Alaska, Florida, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Ohio to stand by in the affected region for search and rescue, damage assessment, transportation, and other missions.
- Provided search and rescue, security, and transportation in North Carolina.
- Provided engineer support and equipment staging in Virginia.
- Helped transportation officials control traffic in the District of Columbia.
- Aided in recovery efforts to rescue people stranded by floodwaters in a hotel in upstate New York.
- Filled sandbags and assessed damages in Massachusetts.
- Supported communications in Rhode Island.
- Handed out cots and supplies in Delaware.
- Provided shelter in New Jersey.
- Cleared debris and performed high-water search and rescue missions in Connecticut.
- Provided mission command support in Maine.
|Virginia Army National Guardsmen unload pallets
of cots and meals ready-to-eat in Sandston, Virginia, in preparation for response to Hurricane Irene. (Photo by Cotton Puryear, Virginia Department of Military Affairs)
TRANSCOM Holds Exercises in Conjunction With National Level Exercise 2011
In May, the U.S. Transportation Command (TRANSCOM) participated in National Level Exercise (NLE) 2011—a White House-directed, Congressionally mandated exercise to test the Government's response to catastrophic earthquakes—by holding Turbo Challenge 2011 and Ultimate Caduceus 2011.
Turbo Challenge is a tier 1 command post exercise, and Ultimate Caduceus concentrates on testing patient transport capabilities. The TRANSCOM exercises gauged the command's readiness to—
- Plan and conduct mobility forces deployment and patient movements in support of Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) requirements in a cyber-constrained environment.
- Plan logistics sustainment for Defense support of civil authorities.
- Conduct fused planning and manage current operations.
- Demonstrate continuity of operations in a physically degraded environment.
A deployment training team from the Joint Warfighting Center, U.S. Joint Forces Command, observed the exercise and noted TRANSCOM's accomplishments in operation plan execution, medical planning and operations, and cyber awareness.
The TRANSCOM exercises were two of several
exercises held as part of NLE 2011. Others included Positive Response 2011 (a Joint Chiefs of Staff exercise), NORTHCOM's Ardent Sentry 2011, and the Department of Health and Human Services' Noble Life Saver 2011.
Reservists Test Skills During Nationwide Quartermaster Liquid Logistics Exercise
From 1 to 17 June, the Quartermaster Liquid Logistics Exercise 2011 provided Army Reserve Soldiers from across the country a chance to hone their quartermaster skills. The exercise was held at Fort Pickett, Fort A.P. Hill, Fort Eustis, and Fort Story, Virginia; Fort Dix, New Jersey; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Fort Huachuca, Arizona; and San Pedro, California.
The exercise allowed Soldiers to drive fully loaded 5,000- to 7,000-gallon fuel trucks, operate and maintain field laboratory equipment and reverse osmosis water purification units, and experiment with the mobile expeditionary water packaging system that bottles purified water. The exercise also tested other quartermaster functions, such as laundry, tailoring, bath and shower services, laboratory testing of potable water, and inspections of field conditions.
|A Soldier from the 973d Quartermaster Company assists an officer from the 1893d Medical Detachment in obtaining a water sample from a bladder of purified water to be tested for microbacterial contamination during the nationwide Quartermaster Liquid Logistics Exercise 2011. (Photo by SFC Jo Hoots, 214th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)
Construction of New Defense Logistics Agency Distribution Center Underway in Europe
In early 2012, the new 250,000-square-foot Logistics Distribution Center Europe in Germersheim, Germany, will be ready to house all Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) Europe offices and supply chain operations.
The $25 million building will enable DLA to support Soldiers in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa more effectively by consolidating its business functions, such as receiving, storing, issuing, cross-docking, and transporting supplies, under one roof. The new facility will increase the distribution center's storage and transportation capability by increasing the number of its bays from 9 to 26 and will improve efficiency by eliminating redundancy in materials handling.
In addition to giving Soldiers better service, the new building will also be environmentally friendly, boasting a biomass heating system that will allow the center to generate close to 100 percent of its heating on site. The building will also have rooftop solar panels to generate electricity, energy-efficient lighting, extensive skylights, and radiant-heat flooring.
Energy Initiatives Office Task Force Established
On 10 August, Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh announced the establishment of the Energy Initiatives Office (EIO) Task Force to help address the rising energy security challenges, escalating fuel prices, and stricter Federal energy mandates facing the Army. The task force is part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment and will centrally manage the development of large-scale renewable energy projects for the Army.
Army installations have been interested in building renewable energy infrastructure, but they often lack the expertise needed to develop these projects. Through the task force, the Army plans to conduct an aggressive outreach effort to attract and engage private industry to foster strategic and financial collaborations in support of the Army's installation energy needs. (The Army's current goal is to have 25 percent of its energy coming from renewable sources by 2025.)
The renewable energy that the Army needs to produce in order to achieve enhanced energy security is estimated to require an investment of up to $7.1 billion over the next 10 years. This investment would generate 2.1 million megawatt hours of power for the Army each year.
Oshkosh Defense to Supply New and Recapitalized Family of Heavy Tactical Vehicle Trucks
In June, the TACOM Life Cycle Management Command ordered more than 730 new and recapitalized trucks from the family of heavy tactical vehicles from Oshkosh Defense, a division of Oshkosh Corporation. The trucks include new heavy equipment transporter (HET) A1s and new and recapitalized heavy expanded-mobility tactical truck (HEMTT) A4s, including light equipment transporters.
The new HET will feature a six-person armor-ready cab, high-capacity front suspension, electrical upgrades, improved diagnostics, and standard air conditioning.
To meet HEMTT A4 configuration requirements, recapitalized vehicles will receive improved suspension systems, a fully air-conditioned and armor-ready cab, and a more powerful drive train.
Production of the trucks is expected to begin in April 2012.
Defense Maintenance Award Winners Announced
A Fort Campbell, Kentucky, unit was among the field-level winners of the 2011 the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Awards. The awards are given each year to recognize achievements in weapon system and military equipment maintenance.
This year, D Company, 6th Battalion, 10th Aviation Regiment, 101st Combat Aviation Brigade, tied the Navy's Fleet Readiness Center Southwest, Naval Base Coronado, based in San Diego, California, in the field-level medium category.
The 2011 Robert T. Mason Depot Maintenance Excellence Award went to the Air Force's KC–135 Programmed Depot Maintenance Team at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center in Oklahoma. In 2010, the team maintained a record 55 aircraft and kept the over-50-year-old jets flying nearly 50,000 sorties in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and Horn of Africa missions.
U.S. Army Africa Conducts Deployment Capability Training in Burundi
At the request of the Burundian military, the Africa Deployment Assistance Partnership Team (ADAPT), U.S. Army Africa (USARAF), conducted its first deployment capability training event with members of the Burundian Defense Forces from 6 to 10 June at the Bujumbura Military Airfield in Burundi.
Traffic management specialists from the 21st Theater Support Command in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and an ammunition specialist and the theater security cooperation program manager from the USARAF Logistics Directorate in Vicenza, Italy, taught and monitored the event.
ADAPT is a U.S. Africa Command program ma-naged and executed by USARAF. The team was in
Bujumbura to share best practices on deploying personnel and equipment by aircraft and to enhance the force-projection capabilities of African militaries to better support peacekeeping, humanitarian relief, and United Nations missions. Increasing deployment interoperability with U.S. forces in joint and combined operations, training, and exercises was a focal point of this military-to-military training opportunity.
ADAPT is a four phase program that is conducted every 12 months on the African continent. USARAF has already conducted training in Rwanda, Uganda, Burkina Faso, Botswana, and Ghana.
|A Burundi soldier
tightens a cargo strap during the practical exercise
portion of Phase I of U.S. Army Africa's ADAPT training at the Bujumbura
Military Airfield in Burundi.
Solar Shade Produces Electricity in Djibouti
A year-long limited-user test of a solar shade by Kansas National Guard Soldiers at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, has proven successful. The solar shade system consists of 72 solar panels located on top of a 40- by 60-foot tent and generates 2 kilowatts of power from the sun daily. The power is stored in high-mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicle batteries housed in three metal boxes.
According to Major Tim Franklin, the uniformed science technology advisor to U.S. Army Africa, "The solar shade produces the same amount of power that would be produced by a gas-driven generator using 8 gallons of fuel a day, or approximately 2,900 gallons in a year."
Franklin said that when the costs of transportation for fuel and generator maintenance are figured in, a system like this could save the Army as much as $40,000 a year.
"Most importantly, the reduction in fuel convoys equates to a reduction in associated casualties from IEDS [improvised explosive devices] and small-arms fire when used in a hostile environment," Franklin said.
The system has proven itself to be relatively maintenance free, despite its exposure to extreme weather conditions, such as harsh winds, high temperatures, and dust. Now that the limited-user test is complete, it is ready for use in the Combined Joint Task Force–Horn of Africa area of operations.
Army Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (ATTP) 1–0.1, S–1 Operations, published 16 May 2011, was previously published as Field Manual Interim 1–0.1. The ATTP enhances the delivery of human resources (HR) support in brigade and battalion S–1 sections by providing HR leaders with the tools to develop operation plans, standing operating procedures, and military decisionmaking process strategies. The S–1 structure has been enhanced to support operations through all force pools of the Army Force Generation process. Continuing HR transformation will affect S–1 operations by reshaping HR processes and business practices, introducing technological changes to multicomponent HR systems, realigning the Army HR structures, revising doctrine to integrate lessons learned, delivering HR services as close to Soldiers as possible, and building on the ability to provide support from home station.
ATTP 4–33, Maintenance Operations, published 18 March 2011, was previously published as Field Manual 4–30.3. This ATTP describes operating force maintenance operations and includes detailed information on the change from the Army's four-level maintenance system (unit/organizational, direct support, general support, and depot) to a two-level maintenance system (field maintenance and sustainment maintenance). While the ATTP focuses on operational- and tactical-level maintenance organizations and their missions, it also lays out the roles and functions of strategic-level maintenance organizations.
Department of Defense (DOD) Directive 1300.22E, published 25 May 2011, establishes policy and assigns responsibilities for the DOD Mortuary Affairs Program. The directive designates the Secretary of the Army as the DOD Executive Agent for Mortuary Affairs; establishes the Central Joint Mortuary Affairs Board for coordinating mortuary affairs policy, procedures, mobilization planning, and recommendations on mortuary services during military operations; and provides overarching policy guidance for Joint Publication 4–06, Mortuary Affairs in Joint Operations.
Rapid Equipping Force Initiative Reduces Reliance on JP8 in Afghanistan
In August, the Army's Rapid Equipping Force (REF) began equipping units for an initial assessment of equipment that will reduce the Army's reliance on JP8 fuel. The assessment is part of a partnership initiative between REF and the Defense Technical Information Center's Weapon Systems Technology Information Analysis Center to procure, deploy, and assess alternative and renewable energy systems for deployed units, particularly those in remote locations.
The initiative is called "Energy to the Edge," and it is part of the Army's Net Zero effort to respond to growing energy demands.
REF, with input from the Marine Corps' Expeditionary Energy Office, Project Manager Mobile Electric Power, Product Manager Ground Soldier, and the Army Communications-Electronics Research, Development, and Engineering Center, selected solutions based on availability, deployment performance, and Department of Defense safety test results. The selected solutions are now being tested for viability in theater.
|A Soldier in Afghanistan drinks clean water from a carbon water purification system provided through the Rapid Equipping Force "Energy to Edge" initiative. Using the water purification system decreased the number of water supply vehicles traveling on roads known to be threatened by improvised explosive devices.
1244th Transportation Company Helps the United Kingdom Withdraw From Iraq
A British shipping container in Umm Qasr, Iraq, is loaded onto a truck belonging to the 1244th Transportation Company, Illinois Army National Guard, for transportation out of Iraq on 16 May. The British liaison officer asked for the unit's assistance in moving the country's last remaining equipment out of Iraq because it did not have the assets to do so on its own. The 1244th received assistance from the personnel security detail of the 230th Sustainment Brigade, Tennessee Army National Guard. (Photo by SGT Shannon R. Gregory)
Defense Working Group on Nondestructive Testing
The 59th Defense Working Group on Nondestructive Testing (DWGNDT) will be held from 6 to 8 December 2011 at the Kingsmill Resort and Conference Center in Williamsburg, Virginia. This year, the event will be hosted by the Army Aviation Logistics School, based at Fort Eustis, Virginia.
DWGNDT is an annual meeting of engineers, scientists, technicians, and managers from all U.S. Government commands and agencies responsible for developing and applying nondestructive testing methods in research, engineering, maintenance, and quality assurance. The working group is restricted to U.S. military, Government civilian, and contract personnel under the direct control of a military or Government civilian. However, this year a full day will be dedicated to non-Government presenters.
For more information or to register, visit the DWGNDT website at www.dwgndt.org.
Defense Logistics 2011
Worldwide Business Research will hold Defense Logistics 2011 from 29 November to 2 December at the Marriott Crystal Gateway in Arlington, Virginia.
This year's event focuses on global, affordable, and efficient logistics and will address the challenges of locating cost savings for the military, drawing down troops in overseas theaters, and delaying and eliminating programs designed to acquire new equipment.
For more information or to register, visit the conference website, www.defenselog.com.