UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!




This appendix implements STANAG 2014/QSTAG 506, Edition 5, Amendment 4.

The commander's selected course of action, his concept of the operation, his intent, and all guidance given during the planning process form the basis for the development of the operation order. The OPORD merges maneuver and fires. Paragraph 3 of the OPORD outlines how the supported commander wants to use his fire support and maneuver assets.

STANAG 2014 prescribes standard formats for the OPORD and its supporting documents. This publication implements STANAG 2014 as it pertains to fire support operations and functions.

Operation Order

OPORD paragraph 3a, explanation, Concept of Operation, is a statement of the commander's intent which expands why the force has been tasked to do the mission stated in paragraph 2. It also tells what results are expected, how these results facilitate future operations, and how, in broad terms, the commander visualizes achieving those results (force as a whole). The concept is stated in enough detail to ensure appropriate action by subordinates in the absence of additional communications or further instructions. The who that will accomplish the concept of operation is in subparagraphs to paragraph 3a. Style is not emphasized, but the concept statement should not exceed five or six sentences written or personally approved by the commander. If an operations overlay is used, it is referenced here; however, the concept statement must be present as paragraph 3a and on the overlay.


The FSCOORD prepares the fires portion of the concept of operation subparagraph of the OPORD. He also coordinates the preparation of the fire support subparagraph (or annex), which constitutes the fire support plan. The fire support plan includes a subparagraph for each fire support agency (means) involved in the operation. Input for these subparagraphs is prepared by the appropriate fire support representatives within the fire support cell. If the fire support subparagraph needs amplification, the FSCOORD prepares a fire support annex. See the table below for planning responsibilities.

Fire Support Plan

The fire support plan for a force headquarters need not totally depend on target input from subordinate elements. The fire support plan tells subordinate commanders what they are to do and what they need to know to accomplish their missions. The plan should not address items in SOPS and should not include how-to-implement instructions to individual fire support agencies. That type of information should be addressed in SOPS or in implementing instructions issued after the receipt of the fire support plan.

Once the fire support plan is prepared, it is disseminated as a part of the force operation order.

The following example shows a division OPORD in which the fire support plan in paragraph 3 is complete. It does not require amplification in a fire support annex.

Fire Support Annex

At the higher echelons, the fire support plan may be too extensive to be fully contained in paragraph 3 of the OPORD. At any echelon, the force operations officer (who is responsible for preparing the OPORD) may direct a limited fire support input to paragraph 3. In either case, a fire support annex to the OPORD may be necessary. This annex expands the fire support information in paragraph 3 of the OPORD.

The need for the more extensive document, the annex, must be carefully weighed by the operations officer and the FSCOORD. If the fire support plan in paragraph 3 is adequate, a fire support annex is not published.

The example below shows the format of a fire support annex and describes the information presented in each paragraph. In this example, the annex is issued separately.

Chemical Support Plan

The example below depicts a chemical support plan to support a force OPORD. The format and content are the same for supporting an OPORD with or without a fire support annex. This example plan supports an OPORD that has a fire support annex. The chemical support plan may be issued at a different time than the OPORD and may have a more limited distribution than the OPORD.

Nuclear Support Plan

The example below shows a nuclear support plan. The plan supports the example fire support annex. Because nuclear support planning progresses at a different rate at times, the distribution for the nuclear support plan may be more limited than that for the OPORD. TAB A shows a subpackage with aimpoints. TAB B shows a subpackage with only weapon requirements.

TACFIRE Considerations

TACFIRE, through its command and control functions, helps the commander and FSCOORD manage their resources. It provides more timely and accurate information and gives them parameters with which to influence computer solutions.

Commander's criteria are a wide range of parameters a FSCOORD can input into the computer so that commander's guidance and the tactical situation are considered. These parameters guide the computer processing. Although most units routinely prescribe the criteria in SOPS, modifications necessary to influence the tactical and technical fire control solutions unique to each fire plan or operation may be necessary.

The fire support plan includes specific commander's criteria when the criteria differ from SOP. The FSCOORD should consider the commander's criteria listed to the left and should include them in the fire support plan as required.

The FSCOORD should review the established attack criteria (FM;ATTACK:). Criteria other than SOP are included in the OPORD.

Mutual support assignments are published as part of the organization for combat.

The artillery target intelligence (ATI) function aids in the management of targeting information. Critical ATI criteria are as shown below.

NOTE: More information on TACFIRE procedures is in TC 6-40A.

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list