COMBAT SERVICE SUPPORT
Combat service support (CSS) includes those functions and services required to man, arm, fuel, fix, move, and sustain forces in combat operations. The division support command (DISCOM) and corps support command (COSCOM) are organized to provide the full range of health services and personnel functions as well as the traditional logistics functions of supply, maintenance, field services, and transportation. This chapter covers all functional areas of CSS.
Commanders and leaders at all echelons are responsible for the CSS of organic and attached elements in their commands. Each leader anticipates his requirements, makes his needs known, and uses the available CSS elements.
CSS must constantly be pushed forward to using units, giving them the means to complete their missions. At all echelons, CSS activities must be located close enough to the supported unit for expedient resupply by the support unit organic transportation assets. Divisional MLRS units receive support from the DISCOM MSB, whereas corps units are supported by COSCOM. Corps MLRS units are supported by forward corps support battalions (FCSB) normally located in the division support area (DSA). The composition of a FCSB depends on the assigned mission, units requiring support and duration of support.
The logistics plan, based on adequate and timely support of the tactical operation, must be complete, simple, and flexible. It must facilitate future operations and be coordinated with all appropriate support agencies. Combat service support and tactical planning are interwoven. Battalion-level units stock some combat-essential supplies such as rations and repair parts (called prescribed loads) and conventional ammunition (called basic loads). These stocks enable units to continue operating if the supply chain is temporarily broken or if it is not yet operational within the zone of operations. Basic loads are those supplies kept by units for use in combat (for other than ammunition). The quantity of each item of supply in a basic load is related to the number of days in combat the units may be sustained without resupply.
Combat service support to units organic or attached to the division is provided by the MSB, located in the DSA. The DSA also contains the division trains and forward COSCOM elements operating in the division sector. The MSB commander controls all DISCOM and COSCOM elements operating in the DSA. The MSB provides support to the division as a whole, attached MLRS battalions, and to the divisional MLRS battery. Despite forward positioning requirements, MLRS units do not normally receive any logistical support from DISCOM forward support battalions (FSB).
The COSCOM provides CSS mainly through two types of major subordinate elements: corps-wide service organizations and support battalions, groups, or brigades. The method of providing support is based on the size of the corps, the organization of the COSCOM, the number of units to be supported, and the tactical situation. The COSCOM augments support to the divisions and provides CSS to nondivisional units under the control of the corps, including the Corps MLRS battalions.
The MLRS units, through their parent headquarters, should coordinate to draw logistics support from the closest support area available. The CSS of support areas varies; not all will be able to support an MLRS unit with all of the CSS functions and services required. For example, MLRS units often must obtain ammunition from an ATP or ASP established or augmented by corps.
The MLRS battalion must be flexible in obtaining support. Dispersion throughout the corps area may dictate nonstandard methods of support. For example, a battery conducting independent operations could obtain a portion of its support from the closest divisional FSB and the remainder from the MSB. It may change supporting units during the operation on the basis of a change of missions. The battalion XO must ensure that this support is thoroughly coordinated with both the DS unit and the supported battery.
The battalion trains is a grouping of personnel, equipment, and vehicles that provide very limited logistical support to the batteries. The primary function of these trains is staff coordination with external support agencies. The battalion trains normally operates under the control of the ALOC. The organization of the MLRS battalion trains varies with the mission and tactical situation as well as the other factors of METT-T. The battalion trains is typically a small organization with few assets. Unlike the traditional FA HHB and service batteries, the MLRS battalion HHS battery has few organic CSS assets. The HHS is organized and equipped primarily to provide combat support to itself. Staff elements provide coordination with external agencies to facilitate logistics activities and resupply. The battalion maintenance section also provides support to the entire battalion in the areas of scheduled maintenance, overflow unscheduled maintenance, and recovery. Most of the battalion CSS assets are organic to the firing batteries, thereby facilitating dispersed operations. The battalion can locate its trains near a logistics support area to facilitate coordination for logistics support. To facilitate resupply of the batteries, however, the trains may be centrally located on the battlefield.
When possible, supplies are delivered directly to the firing batteries. This is unit distribution. Batteries normally will draw supplies from a distribution point. This is supply point distribution. Direct distribution from division and corps support units is another form of unit distribution. Intermediate locations or units are bypassed to save time and resources.
The logistics operations within MLRS battalions are geared to be decentralized in control. This allows MLRS firing batteries to operate autonomously and/or on a wide front. CSS assets are organic to MLRS firing units to allow them to conduct their own maintenance and resupply operations. There are three options available to MLRS battalions to monitor and coordinate logistics.
Option 1-Decentralized Control
Logistics functions within MLRS units are best suited to decentralized control. The units are already equipped and manned to operate in this manner. Under decentralized logistics control, the BC, with assistance from the battery LOC, is responsible for ensuring adequate quantities of Class I, III, V, and IX are on hand to support the battery. The Bn or div arty ALOC simply coordinates for the unit to draw these items and processes/forwards requests as appropriate. Decentralized logistics operations allow for dual, mixed or consolidated CPs (as discussed in Chapter 4).
Advantages to Decentralized Control:
- Supports ability to employ autonomously.
- Provides the most flexibility at battery level.
- Dispersion enhances survivability of CSS assets battalion wide.
Disadvantages to Decentralized Control:
- Requires more vehicular traffic in and out of the battery area increasing chances that firing batteries will be observed by enemy forces.
- Personnel intensive -each firing battery works separately to firing the same logistical requirements.
Option 2-Centralized Control
MLRS units may centralize control of logistics operations within the battalion. However, since the Bn ALOC is not manned to perform consolidated logistics functions, and MLRS firing units are resourced to be predominantly self-sustaining, centralizing logistical functions call for drastic changes in the doctrinal employment techniques for MLRS battalions. During centralized logistic operations, the Bn ALOC would assume control of all logistics functions and assets in the batteries and battalion. This includes fueling, sustaining, fixing, and arming. The sections that perform these functions would most likely collocate within the area of operations and the Bn ALOC would control their actions. Under this system, the Bn would maximize the use of Logistics RPs to distribute logistics packages. Additionally, the Bn would employ internal maintenance and ammunition haul assets forward to facilitate firing battery operations. Due to the large amount of vehicles and support equipment, centralized logistics operations do not lend themselves to consolidated CP operations (as discussed in Chapter 4).
Advantages to Centralized Control:
- Enhances survivability of firing units by reducing their signature.
- Removes logistics support strain from the battery.
- Reduces security risks to logistics vehicles (reduces the amount of vehicles required to be on the road).
- Streamlines logistics functions through the efficient management of personnel.
- Increases logistic assets point defense capabilities.
Disadvantages to Centralized Control:
- CSS assets, when centralized, become a lucrative target.
- Battery turnaround time for resupply may increase.
- Additional terrain is required to support the trains location.
- Impairs ability to employ a firing battery autonomously.
Option 3-Shared Control
This option of conducting logistics operations is simply a combination of the two options previously discussed. METT-T may dictate that certain logistics functions --for example, fueling, or arming--be centralized at battalion level. The Bn may establish an AHA or a refuel point, etc. to support the overall battalion mission. Under this option all or simply part of certain logistics sections may be centralized into a unit trains location in order to best support the unit's mission. Shared control logistics operations lend themselves to dual, mixed, or consolidated CPs (as discussed in Chapter 4).
Advantages to Shared Control:
- Maximizes flexibility by focusing critical logistics efforts in appropriate areas.
- Reduces a logistics burden in specific areas.
Disadvantages to Shared Control:
- Increases logistics C2 strain on ALOC because of manpower constraints.
An MLRS battery commander may choose to split his logistics element from the BOC. It then operates under the control of the LOC (see Chapter 3 for more information). The battery 1SG normally establishes logistics release points (LRPs) in order to push routine supplies forward and facilitate other routine administration. Firing platoon sergeants normally meet the 1SG at the LRP on a daily basis or IAW unit SOP.
MLRS firing platoons have no organic logistics support assets. Firing platoons are completely dependent upon the parent Battery headquarters for this support. Although some battery assets lend themselves to decentralizing, this limits the operational flexibility of the battery and could adversely impact on the support of other firing platoons.
The systems of personnel readiness management, replacement management, and casualty management meet the Army personnel requirements from mobilization and deployment through redeployment and demobilization. The Army personnel readiness system provides a flexible tool for selecting and assigning soldiers with the correct skills to meet the requirements before, during, and after combat. The replacement management system moves soldiers and civilians through the continental United States (CONUS) replacement centers to unit commanders in the theater of operations. The replacement system responds to commanders through the personnel-readiness management system. Casualty management helps the personnel-readiness manager replace losses incurred during battle (FM 100-5).
Strength accounting is the process by which combat readiness (personnel status) is measured. It keeps track of the troops on hand, identifies those that have been lost, and identifies those that are needed. The MLRS battalion S1 (1SG for divisional MLRS batteries) serves as a conduit between subordinate units and the higher headquarters.
Batteries submit a daily personnel summary report to the battalion S1 in the battalion trains. He then forwards a consolidated battalion report. The divisional MLRS battery submits its report to div arty. These reports, together with authorized vacancies, are the basis for requesting individual replacements. Accurate strength reports also give the commander and staff information to plan future operations. The unit SOP provides guidelines for the report.
The battalion S1 is the MLRS battalion commander's staff officer for individual personnel replacement operations. Personnel requirement reports and loss estimates determine the replacement requirement. The division or corps AG, on the basis of documented losses, replacement projections, and the division commander's priorities, prepares replacement distribution projections. The corps AG prepares a similar report to the corps artillery G1. Replacements are delivered to the unit through the BSA or DSA for the divisional MLRS battery and through the COSCOM for the nondivisional corps MLRS battalion. Replacement flow is monitored by the battalion S1. All replacements or returnees are brought to the ALOC for initial processing. Hospital returnees are handled as replacements by the division AG. Replacements are equipped with needed field gear before leaving the ALOC.
The main personnel accounting function on the battlefield is casualty reporting. The casualty reporting system, a by-name personnel accounting system, begins at unit level with the person who knows that a casualty has occurred. Casualty information must be reported with 100-percent accuracy as quickly as the situation permits.
During combat operations, the S1 (1SG for divisional MLRS batteries) must make sure that strength and casualty reports are timely and accurate. Casualty reports give the detailed information needed to requisition specific replacements. Casualty reporting occurs as soon as possible after the event and is started by the section chief or battery commander. A DA Form 1156 (Casualty Feeder Report) is carried by all small-unit leaders to report hostile-action casualties and non-hostile-action casualties. It provides initial information to the adjutant general (AG) for preparing the casualty report. This report is used by Department of the Army (DA) to notify next of kin. Also, it validates the soldier's line-of-duty status, which determines payment of benefits. Casualties are reported to the 1SG, who collects the reports and forwards them to the PAC. Reports are forwarded through the FA brigade HQ for nondivisional MLRS units under corps control. Reports are forwarded through the div arty HQ for the divisional MLRS battery.
During periods of intense combat, arming the force is extensive and time-sensitive. It begins with peacetime planning and covers all phases of force-projection operations. Arming the force requires detailed planning and coordination among the combat users and the ammunition and transportation logisticians at all levels. Modern warfare consumes large amounts of ammunition. Much of the Army's ordnance depends on high-quality electronic and optical technologies for precision and effectiveness. Logistics provides the total package of components, technical maintenance, and skilled soldiers to keep weapons systems firing. The key to arming soldiers in the field is planning for a flexible logistics distribution system capable of surging for the main effort. Given the large variety of ammunition and weapons in use and the fluid nature of battle, arming soldiers has become an even greater challenge (FM 100-5).
The MLRS units operate throughout division and corps (including covering force) sectors. They have unique ammunition requirements, resupply vehicles, and procedures. The MLRS family of munitions is described in Chapter 1. The following descriptions of ammo agencies and terms apply to all MLRS units.
Corps Storage Area (CSA). The corps storage area (CSA) is located 170-190 km behind the FLOT, deep in the corps support area. It is the main source of ammunition for all FA units in the caps area. The GS ammo company operating the CSA pushes ammunition forward to the ASPs and the ATPs with corps transportation assets.
Ammunition Supply Point (ASP). The ASPs are alternate sources of ammunition for units located in a division area (ATPs are the primary). The ASPs are operated by the COSCOM DS ammunition company. Stocks, including MLRS, are managed by the COSCOM MMC and are based on requirements determined by the DAO and the division materiel management center (DMMC).
Ammunition Transfer Point (ATP). Artillery units located in a division area normally receive 100 percent of their ammunition requirements at an ATP. Normally, there are four ATPs in a division area.
Each forward support area battalion operates an ATP in its BSA. These ATPs service mainly the maneuver brigade and the cannon FA battalions operating in the brigade zone. The fourth ATP (divisional ATP), operated by the DS ammunition company, is located in the DSA. It is located approximately 35 to 45 kilometers from the FLOT and is designed to provide the required lift and transload capability for the divisional MLRS unit, corps MLRS units, and all cannon artillery units supporting the division. The MLRS unit draws ammunition from the ATP designated by the DAO.
The MLRS units that have been postured for corps deep attack missions and are positioned in a division area normally will draw Army TACMS variants from the ASP. However, these items may require extraordinary asset management and distribution to ensure the right ammunition is available to the right weapons systems at the right time. With proper planning and coordination, Corps will push Army TACMS forward to the appropriate ATP. Another option to expedite reaction time would be to provide Army TACMS from the CSA or ASP to the ATP or unit trains by air.
Note: Only under the most unusual or emergency circumstances will an MLRS unit use its organic assets to draw ammunition from the CSA.
The MLRS battery ammunition platoon leaders and MLRS battalion S4s must coordinate with the DAO and the ATP to ensure MLRS needs are met at the nearest ATP. Normally, MLRS ammunition is left on the corps transportation vehicle trailers at the ATP. The MLRS unit personnel transload launch pods from the trailers by using organic material handling equipment. Often, the MLRS transfer point is actually outside of, and adjacent to the ATP.
Ammunition Holding Area (AHA). The AHAs can be established at MLRS platoon, battery and/or battalion levels. Normally, AHAs are only required at the platoon level during the initial phase of an operation in order to have ammunition as far forward as possible. Once hostilities commence, the trucks will normally not be held at a platoon OPAREA. This would slow resupply and ultimately impact on the fire mission rate. The HEMTT/HEMATs of the ammunition platoon maybe held in the battery or battalion AHA between resupply missions depending upon unit TSOP. The location of AHAs and the crewmen duties in these areas vary according to unit SOP (see Chapter 4).
Reload Point (RL). The RLs are the locations in the platoon OPAREA where M270 launchers down-load expended launch pods, up-load new launch pods, and rendezvous for other resupply items. At least two RLs per OPAREA are recommended. These requirements may vary with METT-T (see Chapter 4).
Basic Load. Class V UBL consists of quantities of conventional ammunition required to sustain the unit during combat until normal resupply can be conducted. The basic load must be available for the unit to carry into combat with its organic transportation assets.
The Class V UBL stockage level is established by the major by command (MACOM). It includes MLRS launch pods, small arms ammunition, explosives, mines, fuzes, detonators, pyrotechnics, and associated items. It does not include TOE/MTOE items, such as explosive components of sets or kits although they are stored and uploaded along with the class V UBL (see Table 6-1).
Required Supply Rate. The required supply rate (RSR) is the estimate of the amount of ammunition needed to sustain operations, without restrictions, for a specific length of time. The RSR is a result of the unit forecast for ammunition, which is based on the tactical situation and mission. The MLRS battalion S3 and div arty S3 are responsible for determining ammo requirements and submitting forecasts to the next higher headquarters. The RSR is expressed in terms of rounds per unit, per individual, or per weapon per day or as LPCs per launcher per day. The unit RSR is reported as part of operations or logistics reports. These requirements are compared with assets expected to be available for the period to determine the CSR.
Controlled Supply Rate. The CSR is the amount of ammunition use that can be sustained with available assets. The CSR also is expressed as rounds per unit, per individual, or per weapon per day. The CSR can also be expressed in terms of LPCs per launcher per day. The theater commander determines the CSR for each item of ammunition. In turn, the commander of each subordinate tactical unit determines a CSR for his units at the lower levels. The CSRs for individual items may vary from one command to the next. The corps commander uses the CSR to prioritize unit ability to expend ammunition, consistent with the mission requirements of the overall force. This ensures enough ammunition for all units on the basis of their missions. The CSR may be communicated to subordinate commands through the logistic support channels; or it may be published in the OPORD, a fragmentary order (FRAGO), or the fire support portion of the OPORD. The statement "The CSR is the RSR" is used if there are no restrictions. Except in emergency situations, units may not draw more than their CSRs without authority from their next higher headquarters.
Expenditure Rates. Each MLRS unit (launcher) expends a certain number of rounds per launcher per day based on the operational and tactical situation. Corps and theater stockage objectives are based on the projected intensity of battle. These objectives are expressed as days of supply (DOS) per type of ammunition. Consumption rates of ammunition may be expressed as an average of rounds per weapon per day to support a given force. A method of determining the anticipated consumption rates for MLRS units is by use of a mission profile, or measure of the effort expected of a system under various levels of combat intensity. The mission profile for MLRS consists of estimates for three levels of combat intensity. These levels of intensity are defined as follows:
- Sustained. This is the level of effort expended per day over an extended period of combat for a committed force. This level is normally expected to occur 75 percent of the time for MLRS units.
- Surge. This is the level of effort expended when a committed force faces a main attack. This level is normally expected to occur less than 20 percent of the time for MLRS units.
- Peak. This is the level of effort expended during an intense period of combat, and is most likely to occur for direct support and/or reinforcing artillery with a brigade area. This level is normally expected to occur less than 5 percent of the time for MLRS units.
M26 Rockets. The rocket data below was originally developed from the Firefinder II Abbreviated Analysis portion of the Counterfire Study, scaled to the European scenario. A similar analysis conducted in 1994 to support MFOM development yielded nearly identical results.
M39 Missile. Although Army TACMS expenditures are unique to the theater and mission requirements of the JTF or corps commander, Table 6-2 shows the daily planning figures for the three levels of combat intensity described above:
The actual number of missions and munitions is determined by SOP, commander's criteria, and the staff planning process. It is a function of the number and types of targets which will be engaged, and size and location errors associated with each target. In addition to the anticipated level of effort described above. The CSR and other restrictions established by the JTF, corps, or division commander will effect the stockage and resupply of munitions, especially Army TACMS.
Ammunition is normally drawn from a division or corps ATP or ASP (see Figure 6-2). If low density munitions are stored at different locations, the unit may need to dedicate appropriate resupply assets as required. Based on the tactical situation, ammunition platoons organic to batteries can be task-organized in several ways to accomplish the mission of resupply. These methods are based on the level (platoon, battery, battalion) that is responsible for control of ammunition resupply operations.
This method places a number of ammunition HEMTT/HEMATs under the control of the firing platoons. The firing platoon sergeant is then responsible for the flow of ammunition from the ATP or ASP directly to the platoon resupply points.
Under centralized control of ammunition resupply operations, the battery commander retains control of organic HEMTT/HEMATs and manages ammunition resupply operations at battery level (LOC).
The battalion commander may consolidate control of some of the HEMTT/HEMATs from the batteries into a battalion ammunition resupply platoon and manage all Class V resupply operations.
Leaders must consider several things when task organizing ammunition resupply assets:
- Tactical fire direction. Echelons that are responsible for tactical fire direction should retain enough control to maintain an ability to redirect the flow of ammunition resupply.
- Distances to and from units/ATPs. The farther the ASP/ATP is from the unit, the greater the need to consolidate or centralize at least a portion of the assets. This will increase control and reduce navigational errors.
- Expected rates of fire. Higher rates of fire may require a less centralized approach. This reduces the number of stops an ammunition crew makes throughout the resupply cycle.
- Number of trucks and trailers available. Fewer trucks may require less centralized methods of ammunition resupply in order to maintain sustained rates of fire.
- Soldiers' land navigation skills. Units having soldiers with weak mounted land navigation skills may require more control in managing resupply and thus take a more centralized approach.
- Refueling requirements for HEMTTs.
- Other Class V requirements.
- Maintenance of equipment. Swapping trucks at either the battery or battalion AHA in order to prevent long transload times is not without problems. Crews that don't feel ownership for their vehicle are less likely to maintain it properly.
Resupply by Air
Aviation assets can be used to transport limited quantities of ammunition. However, transport of MLRS ammunition by air may not be practical given the limited haul capacity of rotary aircraft (see Appendix A).
Maximizing equipment availability is a necessity in supporting a force-projection army. Sound maintenance practices in all units, forward positioning of maintenance capabilities, quickly accessible repair parts, and well-understood priorities for recovery and repair may spell the difference between success and failure. Repairing equipment far forward is key. A tailored maintenance capability will deploy, move with, and redeploy with supported units. Modular support teams will provide additional capabilities. Battle damage assessment and repair (BDAR) provides the capability to quickly repair and return equipment to combat or expedite recovery and evacuation to the closest maintenance facility with required capabilities. The maintenance focus is on supporting combat operations (FM 100-5).
A successful maintenance program depends on a concentrated effort by all personnel in the unit to maintain equipment in a serviceable condition. The operational requirements and sophisticated equipment of the MLRS unit require that most maintenance be done at an operational site as far forward as possible. Therefore, maintenance support teams must include the skilled personnel, proper tools, test equipment, and necessary repair parts.
A maintenance support team (MST) is a mobile team organized and equipped to provide forward support.
A unit maintenance collection point (UMCP) is a location established by the battalion maintenance section to collect equipment awaiting repair, evacuation, controlled exchange, or cannibalization. It is the first point to which battery maintenance teams evacuate equipment.
Cannibalization is the authorized removal of parts or components from uneconomically repairable or disposable end items or assemblies and making them available for reuse.
Controlled substitution is the authorized removal of serviceable parts, components, or assemblies from unserviceable, economically repairable equipment and their immediate reuse in restoring a like item to combat-operable or serviceable condition. Removed components must be replaced as soon as possible.
Battlefield damage assessment and repair (BDAR) is the act of inspecting battle damage to determine its extent, classifying the type of repairs required, and determining the procedure best suited to make the equipment mission-capable. BDAR may involve the immediate repair of equipment by field-expedient methods; however, BDAR procedures will be used only in combat, at the direction of the commander and IAW applicable technical manuals.
Line replaceable units (LRU) are high value, modular replacement components designed to facilitate swift repair of M270 launchers. There are eight LRUs, six maintained on unit PLL and two maintained by the 27M MST.
The Army maintenance system consists of four distinct levels, or categories, of maintenance as follows:
The cornerstone of unit maintenance is the operator and/or crew performing PMCS from the applicable TM -10 and -20 series. Unit maintenance is characterized by the isolation of faults by using built-in or automatic test equipment, by visual inspections, by minor adjustments, and by the exchange of faulty modules and components. Unit mechanics also perform recovery tasks. All MLRS crew members are able to perform organizational (-20 level) maintenance on the LLM.
Intermediate Direct Support Maintenance
The MLRS units depend on their DS unit for assistance when equipment needs maintenance support beyond the organic capabilities of the battery and battalion. The heavy division MSB provides support to divisional MLRS units. The corps MLRS units receive direct support maintenance from maintenance companies within corps ordnance support battalions. This applies to both automotive and missile direct support. The heavy maintenance and electronic maintenance companies provide DS automotive maintenance and MLRS-specific support for the divisional MLRS unit.
Intermediate DS maintenance personnel diagnose and fault-isolate equipment or module failure, adjust and align modules and components, and repair defective end items. DS maintenance is comprised of two separate functions:
- Automotive and track vehicle.
- Electronic repair.
Automotive and track vehicle maintenance is accomplished by a main maintenance company. The main maintenance company operates a repairable exchange (RX) activity, performs light body repair, and provides backup recovery support to the HHS maintenance section. Electronic repair is accomplished by the electronic maintenance company (ELMC). The ELMC operates a technical supply and RX activity for electronic maintenance support. The ELMC has tailored MST to support the battalion. The FCSB normally contains MSTs for both automotive and missile support for the corps MLRS battalion. Divisional MLRS units will normally receive only MSTs for missile maintenance support from the division MSB.
Intermediate General Support
Intermediate GS maintenance provides maintenance support to the MSB's technical supply RX activity for both the divisional and corps MLRS units. The GS unit also provides Army TACMS surveillance and GMLA minor repair support to ammunition storage facilities.
Depot maintenance provides technical support and backup to DS and GS maintenance units. It consists of repair or overhaul of economically repairable components and end items. Such maintenance is intended to augment stocks of unserviceable equipment and to support lower levels of maintenance. Depot maintenance requires extensive shop equipment and personnel with greater technical skills than are required in organizational and intermediate maintenance activities. It can provide combat-ready materiel to the Army supply system.
The battalion maintenance section consists of supervisory, supply, maintenance, and recovery personnel. The battalion maintenance officer and technician give technical advice and expertise to the battalion and battery commanders. The BMO coordinates maintenance and Class IX supply with the DS MSTs. When supporting MAGTF operations, the BMO interacts with the Marine combat service support detachment (CSSD) when coordinating Class IX resupply or facilitating overflow DS maintenance support. If the MLRS battery is without a battalion HQ, the above maintenance support responsibilities fall on the battery maintenance officer (normally, the ammunition platoon leader) and motor sergeant. This section provides the overflow organizational maintenance support, as well as recovery and scheduled services support.
The HHS maintenance section provides unit-level maintenance and recovery support to HHS elements. This support includes performing scheduled services, unscheduled maintenance, and recovery.
Combat power is maximized when disabled equipment is repaired as far forward and as quickly as possible. The BMO, in coordination with the XO, directs the maintenance effort for the battalion. He uses established time guidelines and coordinates maintenance actions.
Battle damage assessment and diagnosis determine repair time. An item is repaired on site or recovered directly to the appropriate maintenance echelon in the appropriate support area. The location is based on the following:
- Tactical situation.
- Echelon of work required.
- Availability of required repair parts.
- Current workload in each area.
- Maintenance time guidelines.
Maintenance time guidelines establish the maximum time that unserviceable equipment will remain in various support areas. The decision to repair, recover, or evacuate is made at all levels and is based on the time required to repair. Those times are based on command policy and the factors of METT-T. They do not include evacuation, preparation, and movement time. The maintenance times shown in Table 6-3 are flexible and should not be considered restrictive.
The UMCP is normally established at a centralized point that can easily support all units organic and attached to the Bn. It includes the Bn maintenance section and the automotive DS MST. The UMCP is not a "one stop-fix-it shop," rather a designated location for units to evacuate equipment for repair that may or may not require assistance from the MSTs or the Bn maint section. The UMCP must not become a collection point for non operational vehicles to the extent that it cannot move with reasonable notice. Anything that cannot be repaired or towed by UMCP assets is immediately recovered to the appropriate location. The UMCP is supervised by the BMO and BMT.
During periods of frequent displacement, the BMO may direct that the UMCP displace by echelon. In this case, some personnel of the maintenance platoon, including the BMO, complete repair on vehicles at the existing UMCP before displacing forward to the new location. Maintenance assets that are not involved in repairs can move with the rest of the unit trains and establish the forward UMCP.
During rapid forward moves, the UMCP conducts only essential repairs and simple recovery. Other disabled vehicles are taken to collection points on the MSR. They remain there to be repaired or evacuated. Multiple collection points may be beyond the C2 capability of the battalion.
Each MLRS battery is designed to perform its own organizational maintenance. The structure of the MLRS battery maintenance section supports unit ability to conduct independent operations. Unit-level maintenance on the FCS/LLM is performed by the crew. They must work closely with the maintenance section for repair parts support and to coordinate for DS MST assistance. All other unit organizational maintenance repair for all organic and attached equipment is performed by the MLRS battery maintenance section.
The MLRS maintenance concept is based on the established conventional levels of maintenance (unit, DS, GS, and depot) with use of specialized maintenance teams. (See Figure 6-3.)
FCS Related Maintenance. The FCS incorporates built-in test equipment (BITE) to help the crew maintain system performance. This BITE continually monitors the FCS components and functions. If a failure occurs, the crew is notified by illumination of a status light or by a fault message on the FCP. If the fault is serious, any ongoing mission is automatically stopped. When a fault indication is received, the crew refers to corrective actions in the troubleshooting section of the technical manual. If the fault cannot be corrected by the prescribed actions and more testing is required, the mechanic does the following:
- Calls up his diagnostic menu.
- Selects the test indicated by the troubleshooting table.
- Performs checks indicated by the table or by the FCP prompts.
Usually, completion of these checks results in the requirement for component replacement, RX at unit level, or notification of DS MST personnel.
Non-FCS Maintenance. Unit maintenance repair other than FCS repair is performed by the MLRS battery maintenance section. Operator-detected faults which cannot be corrected by troubleshooting are reported to the platoon HQ. The HQ coordinates with the BOC or maintenance section for support.
Defective assemblies, modules, and parts not authorized for repair at unit level are evacuated to the appropriate DS facility for exchange or repair.
Recovery of MLRS equipment is a critical function of the unit maintenance program. The two-vehicle recovery capability of the battery and the possible wide dispersion of battery elements can require the use of self-recovery techniques within the platoons. Limited additional recovery support is available at battalion for nondivisional units. Recovery beyond the unit organic capability must be obtained from the supporting maintenance unit.
Direct support communications maintenance support will be accomplished by the ELMC. An austere signal section is authorized for repair of communications equipment. Troubleshooting by operators and evacuation to the support maintenance signal repair unit is the usual maintenance procedure.
Fire Direction System
DS FDS maintenance will be accomplished by the ELMC. The FDS accomplishes internal software fault detection and isolation for unit maintenance. No organizational maintenance is authorized on the AN/GYK-37, LCU other than PMCS.
Maintenance Support Teams
Repair of MLRS specific components (FCS/LLM) is facilitated by the MOS 27M MSTs from the respective DS Missile Support units. This MST collocates with the MLRS unit normally down to battery level. The MST foreman responds to request for direct support by dispatching MLRS repairers to the platoon area to repair a non operational launcher on site. The MST representatives may collocate with the LOC to receive requests via FM voice radio. This allows them to troubleshoot before the MST is dispatched and to prioritize the maintenance workload. The MLRS platoon leader assumes responsibility for the MST when it is in the platoon area. He releases the MST to return to the battery LOC when the maintenance mission is complete. The MSTs also may be attached to the firing platoons for the duration of operations. This facilitates rapid fault diagnosis and repair, but limits flexibility. Automotive maintenance support may be provided by forward contact teams, or the vehicles may be consolidated at the battery headquarters and evacuated to a maintenance unit or specified location. Both teams may be augmented as needed by members from corps GS units.
Class IX: Repair Parts
Class IX is made up of those repairable components, kits, assemblies, and subassemblies (serviceable and unserviceable) that are required for maintenance support of all equipment (less medical-peculiar repair parts). Minor repairable components are included in Class IX repair parts. To recover and repair these items, they are treated as RX items. Class IX items required for support of SIGINT equipment are drawn from the supporting signal battalion.
Requisitioning Class IX items is unique, as it is done through the maintenance support structure. Units maintain a stockage of parts to meet immediate needs. At the unit level, this is called PLL. Maintenance units keep a stockage of parts to meet the immediate needs of the units they support. This stockage is the authorized stockage list (ASL). Unit Class IX PLL replenishment is obtained from the maintenance support company. An unserviceable RX item is exchanged at the maintenance support activity for a serviceable like item.
Requests for Class IX repair parts are submitted to the Class IX section of the maintenance unit which supports the MLRS unit. The maintenance unit issues the part from the ASL, if it is on hand. Request from supported units which cannot be filled by the maintenance company or activity are forwarded to the materiel management center (MMC). The MMC issues the part from the ASL of another maintenance unit; or, if the part is unavailable, the appropriate support command (DISCOM or COSCOM) orders it.
Class IX items that arrive in the corps (for MLRS battalions under corps control) or division (for divisional MLRS units) are received by the maintenance unit which supports that MLRS unit. The supported unit normally picks up the Class IX parts from the support maintenance unit, however, they may be delivered to the unit.
While the high performance air and ground vehicles of the Army furnish great potential mobility for both heavy and light forces, they also consume large quantities of fuel. Wheeled vehicles use less fuel than tracked vehicles and heavy equipment but still make great cumulative demands on the logistics system. Providing clear priorities for fueling, accurately estimating fuel consumption, and economizing assets whenever possible contribute to ensuring adequate support of operations. Logisticians operate a high-volume refueling system to support routine consumption rates; they also provide a surge capability. In peak consumption periods, victory may depend on the ability of the logistics system to increase the flow of fuel. Whether combat, CS, or CSS, all units require uninterrupted fueling to function effectively (FM 100-5).
Class III supplies include petroleum fuels, lubricants, hydraulic and insulating oils, and antifreeze. Requisitioning of Class III supplies begins with a forecast submitted by the unit to the appropriate support area. The external SOPs of the support unit dictate the frequency of the reports. The forecast may be based on FM 101-10-1/2, historical data reflecting consumption rates, or experience.
On the basis of the forecasts, fuel is supplied to the forward distribution points. Here the units draw Class III supplies from their supporting logistics unit on an as-required basis. In emergency situations, the corps has a limited capability to provide direct shipments of bulk Class III to the consuming divisional units or as far forward as practical. A combination of unit and supply point distribution is used (see Figure 6-4).
Normally, MLRS battery POL resupply operations are managed by the first sergeant and conducted by the battery supply section. Battery POL tankers are sent to the nearest supporting forward distribution point, refueled, and returned to the battery area. Because of the operational distances an MLRS unit may have to cover, the MLRS unit commander may have to coordinate Class III resupply for MLRS batteries and/or platoons with other units. Battery refueling operations can be carried out in the following manner:
- Hot Refuel. All vehicles refuel during movement enroute to new OPAREAs. Based on METT-T, commanders will determine the amount of time and fuel available for each vehicle. This is the preferred method.
- OPAREA Refuel. The fuel truck is taken to the platoon OPAREAs. The fuel truck is then taken to individual vehicle positions or the vehicles move to the centrally located fuel truck. This option is the least preferred because of the potential that it may unnecessarily reveal firing platoon/launcher positions.
Packaged class III supplies are requested and distributed like class II and IV items. Items include fuel in 5, 55, and 500 gallon containers; packaged products such as lubricants, greases, hydraulic fluids; solvents in containers of 55 gallons or less; and cylinders of liquid and compressed gases. To maintain mobility, stockage is restricted to limited high demand items. The receipt, storage, and issue of packaged petroleum products and fuels are described in FM 10-69.
Soldiers, equipment, and supplies must move rapidly and in sufficient quantities to support combat operations. Tactical actions require timely concentration of units and materiel and often demand short-notice movement of large forces and major shifts in direction of movement. Automated systems provide in transit visibility. At the tactical level, units, supplies, and important facilities move as battles progress to ensure responsive support of committed units as large as corps. While moving, CSS units must protect themselves and provide logistical support to combat units. Planning, controlling, and executing transportation operations require detailed preparation and extensive training of CSS staffs and units. The complicating effects of terrain, weather, and enemy interdiction demand well-planned engineer support and great flexibility of transportation planners and operators (see Figure 6-5).
MLRS units have limited haul capability when uploaded with organic equipment and ammunition basic load. Additional transportation may be required to supplement the battalion and battery resources. It maybe used for such tasks as hauling additional Class III and Class V supplies, moving large amounts of barrier materials, evacuating damaged material, and making administrative moves. Units should consider the use of HETs when conducting long moves. Requests are forwarded by the S4 or supply sergeant through logistics channels to the DISCOM or COSCOM movement control center (MCC). Aerial transport is discussed in Appendix A.
SUSTAINING SOLDIERS AND THEIR SYSTEMS
The five elements to sustaining soldiers and their systems are personnel services, health services, field services, quality of life, and general supply support (FM 100-5).
Personnel service support is the management and execution of personnel services, resource management, finance services, and legal service support. Soldiers are reassured by concerned, positive leadership and a personnel system that ensures care for them while they perform their missions (FM 100-5).
Personnel service support is an important component of CSS. It involves many CSS functions that sustain the combat potential of the force and the morale and welfare of the soldier. It includes the following:
- Personnel services (see also Section II, Manning).
- Finance support.
- Chaplain activities.
- Legal service support.
- Public affairs.
In addition to the three combat critical tasks found in the Manning function at Section II, personnel services include routine administration, awards, promotions, efficiency reports, etc.
In the MLRS battalion, the staff officer responsible for coordinating personnel service support is the S1. In the divisional MLRS battery, the 1SG and unit clerk are the focal points for personnel service support activities.
Finance services to the battalion are usually provided by mobile pay teams (MPTs) from the corps area finance support unit. During combat operations, the MPTs make payments to soldiers in amounts established by the theater army commander or in lesser amounts if the soldier so desires. When and where the soldier is paid are determined by the commander and coordinated by the S1.
Legal Service Support
Legal services support is coordinated by the S1 section. It is provided to the battalion on a GS basis by the staff judge advocate of the division. It includes the following:
- Legal advice to commanders on all matters involving military law, domestic law, foreign law, international law, and administrative proceedings.
- Representation to soldiers accused and/or suspected in military justice matters and to personnel pending adverse military personnel action.
- Advice to soldiers on complaints, reports of survey, and the right to silence in administrative proceedings.
- Legal assistance to soldiers on personal civil legal matters.
The health service support (HSS) provides flexible, versatile, and fully modernized HSS units to support the rapid deployment of a CONUS-based, force-projection army, The medical force will assure a medical presence with the solider and, at the same time, provide state-of-the-art medical and surgical treatment and evacuation, limited only by the operational movement. This support will ensure that battlefield casualties are treated and evacuated quickly (FM 100-5).
The basic health service mission is to preserve the fighting strength. Health service support involves the prevention of illness through field sanitation and personal hygiene. It also involves obtaining medical support that ranges from sick call (conducted by battery aidmen) to the processing of casualties. Carrying out this mission requires the implementation of a full array of services. Some services are as follows:
- Dental support.
- Veterinary and preventive medicine activities.
- Medical supply and maintenance.
- Optical support.
- Laboratory support
- Command and control.
The battalion treatment team can provide limited medical services (administer first aid, give emergency treatment to patients who must be evacuated, and handle deceased personnel). The section is supervised by a physician's assistant. It operates a clearing station and provides medical treatment for the battalion headquarters.
The battalion aid station is normally located with the battalion trains. Ambulance support is provided by the ambulance team (one vehicle). Given the limitations of one ambulance and the likely dispersion of the firing batteries, the battery commanders and platoon leaders should designate a vehicle to be used for casualty evacuation to the battalion aid station.
At the battery level, the combat medics provide medical support to the unit. They are at the lowest level on the medical support chain. They are generally limited in the amount and types of care they can give the patients. Care is limited to treating minor injuries and reducing the effects of serious wounds. They rely on the battery for evacuation support.
In the divisional MLRS battery, there are three organic combat medics. They can provide limited medical services (first aid and emergency treatment to patients who must be evacuated). Additional medical support is provided by medical companies from the DISCOM.
In the nondivisional MLRS battery, medical support is provided by the battalion combat medic section.
Evacuation from the unit is mainly the responsibility of the unit. Units are required to evacuate their personnel to ambulance exchange points or supporting field hospitals. However, the medical companies supporting the MLRS unit can evacuate casualties. Evacuation by using medical company support is done through coordinated or previously established channels to the designated clearing station or combat zone hospital. Beyond that, medical companies are responsible for the evacuation of the patients if care is required beyond the capability of the treatment facility.
Air evacuation support is available to the corps. This support is provided by the aeromedical company from the corps aviation brigade. The external SOP of the supporting unit should be consulted for the procedures to request aeromedical support.
Class VIII: Medical Supplies
Medical supplies are obtained through medical channels. Items required by a battalion aid station are requisitioned by the primary care physician through the supporting medical unit. Nondivisional MLRS units under corps control are supported by the medical battalion located in the communications zone (COMMZ). Class VIII supplies for the divisional MLRS units are requisitioned from the MSB medical company.
Field services consist of food preparation, water purification, bakery, clothing and light textile repair, laundry and shower, parachute packing, air item maintenance, rigging supplies and equipment for airdrop, and mortuary affairs. Technological advances have improved the quality of field service support to the soldier from tactical showers to improved food service support from modular field kitchens. Provision of these basics is essential for the maintenance of soldier health, morale, and welfare (FM 100-5).
Services in the division, particularly in the forward areas, are limited. They are provided by the S&S company of the MSB with corps augmentation (see Figure 6-6).
Class I: Subsistence
Subsistence is provided through forward distribution points to combat units of the division. Corps supply and service (S&S) battalions operate COSCOM distribution points in the COMMZ. The supply and service (S&S) company of the MSB operates the distribution points at the DSA. Strength reports and any special requirements serve as the basis for computing Class I requirements.
Supplies are requisitioned through the proper logistics support unit at the support area. Unit distribution of Class I to the division is broken down into battalion lots in the DSA. Supplies are now picked up by the unit at the prescribed forward distribution point. Class VI supplies are issued with Class I supplies.
The MLRS units submit their requests directly to the supply unit operating the forward distribution point of the COSCOM or DSA, as appropriate.
Shower, Laundry, and Clothing Repair
Shower, laundry, and clothing repair are provided by the field service company (FSC). The FSC is the provider of tactical services to divisional and nondivisional units from the corps forward area to the FLOT.
Units are responsible for the search, recovery identification, care and evacuation of remains to the nearest collection site where mortuary affairs personnel will operate the initial collection point.
Temporary burial by the unit is approved only when evacuation of remains is not possible. All remains temporarily interred will be recovered as soon as the situation permits and evacuated to the nearest collection point or mortuary.
Ensuring quality of life is a command responsibility. Quality of life and family considerations affect every soldier's readiness and willingness to fight. Effective personnel services, health services, and field services ease immediate solider concerns. The soldier who fights best is the one who is reassured that his loved ones are adequately cared for at the home station, especially when units deploy from forward-presence locations. The family supports the soldier best when it is assured that the soldier is appropriately cared for. Accurate and timely delivery of mail enhances the quality of life of the soldier in the field. Command information provided to family members must be as timely as possible, especially in an age of instant communications where a soldier's friend may be sharing news about a loved one in almost real time. A direct relationship exists between adequate, well-thought-out soldier morale, and combat effectiveness (FM 100-5).
A postal element, assigned by the corps DS postal company, receives and separates mail by battalion and then turns it over to the brigade S1. The battalion mail clerk receives and sorts the mail by task organization. He distributes/delivers it to the certified unit mail handler.
Class VI: Personal Demand Items
Class VI supplies consist mainly of Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) items. Examples are toilet articles, tobacco, and confections. The Class VI system becomes operational when the exchange operation becomes non operational. The request for Class VI supplies is submitted with the request for Class I. Class VI supplies are picked up with Class I resupply.
Maintaining ties with home is essential to sustaining the morale of our soldiers. Unit commanders should consider publishing and distributing newsletters to keep families in touch with the activities of deployed soldiers as well as arranging for local newspapers to be delivered for circulation within the unit.
Morale, Welfare and Recreation
Soldiers require the opportunity to relax and maintain an adequate level of physical fitness. Without these opportunities, the mental toughness and endurance required to fight and win stand to be degraded. Unit commanders, assisted by the Bn staff, can address these needs through actions like deploying sports equipment, coordinating for library material, etc.
Chaplain activities are provided by the unit ministry team (one chaplain and one chaplain's assistant) operating from the combat trains. This team is dedicated to serving the spiritual needs of soldiers. The activities of the chaplain are coordinated through the S1 and are published in paragraph 4 of the FA support plan. Chaplain activities include the following:
- Providing worship opportunities.
- Administering sacraments, rites, and ordinances.
- Providing pastoral care and counseling.
- Advising the commander and staff on matters of religion, morals, and morale.
- Ministering to those suffering battle fatigue.
- Providing religious support to enhance soldier morale and unit cohesion.
- Routinely visiting unit soldiers in nearby hospitals.
General supply support encompasses the provision of clothing, water, barrier material, and major end items in support of the force. These classes of supply include all the systems that support the soldier. The quality and acceptability of rations, clothing, and sundry packages are critical in sustaining the morale of soldiers, enhancing their ability to perform effectively (FM 100-5).
Class II: Clothing and Organizational Equipment
This class applies to all supplies and equipment other than principal items and cryptographic equipment prescribed by TOE, common tables of allowances (CTAs), and PLLs. Class II supplies include clothing, individual equipment, tool sets, administrative supplies, tentage, and housekeeping supplies.
Class II supply requests are made through the supporting supply unit at the logistics support area. The unit draws its Class II resupply from the logistics support area supporting the unit.
Class IV: Barrier/Fortification and Construction Materials
This class of supplies includes barrier, construction, or fortification material and the lightweight camouflage support system. Some Class IV items are regulated through command channels. Requisitions for regulated Class IV items (normally, fortification and barrier material) are submitted through command channels. Items not regulated, such as small quantities of nails and common electrical, plumbing, and similar hardware, are requested or obtained from the supporting logistics unit.
The battery supply section picks up the Class IV items from the Class IV forward distribution point located in the support area. In some cases, corps or division may deliver requested critical items directly to the unit.
Class VII: Major End Items
The issuing of major end items (launchers and HEMTTs) is closely controlled through command channels. The commander issues priorities for the replacement of losses. He considers item availability, unit mission, and the tactical situation.
Requests for major end items normally are processed in the form of battle damage reports. These reports are consolidated at command level and processed through command channels. Requests for controlled non battle loss items are submitted through command channels. Requests for issue are approved by the maneuver commander. Major end items of equipment may be delivered to the unit, or the unit may have to pick up the items from a designated support unit.
Class X: Nonstandard Items
Nonstandard supplies are items intended for support of nonmilitary programs. They include agriculture, food, clothing, and medical supplies and economic development items if resources of the area are inadequate. Class X supply is handled through civil affairs units. These units estimate requirements and supervise the distribution of supplies.
Stocks of unclassified maps are maintained for the division by the S&S company of the MSB. For units under corps control, they are maintained by a designated S&S company. The S4 requests unclassified maps through Class II channels on the basis of requirements established by the S2.
The S&S company of the MSB purifies and distributes water. It normally establishes water points in the BSAs, DSAs, and COMMZ.
OTHER CSS RELATED FUNCTIONS
The S1 plans and coordinates EPW operations, collection points, and evacuation procedures. EPWs are evacuated from the battalion area as rapidly as possible. The capturing battery is responsible for the following:
- Guarding prisoners until relieved by proper authority.
- Recovering weapons and equipment.
- Removing documents with intelligence value.
- Reporting to the TOC and ALOC.
Prisoners may be evacuated to the vicinity of the ALOC or UMCP for processing and initial interrogation. Crews of vehicles undergoing repair or unoccupied mechanics act as guards. Prisoners are then moved to the brigade EPW collection point on returning logistics vehicles or by transportation coordinated by the S4. As necessary, the S2 reviews and reports any documents or information of immediate value. The S4 coordinates evacuation of large amounts of enemy equipment. Wounded prisoners are treated through normal medical channels but are kept separated from US and allied patients. For additional information on treatment and handling of EPWs. see FM 27-10.
Thorough NBC decontamination for personnel and equipment is performed by the division or corps decontamination unit with support from the contaminated unit. The decontamination unit will provide specialized equipment and expertise. Priorities for decontamination are established by higher headquarters. Therefore, decontamination support may not be immediately available. This support is coordinated through the FA brigade HQ for MLRS battalions in a FA brigade, through corps artillery HQ for MLRS battalions under corps control, and through the div arty HQ for the divisional MLRS battery.
Operational decontamination is performed by the HHS battery or the firing battery HQ section. This operation requires the use of the M17 Sanator (available in the HQ section of divisional batteries or the HHS of the MLRS battalion).
Planners must be prepared for mass casualties, mass destruction of equipment, and the destruction or loss of effectiveness of entire units. Battalion units that have been catastrophically depleted or rendered ineffective are returned to combat effectiveness through reconstitution.
Commanders reconstitute by either reorganization or regeneration. The intensive nature of regeneration requires that a unit be pulled out of combat and is therefore not a Bn commander's prerogative (see FM 100-10).
Reorganization is the action taken to shift resources within a degraded unit to increase its combat power. Measures taken include the following:
- Cross-leveling equipment and personnel.
- Matching operational weapon systems with crews.
- Forming composite units.
Immediate battlefield reorganization is the quick and often temporary restoration of units conducted during an operation.
Deliberate reorganization is a permanent restructuring of the unit. Deliberate reorganization is supported with higher echelon resources and must be approved by the parent-unit commander one echelon higher than that reorganized.
Weapon system replacement operations (WSRO) is a method to supply the combat commander with fully operational replacement weapon systems. Three terms which are often used in describing WSRO are discussed below (see Figure 6-7).
- A ready-for-issue weapon is a weapon that is mechanically operable according to current standards and has all ancillary equipment (fire control, machine guns, radio mounts, and radios) installed. The vehicle has been fully fueled, and basic issue items are on board in boxes. There is no ammunition on board, and the gaining unit must provide the crew.
- A ready-to-fight weapon system is a crewed, ready-for-issue weapon with ammunition stored on board. The weapon has been boresighted, and boresight has been verified.
- Linkup is the process of joining a ready-for-issue weapon with a trained crew.
WSRO is simply a procedure for bringing a weapon system to a ready-to-fight condition and handing it off to the combat unit. It involves making a vehicle ready to issue and marrying it to a complete crew, which makes it ready to fight. WSRO is an intensively managed process for giving the commander usable weapon systems in the shortest possible time.
Logistics Operations with the Marine Corps
There are some fundamental differences between the services in their approach to logistics. The MEF has a force service support group (FSSG) of eight battalions which are task organized based on the missions. The MEF normally conducts operations within 50 miles of its support base which is generally established around a major sea port or air-head. The FSSG is resourced to support all classes of supply and deploys with 60 days of sustainability. The FSSG will support the ground combat element (GCE) via a smaller mobile combat service support element (CSSE) that will provide direct support and remain close to the GCE.
Corps MLRS battalions are supplemented with attached MSTs for intermediate DS (third echelon) vehicle, fire control, and communications maintenance.
MLRS units normally deploy with a 15-day package of supplies. They will receive a supplemental PLL/ASL stockage that equates to the support package of the MAGTF prior to, or during, deployment.
MLRS units have organic ammunition resupply vehicles. They will retain responsibility for ammunition resupply from the supporting CSSE forward to the firing units. Excessive distances (80+ km) between the firing units and the CSSE will adversely impact on operations by reducing the resupply rate. This will ultimately result in a logistically driven reduction in the rate at which an MLRS unit can engage targets.
The USMC will provide classes of supply I, II, III, IV, VI, VII (common only), and VIII. Additionally, they will requisition and position MLRS ammunition (both rockets and missiles) at the FSSG, and provide all small arms Class V at the forward ASP. Similarly, the MAGTF will process class IX requests from the MLRS unit and its attached MSTs for replenishment of PLL/ASL. The MAGTF will provide overflow DS maintenance, some GS maintenance support, and responsibility for retrograde of all depot level repairable to the appropriate depot level agency (see Figure 6-8).
The supply system is a Department of Defense (DOD) system and should not have a significant impact. The challenge is the incompatibility of the Army unit level logistics system (ULLS) and the USMC asset tracking for logistics and supply system (ATLASS). There will be a need for Army MLRS units to manually enter PLL/ASL replenishment part requisition statuses into the ULLS, based on manual feedback from the supporting FSSE. Similarly, Army MLRS units will need to submit manual requisitions using USMC forms to the supporting FSSE so that they can enter the requisition into ATLASS. This can be facilitated by MLRS logistics liaison at the FSSE.
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