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Needs Emphasis

2.1 Process Ground Targets

* Applicability of Firefinder Radar zones during Stability Operations. [Fire Support]:


1. Fire support personnel use Critical Friendly Zones (CFZ) during STABOPS when they are not necessary. CFZs are necessary to prioritize large volumes of radar acquisitions. It is expected that during STABOPS there will not be large numbers of radar acquisitions generating competing calls for fire. Any STABOPS radar acquisition will be a priority for potential response. Yet, fire support planners use CFZs in STABOPS based on experience in planning for conventional combat.

2. Fire support personnel do not routinely use Censor Zones (CZ) during STABOPS. The CZ prevents the unintentional acquisition of a friendly weapon system firing toward the radar. Because friendly indirect fire assets may be required to fire in any direction and because the radars will not be tasked to look in all directions, the chance of a radar unintentionally acquiring a friendly weapon system as a target is increased. NOTE: indirect fire weapon systems that fire from the CZ are not processed as a target by the Firefinder radar.


1. Do not automatically use CFZs during STABOPS. All acquisitions will most likely already be a priority for action.

2. Place CZs over all friendly indirect fire weapon system locations.

3. The brigade targeting officer should establish, move, confirm and cancel radar zone.

4. Implement a system for proper entry and recording of zones.

5. Discuss current and planned radar zones at all targeting meetings and fire support rehearsals.

6. Refer to FM 6-121, Field Artillery Target Acquisition.

2.2 Engage Ground Targets

* Artillery unit use of trained observers. [Fire Support]:

Units rely on a graduated response matrix that allowed the use of indirect fire without an observer if the threat was in a non-populated area. Only radar determined the effectiveness of the fires.

EXAMPLE: A factional mortar could be engaged with indirect fire if it was in a non-populated area.


1. Decisions about whether an area was non-populated was made by a map spot. There may be populated areas not shown on the map.

2. Radar can only determine the originating grid of mortar fire. Radar cannot determine if the target grid is located in a populated area, or in vicinity of other restricted areas.

3. Radar cannot tell if fires are sufficient or effective.

RESULT: The decision to use radar as the only eyes on target accepts considerable risk and complicated subsequent accountability.


1. Whenever possible, use a qualified observer to positively and accurately determine target location, control fires, assess effects and establish positive accountability.

2. Consider using a Quick Reaction Force (QRF) to engage a target with direct fires before responding with unobserved or radar only observed indirect fires.

2.3 Integrate Fire Support

* Brigade and task force Fire Support Officers (FSO) understanding the capabilities and limitations of Firefinder radars. [Fire Support]:


1. FSOs do not adequately advise maneuver commanders about how to best use radars to protect the force.

2. FSOs do not conduct a thorough analysis to determine where to best employ a Critical Friendly Zone (CFZ), and what size to make it.

3. CFZs are not kept current during the battle.

4. No one is assigned responsibility for shifting CFZs.

5. FSOs are too often not aware of Censor Zones (CZs) and how to use them.


1. Teach FSOs about the capabilities and limitations of Q36 and Q37 radars, so they can subsequently properly advise maneuver commanders.

2. Do a thorough analysis to determine the size, location and timing of CFZs.

3. Fix responsibility for moving CFZs with a specific individual; FM 6-71 recommends the brigade targeting officer.

4. Use CZs to protect friendly indirect fire assets from acquisition by friendly radars.

5. Reduce the size and number of CFZs to cover only mission critical assets.

* Stability Operations Firefinder radar positioning. [Fire Support]:

Typically Firefinder radars were attached to DS artillery battalions. These units positioned the radars for security and support with the DS artillery battalion TOC, or firing batteries in lodgement areas. Positioning factors include:

- cover
- security
- survey
- slope
- site to crest
- radiation danger

PROBLEM: The Q36 radar poses a significant radar hazard to personnel forward of the radar antenna. There is a 107 meter danger area 800 mils to the left and right of the Q 36 radar dish. Often in STABOPS, the radar must operate in extended azimuth mode to provide 6400 mil coverage. Therefore, the safety zone must extent in a 360 degree circle around the radar. Personnel, vehicles, and electrically activated or detonated munitions should not be positioned inside the danger zone.


1. Position the radar on the highest terrain in the position area, elevating the radar above other vehicles and personnel if you need 6400 mil coverage.

2. If higher terrain is not available, task the engineers to build a mound for the radar to sit on to get elevation for the radar dish.

3. If 6400 mil coverage is not required, and engineer assets are not available, then position the radar near the edge of the perimeter along the radar=s radiation azimuth.

4. Refer to:

- FM 6-161, with change 1, Field Artillery Target Acquisition
- TM 11-5840-354-10-1, Operator=s Manual for Radar Set AN/TPQ-36
- TB 43-0133, Hazard Criteria for CECOM Radiofrequency and Radiation Producing Equipment

* Brigade commanders authorize the use of indirect fires, but do not specify the type or amount of ammunition to be fired. [Fire Support]:

PROBLEM: When brigade commanders authorize the use of indirect fire, without specifying the type or amount of ammunition, it is not clear whether he approved the use of one round, one volley, or one indirect fire mission.

RESULT: Often units responded with maximum lethality without regard to previously defined graduated response matrix guidelines in the fire support annex, or the field artillery support plan.


1. Define and control the conditions for escalating or terminating the use of indirect fires as explicitly as the conditions for initial use are defined.

2. Define specifically what is authorized for indirect fire by type and number of rounds to be used, to avoid possible escalation and unnecessary collateral damage.

3. Use a response matrix to facilitate rapid engagements and to establish procedures to control requests for additional fires in excess of the response matrix guidelines. Do not exceed the established response without first receiving the brigade commander's approval.

4. Indirect fire characteristics in STABOPS:

- use of minimum essential force to nuetralize an aggressor
- minimize collateral damage
- absolute accuracy and accountability of fires

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