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Bradley Fighting Vehicle through its retirement. The Bradley family of armored combat vehicles will be an integral part of the Army force structure until fiscal year 2045. During this timeframe, the M919 depleted uranium cartridge will provide soldiers with a lethal fighting capability that also enhances their survival on the battlefield.
Question. In fiscal year 2003, the Army proposed 18 systems terminations. Some are being reconsidered. For example, in fiscal year 2003 the Army terminated the Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures (ATIRCM) system, yet this program received $75 million in the fiscal year 2004 budget request. Please explain the apparent inconsistency.
Answer. The ATIRCM program was not officially terminated in the fiscal year 2003 budget submission. With the fiscal year 2003 submission, the Army zeroed the ATIRCM procurement but left research, development, test, and evaluation funding in place to examine cost-reduction strategies within the program. The Army eliminated funding for procurement because of several factors including, poorly defined requirements, escalating costs, and to a lesser extent, because the Air Force and the Navy in 2000 withdrew from the Common Missile Warning System (CMWS). The Army transferred funding to the Special Operations Command for procurement of 97 ATIRCM/CMWS systems through fiscal year 2008.
In the fiscal year 2004 budget submission, the ATIRCM program contains funding for a new procurement strategy to develop an affordable counter-infrared program. The Army completed an aircraft survivability study to determine the optimal strategy to field survivability equipment to its conventional forces. The strategy proposes installing wiring harnesses for the modernized fleet (AH-64D Longbow, UH-60M Black Hawk, and CH-47F Improved Cargo Helicopter) and procuring countermeasure systems (ATIRCM, CMWS, improved countermeasure dispensers, and advanced infrared countermeasure munitions) in unit size sets. A unit size set is defined as a corps-, division-, or brigade-sized element. This revised procurement strategy offers an affordable solution to counter-infrared technology fielding and is funded in the fiscal year 2004 budget submission.
Question. Are there systems on the fiscal year 2004 list over which the Army has reservations?
Answer. Based on lessons learned from the war on terrorism, the Army reviewed ongoing operations and revalidated limited numbers for four systems, that had been terminated during the preparation of the fiscal year 2004 budget submission: Tactical Exploitation System (TES), M919 25mm ammunition, Stinger missile, and the Joint Tactical Terminal. As part of the fiscal year 2004 budget submission, the Army also generated a list of critical unfunded priorities. Three of the revalidated systems were placed on this list (TES, M919, and Stinger). In all cases, the unfunded priorities procure systems to meet an identified Army shortfall in the global war on terrorism.
Stryker Brigade Combat Capabilities
Question. The Army plans to establish six Stryker Brigade Combat Teams (SBCTs) to be supported by approximately 300 Stryker vehicles per team. From fiscal year 2000 through 2003, $2.8 billion has been provided to purchase 1,100 vehicles. The fiscal year 2004 budget request includes $955 million to purchase 301 additional vehicles. The Office of the Secretary of Defense has recently reconsidered the extent of the Stryker program. Vehicles to support the first four SBCTs have been fully funded through the fiscal year 2004 budget request. The fifth and sixth brigades have been put on hold pending an Army study due to the Office of the Secretary of Defense in July 2003. Section 8121 of the fiscal year 2003 Defense Appropriations Act requires the Department of Defense to program and budget for no less than six Stryker Brigades.
Please provide your assessment of the state of the Stryker program.
Answer. SBCTs provide an invaluable means of spearheading Army Transformation. The SBCT trains junior officers and noncommissioned officers—tomorrow's commanders and command sergeants major—in the tactics, techniques, and procedures that will inform employment of the Objective Force. The Army has resourced six SBCTs in the Future Years Defense Program to contribute to fulfilling the "1—4-2—1" defense construct and national security requirements. However, at this time, the Secretary of Defense has only authorized the procurement of the first four brigades. The Army will provide the Secretary of Defense with a plan for Stryker Brigades five and six.
Question. Has development of all variants of the Stryker been completed?
Answer. No. Development of the Mobile Gun System and the Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Reconnaissance Vehicle continues. The initial low-rate production decision for both vehicles is scheduled for December 2003 with first unit deliveries scheduled for December 2004.
Question. What is the status of the Mobile Gun System (MGS) and Reconnaissance variants of the Stryker? Is the development of these variants complete?
Answer. Development of these variants continues with the initial low-rate production decision scheduled for December 2003 and first unit deliveries scheduled for December 2004. Reconnaissance Vehicle (RV) development is near completion, with 66 to be fielded by mid April 2003. Modifications to the RV are a result of lessons learned coming out of testing and are designed to ensure the vehicle meets its requirements and is safe for soldier use.
Question. What type of test ammunition is required to support completing the development of the MGS? Are the stocks of this ammunition sufficient to support development of the MGS?
Answer. Qualification testing of six types of 105mm ammunition cartridges supports MGS development. They include the M900 armor-piercing, fin-stabilized, discarding sabot; M456A2 high-explosive, anti-tank (HEAT); M393 high explosive; and training rounds for each. MGS development will use about 500 rounds of each during ammunition compatibility and safety qualification testing. The Army has sufficient, serviceable stocks of existing M900 sabot and M456 HEAT cartridges and their associated training cartridges for use with the MGS. The Army does, however, lack sufficient, serviceable stocks of high explosive and anti-personnel cartridges to support the MGS. These cartridges have passed their 20-year service life. In parallel and in conjunction with the MGS development, the Army is re-procuring a replacement for the M393A2 high explosive plastic and a matching training cartridge. In addition, the Army is developing a canister cartridge to meet the antipersonnel requirement.
STRYKER/M113 Comparative Analysis
Question. Section 113(c) of the fiscal year 2001 Defense Authorization Act required the Army to conduct an evaluation of Medium Armored Vehicles. The results of the evaluation were submitted to the Congress in January of 2003. The evaluation compared the capabilities and characteristics of the Stryker Infantry Carrier Vehicle (ICV) and the M113A3 Armored Personnel Carrier (APC). The Army evaluation concludes that the ICV provides advantages in the areas of force protection and survivability, support to the dismounted assault and close fight, and mobility. Given this conclusion, the Deputy Secretary of Defense approved obligation of funds appropriated for the Stryker. The fiscal year 2004 budget request includes $955 million for an additional 301 vehicles.
What are the main differences in the survivability of the Stryker compared to the M113 (with and without armor kits)? Which vehicle is superior in this regard and why?
Answer. The primary difference in survivability is that the Stryker has protection against 14.5mm threats, while the M113A3 provides protection from 7.62 mm threats. The M113A3 needs several hours of preparation if 14.5mm armor protection is required. The Army does not own any M113A3 14.5mm armor sets. With addon armor kits, both vehicles can provide protection against rocket-propelled grenades (RPG). The Army will have RPG armor for the Stryker, but does not have any RPG armor kits for its M113A3s. Stryker does not have the additional noise associated with "track slap." With its lower acoustic signature, Stryker is less likely to be detected than a M113A3. Additionally, the automatic fire extinguishing system in the Stryker ICV can put out a fire after the vehicle is hit and provides a better chance of preserving the lives of the crew and enabling the vehicle, if still mobile, to continue the mission. The lack of an onboard automatic fire detection and extinguishing capability places the M113A3 crew at greater risk than the crew of the Stryker ICV. Overall, the Stryker is significantly more survivable than the M113A3 and, therefore, has a greater capability to safely deliver soldiers to the fight than theM113A3.
Question. What are the differences between these systems for "limp home" capability? Which vehicle is superior in this regard and why?
Answer. The Stryker has superior "limp home" capability—also referred to as residual mobility. Immobilized vehicles result in the loss of combat power—each vehicle and its squad is one-quarter of the platoon's combat power. It is likely that a vehicle will remain under enemy fire following a mine strike or other engagement that results in damage. If an M113A3 loses a track, it becomes immobilized and the squad must defend the vehicle while the crew repairs it—requiring at least an hour to prepare the vehicle to "limp home." However, even after losing one or more wheels, the Stryker can immediately "limp home" and self-evacuate to a protected position to make repairs or continue the operation.
Question. What are the performance differences in supporting dismounted assault and close combat? Which vehicle is superior in this regard and why?
Answer. The Stryker is superior in its ability to support the infantry squad in combat. With its superior armor and the remote weapon station (RWS), the Stryker commander can operate the integrated RWS under protection and provide accurate direct fire against targets from a stationary position to support dismounted infantry operations. Conversely, a M113A3 commander must operate his pintle-mounted weapon from exposed position. Moreover, RWS day and night sight pictures can be shown on the squad leader's display, which is visible to the entire squad riding in the Stryker and allows the squad a 360 degree view of the surrounding area before dismounting. This increases the fidelity of the squad's situational awareness, enhancing their survivability and likelihood of mission success. To replicate this capability, the M113A3 gunner must scan the surrounding area with binoculars or a night vision scope while exposed, and communicate his observations to the squad verbally.
Question. What are the performance differences between these vehicles in the areas of mobility (both on- and off-road), transportability, and recovery?
Answer. The Stryker has much greater fuel economy than the M113A3 over flat, level primary roads, and is self-deployable by highway. The M113A3 may require transportation support for longer intra-theater moves and movements to and from ports of debarkation/embarkation. The comparison evaluation results reflected that the Stryker is able to deliver an infantry squad to the fight faster when employed in the projected operational terrain mix. The Stryker's superior road movement capability enables the entire Stryker Brigade Combat Team to self deploy in parallel with other means of intra-theater transport, such as C-130 aircraft and theater support vessels, or when other transport means are not advantageous or available, to concentrate combat power or fight dispersed as required.
The Stryker and the M113A3 are air transportable in C-130, C-5, and C-17 aircraft. One vehicle, a Stryker or M113A3, can be transported in a C-130. A C-17 can transport three vehicles of either type. The M113A3 is smaller and lighter, enabling strategic air deployments by C-5 to carry two additional vehicles. The Ml 13A3 has better capability in soft soil, but when it gets stuck, it requires extraction by external recovery assets. The Stryker's self-recovery and likevehicle-recovery capabilities reduce its disadvantages in terrain favorable to the M113A3. With pivot steering, the M113A3 does have a better turning radius than the Stryker.
Question. Please summarize the Army's experience with operational vignettes at Fort Lewis, the National Training Center, and elsewhere comparing the performance of these vehicles.
Answer. The Army is pleased with the Stryker's performance at Fort Lewis and the National Training Center. During the comparison evaluation operational vignettes, both vehicles adequately supported platoon missions, but the Stryker provided better overall operational capability. Analysis of the comparison evaluation technical data identified differences between the vehicles and the results of operational vignettes complemented those findings. Soldiers participating in these vignettes overwhelmingly favored the Stryker over the M113A3. When capabilities of both vehicles are compared, considering the variables of mission, enemy, terrain, troops, and time available, the Stryker provides a greater capability across a wider range of possible operating conditions.
During Millennium Challenge 2002, the Stryker proved itself quite mobile in the mountainous terrain of the National Training Center. The opposing forces remarked that the Stryker surmounted terrain that no other vehicle, wheeled or tracked, had been able to climb. While both vehicles provide the basic capabilities to conduct required tasks and subtasks, mission success is impacted by how soldiers employ the vehicle. The Stryker provides significant advantages in the areas of force protection and survivability, support to the dismounted assault and close fight, and mobility.
Future Combat Systems
Question. The Army describes the Future Combat System as its number one priority supporting transformation to the Objective Force. The fiscal year 2004 budget request includes $1.7 billion in Army research and development funding. This includes FCS System Design and Development (SDD) funding, as well as funding for Netfires and the Objective Force Indirect Fire system. The later two elements of FCS were included in the Crusader budget amendment proposed by the Administration for fiscal year 2003.
What is the current status of the Future Combat System? Please outline for the Committee the upcoming steps in the development process for FCS.
Answer. The FCS program is in the latter stages of the concept and technology development phase of the DoD acquisition model. The Army and DARPA have identified the concepts and technologies necessary to develop, integrate, field, and sustain FCS Increment I. The Army will recommend to DoD that the program transition from concept and technology development to system development and demonstration at the FCS Milestone B Defense Acquisition Board in May 2003. The next major milestone is at the initial production decision in 2008 leading to the Army's initial operating capability at the end of the decade.
Question. The Committee understands that the Army has recently released 24 requests for proposal (RFPs) for various technologies that will comprise FCS. Please explain the primary areas of emphasis of these RFPs.
Answer. The 23 sub-contract RFPs and one sub-contract released by the Army are primarily focused on unmanned systems; supportability; training; and command, control, communications, and computers, and intelligence surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR). Fully 12 of the 23 RFPs emphasize C4ISR, because the Army recognizes that network connectivity and data fusion are the most critical aspect of the FCS system of systems concept.
A unique aspect of FCS versus other individual program developments is that a Lead Systems Integrator is horizontally integrating all of the RFPs. This horizontal integration is occurring across all manned, unmanned, unattended sensors, and munitions within the FCS. In the past, larger emphasis was placed on vertical integration rather than horizontal integration. Horizontal integration is an attempt to improve connectivity between systems and capitalize on potential force effectiveness increases from the synergistic application of combat power across a force.
Question. The Committee is aware that the Milestone B decision for FCS is approaching in May of 2003. Explain what this decision represents for the development of the FCS.
Answer. The Milestone B decision represents the Office of the Secretary of Defense's approval for the FCS program to transition from concept and technology development phase to the system development and demonstration phase. A decision to proceed to the systems development and demonstration phase allows the Army, DARPA, and the Lead Systems Integrator to start the systems integration and demonstration activities necessary to enter production. More importantly, the FCS Milestone B decision represents a major step in the Army's desire to transform and achieve Objective Force capability before the end of the decade.
Question. The Committee is aware of discussions within the Army indicating that the FCS program is between $40 and $50 million short of funds to support the program through the Milestone B decision. Why? What work must be performed or accelerated in order to keep the program on schedule?
Answer. The Army and DARPA team need to reprogram $30 million dollars from within the Army to support FCS modeling and simulation (M&S) efforts. The Army believes it must build and sustain a state-of-the-art M&S capability to accomplish the engineering effort required for the FCS program. This M&S capability will increase the efficiency and quality of the design effort, allow the design team to prototype subcomponents in a three-dimensional synthetic environment, and test performance on a synthetic battlefield from different locations in a collaborative fashion. The Army sees M&S as the only way to design the FCS system of systems and make it work efficiently. Specifically, these resources will provide government licenses and services required to deliver, maintain, and improve the services of the FCS advanced collaborative environment. Included is the software and hardware backbone to integrate government-owned data and applications.
Question. The Army has chosen an acquisition strategy that relies on a Lead Systems Integrator (LSI) to coordinate the early stages of the program. Why has the Army chosen this strategy? What is the primary contribution of the LSI to development of the FCS?
Answer. The Army and DARPA chose an LSI to help manage and integrate FCS because of the magnitude and complexity of the task. The Army studied the acquisition approach of other large and complex programs, such as the National Missile Defense and International Space Station programs, to determine the best method of managing and horizontally integrating a large engineering effort. The Army concluded that the LSI concept provided the most efficient and lowest risk approach to integrate the system of systems concepts required by FCS. The Army believes that with a LSI, that it can integrate architectures and platforms, and manage the interface requirements more efficiently and effectively. Additionally, the Army is transforming away from functional mission areas and related platform development, to a more horizontally integrated process. To break the functional mission area mold, the Army chose to competitively select an LSI to provide horizontal systems engineering development and management across the FCS system of systems.
Question. This program is the joint responsibility of the Army and DARPA. Please explain the respective roles and funding responsibilities for the Army and DARPA in development of the FCS.
Answer. DARPA and the Army combined their talents to define concepts, identify technologies, and begin development of FCS using a memorandum of agreement (MOA). The Army and DARPA have a 55/45 cost share agreement, respectively, for the concept and technology development phase of the FCS program effort. This MOA extends through 2005 and both parties are currently updating the MOA to define the FCS Increment II concept and technology demonstration phase activities. Generally, DARPA has focused on its forte of thinking outside of the box and developing novel and higher risk technologies. The Army has focused on leveraging and maturing DARPA work and technologies to the degree that they can be integrated into weapons systems.
Non Line Of Sight Cannon
Question. In fiscal year 2003, the Administration proposed a budget amendment to terminate the Crusader artillery system. This proposal recommended $195.5 million to continue developing an indirect fire support element for the Future Combat System (FCS). To this, the Congress added $173 million, for a total of $368.6 million. The funding was intended to develop a firing platform as well as weapon system integration. This funding was provided specifically to the program management staff that had been developing Crusader.
Mr. Secretary, the Congress provided nearly $370 million to continue developing an indirect fire weapon for the Army including the development of a more deployable chassis. What has the Army accomplished to date with this funding?
Answer. To date, the Army/United Defense/General Dynamics team has entered the preliminary design phase for the non-line of sight cannon (NLOS-C >. The NLOS-C is a manned ground vehicle that is deployable on a C-130 aircraft. The NLOS-C embodies the major design drivers that will effect an overall design for all of the other manned ground vehicle variants (mortar, direct fire cannon, etc.) in the FCS. The team has made significant up-front system engineering effort to generate and allocate theperformance and functional requirements to support component design activities. The team has performed the majority of the design, analysis, and development efforts necessary to conduct detailed individual subsystem and component design within the vehicle. The team has accomplished preliminary design analyses, design option assessments, and architecture development for the electronics, software, propulsion, suspension, crew station, ammunition handling, armament, cooling, and survivability.
The engineering, architecture analysis, and design work apply not only to the NLOS-C, but to all of the other FCS manned ground vehicles. In addition, a best technical approach for the NLOS-C was presented to and accepted unanimously by the program manager, user, and Lead System Integrator. Overall, the funding has enabled the Army to substantially reduce the schedule and cost risk to the FCS manned ground vehicles and has provided a head start for the FCS system design and development phase. Finally, the FCS NLOS-C demonstrator is scheduled to begin testing this summer.
Question. An area of concern in the Committee's fiscal year 2003 deliberations was integration of a large artillery piece onto a relatively light chassis. What progress has been made to solve this problem?
Answer. The physical and dynamic forces exerted on a firing platform have been analyzed using high-fidelity computer modeling techniques. These computer models have proven to be extremely accurate in the past for measuring force loads and vehicle properties. Various suspension and propulsion options were also analyzed to determine the effect of the force transfers. Results have indicated that the addition of stabilizers to the rear of the vehicle provide sufficient support to reduce the vehicle settling time and forces experienced by the crew. Timeline analyses have also been done and confirm that this solution will support the user's aggressive response requirements. A system demonstrator is being manufactured to confirm these analyses and will undergo live testing at Yuma Proving Ground this summer.
Question. The Committee understands that the Line of Sight variant of the Future Combat System (FCS) and the NLOS cannon will share a common chassis. What engineering and design challenges confront the Army in developing a common chassis for these systems?
Answer. The current development approach for all FCS manned ground vehicles is to share a common chassis design with common subsystems where practical. The