Sunday, November 20, 2011

Program Special Operations Forces Warrior

U.S. Army Colonel James H. Smith leads the Program Executive Office for SOF Warrior (PEO-SW). PEOSW equips SOF to enhance lethality, mobility and survivability while performing ground SOF activities across the spectrum of conflict in all environmental conditions. PEO-SW manages a portfolio that includes more than 83 programs with an investment budget of over $2.2 billion of MFP-11 funds over the FYDP. The portfolio includes five primary commodity areas:  ground mobility; visual augmentation systems; ammunition and demolition; weapon systems; and individual/medical equipment. The focus is on rapid and cost-effective acquisition of overmatch capabilities that allow the SOF warfighter to successfully carry out the mission while significantly increasing survivability.

The PM for the Family of Special Operations Forces Vehicles (PM FSOV) is responsible for the acquisition and product improvement of special operations vehicles in three main categories: light, medium and heavy. Currently, the primary systems being managed in the ground mobility portfolio are: the lightweight tactical all-terrain cehicle (LTATV); the light mobility vehicle (LMV); the all-terrain vehicle (ATV); the ground mobility vehicle (GMV); the SOF RG-31 and RG-33 mine resistant ambush protected vehicles (MRAP); and the MRAP all-terrain vehicle (M-ATV). Currently, PM FSOV is managing the pro curement of over 500 of these specialized vehicles and the sustainment of over 1,500 vehicles in support of the unique needs of USSOCOM’s component commands.

The LTATV is a side-by-side-seat vehicle that provides a light, all-terrain capability to allow SOF to undertake operations across a wide variety of missions with increased mobility and maneuverability. The LTATV is internally transportable by H-53, H-47 and V-22 variant aircraft, carries two personnel, can be used for a multitude of operations from logistic support to casualty evacuation, and provides a high degree of speed and mobility over rough terrain. 147 LTATVs have been fielded to date, and an additional 72 will be fielded this year. The LMV will be a new platform to provide SOF with a highly agile, maneuverable, long-distance ground vehicle. The LMV will focus on mobility and lethality while being internally air-transportable in aircraft such as the V-22 and H-47 variants, in addition to providing netready capabilities, power and support to multiple missions in various configurations. PEO-SW is currently seeking potential materiel solutions with research and development efforts beginning later this year.

The ATV is a new platform which will provide a lightweight, all-terrain vehicle capability to supplement and augment PM FSOV across a myriad of special operations missions. The ATVs will provide an extremely flexible, internally transportable vehicle for rotary wing assets and will allow fully combat equipped SOF operators to move around the battle space rapidly in terrain not easily navigated by larger, heavier vehicles. ATVs have been used effectively as mission platforms and in conjunction with larger vehicles and will continue to be used to meet the complete mission profile of individual mobility platforms in the SOF community. PEOSW will seek materiel solutions for the ATV in 2011. 

The GMV is a standardized joint SOF combat vehicle with the operational flexibility to support the SOF core activities of direct action, special reconnaissance, unconventional warfare, counterterorism, security force assistance and counterinsurgency operations. The GMV is currently a M1165A1B3 High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle with modifications that enable SOF operators to conduct unique missions. Current efforts include developing lighterweight solutions to existing components and a command, control, communications, computers, ISR suite that has a reduced footprint, enabling more mission-related cargo. 43 GMVs have been fielded this year, and an additional 96 will be fielded throughout 2010. 940 legacy GMVs are also currently being sustained.

PM FSOV has currently fielded 50 RG-31, 259 RG-33 4x4 MRAP vehicles, and 32 RG-33 armored utility variants to SOF warfighters. These vehicles provide protection for SOF warfighters against the expanded use of improvised explosive devices and provide a lethal offensive capability in the form of an integrated remote weapon station. Also this year, PM FSOV will field 100 RG-31 vehicles with an independent suspension system and has initiated a block upgrade of the existing RG-33 fleet. This upgrade includes installation of a new upgraded suspension system for enhanced mobility and other upgrades identified as emerging requirements from the operators in the field. An additional 58 new RG-33A1s are scheduled for delivery in early 2011.


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