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Posts Tagged ‘PEO-Soldier’

PEO Soldier – Soldiers Test Newest Precision Targeting Device

Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

This is a great story by PEO Soldier’s Kyle Olson, updating you on their JETS program.

FORT GREELEY, Alaska – For nearly two weeks in mid-August, it seemed the only sound that could be heard between gusts of wind along a few of Fort Greeley’s Alaskan ridge lines was…


“Target Lock.” “Target Lock.”
“Lasing.” “Lasing.”
“Solution.” “Solution.”
“5…7…6…9.” “5…7…6…9.”
“4…2…5…2.” “4…2…5…2,” and so it went—more than two-thousand times.
Find a target. Check.
Identify the target. Check.
Range/Geolocate the target. Check
Call it. Verify it. Log it.
And do it again, and again, and again, and again.

Six teams of Forward Observers (FO) from the 1st Stryker Brigade’s 2nd Battalion, 8th Field Artillery Regiment and data collectors atop places like Windy Ridge and Donnelly Dome looked out over the Alaskan landscape. They picked out targets and called in target data acquired through the Joint Effects Targeting System, better known as JETS, as part of a Limited User Test (LUT). The Army’s Operational Test Command conducted the testing at the Fort Greeley Cold Region Test Center (CRTC).

JETS is a modular advanced sensor suite consisting of a hand-held target location module (HTLM), a precision azimuth and vertical angle module (PAVAM), and a laser marker module (LMM) that collectively offer the FO capabilities not contained in any currently fielded system. JETS allows them to quickly acquire and precisely locate targets.

When fielded, it will be the first precision targeting device of its kind provided to Soldiers.

“Its brand new cutting edge technology that is a paradigm shift in how the Field Artillery BOS (Branch of Service) is employed across the battle space,” said LTC Michael Frank, Product Manager Soldier Precision Targeting Devices (PM SPTD). With JETS, “I turn a [M777A2] howitzer or a Paladin into a giant sniper rifle. I’m dropping that round, with first round effects, on target.”


LTC Frank is guiding the development of JETS with the experienced hand of a FA officer with multiple deployments and more than 26 years in the Army. The lieutenant colonel emphasized that JETS not only provides greater precision, but also allows for a more rapid response. “Standoff doesn’t just mean range anymore,” LTC Frank said. “It means time. We can get kinetic effects on that target, and we don’t have to mess around with mensuration. We don’t have to take anywhere from 15 to 18 to 20 minutes to go through mensuration. We can get that target data to the guns and rounds out of the tube faster with JETS than without.”

According to CPT Eric Munn, JETS Assistant Product Manager (APM), “JETS will revolutionize how the Field Artillery conducts precision fire missions. A hand-held, stand alone, true precision targeting device that is fielded to every Forward Observer team will increase the agility and lethality of Field Artillery as a whole.”

Before the system is fielded, and well before Soldiers can experience the benefits of JETS on the battlefield, it must go through comprehensive and rigorous testing. While the 1st Stryker Brigade’s FOs could attest to the seemingly mind-numbing monotony of conducting thousands of data calls, they also understood the inherent value and importance of their mission.

“We have the ability to find things that are wrong with the system and have the capability of getting it changed,” said SPC Israel Wallace, FO, Delta Battery, 2nd Battalion, 8th Field Artillery Regiment (2-8 FAR). “We’d go up there, shoot grids, see if we can find anything wrong with it—see how long the batteries last, you name it.”

Although the Soldiers packed the JETS in their rucks and maneuvered through the Alaskan terrain to their observation posts, the LUT was not about the system’s durability on the move. It was about collecting enough data to verify its consistency, reliability, and ease of use.

“We don’t do a whole lot of rugged testing like throw it on the ground or anything like that,” SPC Israel said. “We’ll take it up there and use it all day long.” The Soldiers took note of things like the various connections and ports—were they easy to use or maybe vulnerable to snagging or breaking; was the tripod stable and easy to use; how did the system perform in the rain; and were the controls easy to use while wearing gloves?

According to CPT Munn, it’s essential that the JETS is developed with Soldiers in mind. “One of the most important parts of these tests is determining how suitable the JETS is for the Soldier and what we need to fix prior to fielding these systems to the Army,” he said. “The Soldier is the ultimate customer and we have to ensure that they can employ the system effectively and reliably.”

SGT Christopher Maurer, 2-8 FAR FO, appreciated the ability make a difference. “It’s good to know what it can do,” he said. “But, it’s [also] good to have that face to face with the people that actually designed it, so they can take in the feedback and actually do something about it.”

LTC Frank described how the Soldiers conducted the testing. “The Soldiers operated over five different lanes, incorporating different scenarios that put JETS through the type of mission scenarios it would see—not just if, but when it’s taken into a theater of combat,” LTC Frank said.

After spending several weeks training and then testing JETS, the Soldiers gained a special appreciation for the system and its capabilities. SGT Maurer especially appreciated the reduced weight when compared to the Lightweight Laser Designated Rangefinder (LLDR) and increased capability when compared to the Vector 21 Laser Target Locator (LTL). “They’re both kind of the far ends of the spectrum,” he said. “[JETS] is the perfect hybrid between having one module you can take and just go with, or you can bring everything.”

SPC Wallace echoed SGT Maurer’s sentiment. “If I was running around up in the mountains, constantly moving, setting up hasty [observation posts] I would take the JETS over the LLDR any day.”

The Operation Test Center will spend the next several weeks combing through the LUT data and then present PM SPTD with the test findings. Everything will be looked at and recommendations will be made. Some will affect training, and others will result in physical changes or even software updates.

Soldiers will have another opportunity to work with the JETS in the upcoming Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) scheduled for February 2018. The IOT&E, like all previous tests, will put the JETS in hands of Soldiers. They will put it through its paces ensuring the operational capabilities of this next generation precision targeting device are tested and verified to exacting detail before any Soldier uses the JETS to call for fire on a live target.

“Our goal in the Acquisition community is to increase our Soldiers’ survivability and ability to win on the battlefield,” CPT Munn said. “The JETS system accomplishes both tasks by giving the Forward Observer time and space to defeat enemies on the battlefield,” he added.

JETS is expected to be fielded to Soldiers in fourth quarter of Fiscal Year 2018 (July–September 2018).

Picture1Soldiers from the 1st Stryker Brigade’s 2nd Battalion, 8th Field Artillery Regiment put the Joint Effects Targeting System (JETS) through its paces at the Cold Region Test Center (CRTC), Fort Greeley, Alaska. The Soldiers, all Forward Observers (FO), spent several weeks testing and evaluating the JETS during the Limited User Test (LUT) conducted by the Army’s Operational Test Command. More than 2,000 data calls were logged on the systems by six teams of FOs and data collectors. JETS, a hand-held, stand alone, true precision targeting device, represents a capability not yet available to Forward Observers. One of the Soldiers characterized it as the perfect hybrid system, fitting neatly between the Vector 21 Laser Target Locator (LTL) and the larger Lightweight Laser Designator Rangefinder (LLDR). At 17 pounds, JETS weighs less than half of the LLDR and offers greater precision than the Vector 21.

(Photos by Kyle Olson, PEO Soldier)

PEO Soldier Publishes Updated Authorized Protective Eyewear List

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

PEO Soldier just released an updated version of the US Army Approved Protective Eyewear List, and it includes more options than ever.


You can download a .pdf of the above image at

PEO-Soldier Recommends Lithium Batteries And Offers FAQ

Monday, September 29th, 2014


PEO-Soldier has released an FAQ on the superiority of Lithium batteries over their Alkaline counterparts, citing a longer life and lighter weight as two of the benefits.

You can read the full FAQ here:

DSEi – PEO Soldier

Friday, September 13th, 2013

I am very pleased to see some representation at DSEi from the US Army in the form of my favorite organization, PEO Soldier.


They are here on behalf of Foreign Military Sales and are exhibiting those items that can be exported such as parachutes, helmets and armor plates.

PEO Soldier Portfolio 2013

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

PEO Soldier Portfolio FY2013

Here it is, in all its glory, the FY 2013 PEO SOldier portfolio. Think of it as a catalog of sorts, giving basic information for all of the commodities managed by PEO Soldier.

Protective Overgarment Garment Instructional Videos from PEO Soldier

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

PEO Soldier has released instructional videos for the various models of Protective Overgarment Garment designed to protect the wearer’s pelvic region from blast and frag associated with IEDs. The videos do a good job of demonstrating how to don and doff the systems.

Hawk Model

Crye Precision Model

PEO Soldier Celebrates 10th Anniversary

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

Last Friday, PEO Soldier celebrated its 10th Anniversary as a dedication to the Soldier and a reminder of the commitment of the critical role they play to bring the best equipment to the Soldier. As part of the celebration, former PEOs were on hand including BG (Ret) James R. Moran, MG Peter N. Fuller, and MG Camille M. Nichols as well as the newly appointed PEO BG Paul A. Ostrowski. Unfortunately, MG R. Mark Brown was unable to attend due to his current deployment, but sent his warmest wishes via a video presentation. Friday also marked the PEO Soldier change of charter between MG Nichols and BG Ostrowski.

They also took this opportunity to unveil their new logo (seen above), designed by MAJ Joel Dillo. In an Army press release, MAJ Dillon commented, “I wanted to represent the Soldier of course, because that’s what PEO Soldier is all about. The logo itself includes the silhouettes of three Soldiers on patrol, backed by an American flag. I also wanted to make sure the name Program Executive Office Soldier was bold and visible. I just wanted to make sure it was something that was easily recognizable and clearly focused on Soldiers, because that’s what we focus on; an enduring type of legacy.”

Photo – US Army

US Army Introduces 1 Inch Helmet Pads

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

Many troops have had issues with the fit of the Advanced Combat Helmet. The idea is to go up a size when in doubt rather than use a smaller helmet which will fit closer to the head and place the wearer in danger of blunt force trauma and associated Traumatic Brain Injury. When Soldiers wear larger helmets it can feel “loose” when using issue 3/4 inch pads. To help combat this issue, the Army has introduced one inch thick pads.

PEO Soldier recently noted in an announcement regarding the new pads that there are a couple of ways to tell if your helmet isn’t fitting properly. Consider, if your helmet rocks back and forth and is not stable, if the helmet is too low on brow or if the helmet is not compatible with eyewear. These are all good indicators.

They suggest substituting pairs of one inch oblong/oval pads or individual trapezoidal front and/or rear pads or to even try another helmet to alleviate discomfort. If you decide to move to the new pads, PEO Soldier is very specific about how you must proceed.

It is important to note the oblong/oval pads must be replaced in pairs to maintain stability, and the trapezoidal front and/or rear pad may be replaced individually. Safety considerations require the crown pad to be available in one size only, the three-quarter-inch size, to ensure the helmet does not ride too high the head.

These changes are currently being incorporated in TM 10-8470-204-10 Technical Manual Operator’s Manual for Advanced Combat Helmet (ACH).

Pads are ordered in pairs and PEO Soldier provided these NSNs for your use. Pads should also be available through your CIF.

NSN, Item & Size
8470-01-547-2802, Pad Oblong/Oval, 8

8470-01-547-2795, Pad Trapezoidal, 8

*Pad sizes are in eighths of an inch. The 8 equals one inch.