News 1998 Army Science and Technology Master Plan



M. Engineer and Mine Warfare

Have you ever been in a minefield? ... All there has to be is one mine and that’s intense.

General H. Norman Schwarzkopf, USA (Ret.)

1. Introduction

The U.S. Army is facing a changing threat with varied degrees of sophistication as it enters the 21st century. Given this uncertain threat, the engineer and mine warfare (EMW) mission area continues to play a key role as a critical member of the combined arms team. Recent military operations have demonstrated the critical need for a robust EMW mission area, which is vital to the combined arms team and combat service support elements being able to fulfill their future military role.

The EMW mission area consists of the five major battlefield functions of mobility, countermobility, survivability, sustainment engineering, and topographic engineering. Each function is critical to conducting successful operations throughout the operational continuum, whether fighting a major regional conflict or providing military assistance in operations other than war. Applying technological advancements to modernize these functions enhances the combined arms commander’s ability to conduct opposed entry, sustained land combat, and OOTW to achieve a decisive victory. This section focuses on funded EMW S&T programs that provide systems and system upgrades in support of combat maneuver modernization. Only systems and system upgrades identified in the Combat Maneuver annex to the AMP, of which EMW is a part, and advanced concepts with planned 6.3 technology demonstrations of potential future systems are addressed in this section.

2. Relationship to Operational Capabilities

Table III–29 shows the relationship between the EMW S/SUs and each of the TRADOC battlefield dynamics. It also details some of the operational capabilities provided by these S/SUs.

3. Modernization Strategy

The Combat Maneuver annex to the AMP provides the blueprint for equipping engineer forces into the next century. It embraces the Army’s modernization vision—land force dominance—by contributing to the five Army modernization objectives.

Project and Sustain. The assessment and construction or reconstruction of ports, airfields, roads, and other infrastructure to project forces rapidly and consistently and maintain logistical forces.

Protect the Force. Construction of structures to protect critical C2, weapon systems, and logistics nodes by camouflage, concealment, or bunkerage.

Win the Information War. Provide engineer–related force level information, standard hard copy and digital maps, map substitute imagery, battlefield visualization products, and other types of terrain data, giving commanders a realistic view of the battlefield. Information and products must be readily available, rapidly updated, and quickly manipulated or tailored. Real–time electronic distribution to all elements of the force will increase leader battlefield awareness and allow commanders to operate inside their opponent’s decision cycle.

Conduct Precision Strike. Utilization of accurate electronic terrain data for display and tactical exploitation to obtain precise location data of both the target and the shooter. Engineer assessment of conventional weapons effects against hard structural targets will ensure correct munition–to–target linkage. This will lead to improved effectiveness and precision of weapon system fires and total dominance of the deep battle.

Dominate the Maneuver Battle. Enhancing the tactical mobility of friendly maneuver forces and impeding the mobility of threat forces to provide commanders both protection and maneuverability necessary to dominate battlespace.

Table III–29.  EMW System Capabilities

System/
System Upgrade/
Advanced Concept
Function

Patterns of Operation

System/
System Upgrade
Capability

Advanced Concept
Capability

  Project the Force Protect the Force Gain Information Dominance Decisive Operations Shape the Battlespace Sustain the Force    
MOBILITY             Advanced image processing

Real–time data transfer

Detection for heavy and light forces

Multisensors

Robust sensor fusion

Advanced antitank

Computer fire control

Combined detection and neutralization capability

Teleoperation capability

Unexploded ordnance detection

Rapid breaching and mine unexploded ordnance (UXO) clearance

Lightweight airborne standoff detection capability

Advanced staring FPAs

Advanced sensors (multihyperspectral, passive, polarization)

Advanced electronic stabilization advanced ATR

Advanced biological explosives detection

Advanced time domain EM induction

Ultra wideband holographic radar

System            
Ground Standoff Mine Detection System  

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Mine Hunter/Killer  

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Lightweight Airborne Multispectral Countermine Detection System





 

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Advanced Concept               Advanced tracking

Advanced handoff to radar to determine range, trajectory, and location

Advanced signal processing and ATR algorithms

Standoff Scatterable Mine and Munition Detection  

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Advanced Mine Detection Sensor System  

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SURVIVABILITY             Improved visual, IR, and radar signature suppression

Low–cost mobile signature suppression

Improved chemical agent resistant coating

IR suppressive coating

Integrated active/passive signature control in UV, visible IR, and RF bands

Tunable countermeasures

 
System Upgrade            
Low–Cost, Low–Observable Technologies  

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TOPOGRAPHIC ENGINEERING             Rapid map or map substitute products

Battlefield environment effects

Real–time creation, update, and dissemination of digital topographic databases

Integrated decision aids

 
System Upgrade            
Digital Topographic Support System/Quick–Response Multicolor Printer

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The EMW modernization strategy relies on continuous modernization as a key concept. The acquisition approach emphasizes investment in S&T programs leading to ATDs, targets of opportunity, battle laboratory experiments, AWEs, and the Joint CM ACTD. Technological advances will be incorporated more often into systems via upgrades versus entirely new systems.

Of the EMW battlefield mission areas, mobility and survivability are currently receiving a new focus in S&T due to the ever–increasing mine threat. Effective and responsible mine warfare obstructs the mobility and survivability of opposing forces and creates conditions favorable to the mine employer without inflicting needless casualties on noncombatants. Mine warfare constitutes a significant element in armed conflict at all levels of intensity and is critical to early entry forces who may be overmatched. The intelligent minefield (IMF) ATD will enhance the antiarmor lethality of the early entry force, cue fires beyond line–of–sight, and provide the potential to revolutionize maneuver. IMF can not only be turned off to provide one–way obstacles, but should be able to augment friendly maneuver forces by performing screen and guard missions autonomously. Mines are cheap, lethal, psychologically disruptive, and readily available, and they will be encountered on all future battlefields. The result is that relatively cheap mines employed quickly and in quantity can immobilize a powerful force.

Inexpensive, land mines can destroy multimillion dollar weapon systems. The future outlook is even more ominous, with the evolution of new smart mines. Microelectronics will soon take mines to new levels of lethality. The countermine shortfall is particularly worrisome because it strikes at the heart of Army’s doctrine of rapid movement and surprise to win quick decisive victories.

4. Engineer and Mine Warfare Roadmaps

Table III–30 presents a summary of the S/SU/ACs, TDs, ATDs, and ACTDs found on the EMW roadmap shown in Figure III–19.

Figure III-19. Roadmap - Engineer and Mine Warfare
Figure III-19. Roadmap - Engineer and Mine Warfare
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Engineers enhance friendly freedom of maneuver by detecting, bypassing, breaching, marking, and reporting mines and other obstacles, crossing gaps, providing combat roads and trails, and performing forward aviation combat engineering (FACE) operations. S&T programs focus on integrating countermine capabilities through live and simulated experiments, maintaining Army and Marine Corps enhanced mobility, survivability, situational awareness, and agility to the force commander as a result of integrating countermine technology with C4I. The technologies include sensors, IR, microwave, multispectral, seismic and acoustic decoys, explosive neutralization, information processing, robotics, and other emerging technologies.

Joint Countermine (CM) ACTD (1995–00). This ACTD will demonstrate a seamless amphibious and land warfare countermine operational capability from sea to land by coordinating Army, Navy, and Marine Corps technology demonstrators, prototypes, and fielded military equipment.

Demonstration I, successfully executed in 4QFY97, focused on near–shore capabilities of assault, reconnaissance, breaching, and clearing with emphasis on in–stride detection and neutralization of mines and obstacles. The Army was the lead for Demonstration I. It included joint Army–Marine Corps technology demonstrations in mine detection technology for the Army’s future close–in man–portable mine detector, with the capability to detect both metallic and nonmetallic mines (handheld standoff mine detection system). It also included countermeasures to side–attack mines (off–route smart mine clearance) in support of road–clearing operations. These technologies are applicable to other military uses such as unexploded ordnance and range clearing, duds on the battlefield, and demining.

Table III–30.  EMW Demonstration and System Summary

Advanced Technology Demonstration

Technology Demonstration

Vehicular–Mounted Mine Detector

Mine Hunter–Killer

Mobility

Mobility and Survivability (Battle Command)
Lightweight, Airborne Multispectral Countermine Detection System

Survivability

Low–Cost, Low–Observable Technologies

Advanced Concept
Technology Demonstration

 
Joint Countermine
Rapid Terrain Visualization

(For additional information, see Volume II, Annex B)

 

System/System Upgrade/Advanced Concept

System/System Upgrade

Ground Standoff Mine Detection System
Mine Hunter/Killer
Lightweight Airborne Multispectral Countermine Detection System
Digital Topographic Support System/Quick–Response Multicolor Printer
Maneuver Control System

Advanced Concept

Low–Cost, Low–Observable Technologies
Advanced Mine Detection Sensors
Standoff Scatterable Mine and Munitions Detection

Demonstration II, planned for 3QFY98, will emphasize technologies of clandestine surveillance and reconnaissance as described in the FY94 Navy Mine Warfare Plan and will demonstrate the elements of seamless transition of countermine operations from sea to land. The Navy is lead for Demonstration II.

Mobility and Survivability (Battle Command) TD (1995–98). This program will demonstrate decision support applications for mobility, countermobility, and survivability force level information that supports multiple battlefield operating systems. Physics–based algorithms, applicable to all climatic regions, that automate the engineer’s efforts to filter, assess, and manipulate data into relevant information for the maneuver commander and staff will be incorporated into obstacle planning software and simplified survivability assessments that will be demonstrated during Task Force XXI AWE and Division XXI exercises. The software suite to be demonstrated will also provide the engineer commander with the ability to execute engineer domain force level command and control. Supports: Battle Command Decision Support System (BCDSS) (Phoenix) and Maneuver Control System (MCS).

Vehicular–Mounted Mine Detector (VMMD) ATD (1996–98). The vehicular detector will demonstrate the mounted capability to detect metallic and nonmetallic mines, conventionally or remotely emplaced. The primary operational mode of the VMMD is to detect mines on roads and routes across full vehicular widths so that lines of transportation are kept open. There is no currently fielded vehicular mounted system that can detect both metallic and nonmetallic mines. The ATD will demonstrate in FY98 a system using multiple sensor suites, sensor fusion, and ATR techniques. Sensor fusion will provide for a higher mine detection rate while keeping false alarm rates at an acceptable level. The sensors that will be demonstrated include IR, ground–penetrating radar (GPR), and EM induction detectors. The IR sensors include both 3 to 5–m and 8 to 12–m wavelength sensors. These will be currently available sensors with specially developed ATR algorithms. The primary purpose of the IR sensor is to provide a standoff cueing detection capability. The GPR operates in the 13–GHz band that represents a tradeoff between the lower frequencies required for sufficient ground penetration and the higher frequencies needed to achieve spatial resolution for specific targets. Various algorithms are being investigated for use with the GPR approach. The EM induction detection combines traditional metallic mine detection operating features with an innovative concept that combines the induction coils with the GPR antennas in a single search head. Supports: Joint Countermine ACTD and Ground Standoff Mine Detection System.

Mine Hunter/Killer (MH/K) ATD (1998–00). The MH/K program will allow the Army to investigate and clear routes and roads through terrain where conventional countermine tools are not desirable and do so at near tactical speeds. The purpose of the MH/K program is to develop an integrated standoff mine detection and neutralization system for installation on any tactical vehicle. The system is intended to neutralize surface laid and buried, metallic and nonmetallic, AT and large AP mines. The MH/K system will consist of a multimode sensor array including forward–looking radar, and FLIR systems with a robust sensor fusion architecture and advanced ATR algorithm suite, a target designation system, a set antimine weapon with computer fire control and articulation, and a stabilized tele–operations kit. The system will detect and destroy mines and unexploded ordnance in a wide path in front of the vehicle at moderate speeds without needing to pause or stop. Supports: MH/K and Ground Standoff Mine Detection System P3I.

Lightweight Airborne Multispectral Countermine Detection System TD (1998–01). This demonstration will utilize novel focal plane array (FPA) and system technologies (3 to 5 m staring FPAs, passive polarization, multi–hyperspectral imaging, electronic stabilization) to develop a lightweight airborne standoff mine detection capability for limited area (point) detection, limited corridor route reconnaissance, and detection of nuisance mines along roads. The system will detect buried nuisance mines on unpaved roads and off–route side attack mines, as well as detect surface and buried patterned and scatterable minefields. The system will also have applications to other intelligence–gathering programs requiring increased thermal sensitivity as well as those that would benefit from a wider field of view than supported by a framing FLIR. Supports: Tactical UAV.

a. Countermobility

Engineers impede the enemy’s freedom of maneuver by disrupting, turning, fixing, or blocking his movement through obstacle development and terrain enhancement. S&T programs are integrating microelectronics, signal processing, and advanced intelligence into a controlled network of mine warfare systems. The Intelligent Minefield S&T program ended in FY97, but continues to support technology developments through participation in the Rapid Force Projection ACTD. To use this future capability and other engineer assets optimally requires the development of software to assist in evaluating the whole picture (environment, intelligence data, assets, capabilities, etc.) to facilitate planning and execution of maneuver operations.

Area Denial Systems TD (1998–01). This program will demonstrate the capability of self–contained, semiautonomous, long–standoff munitions that can defend an area by defeating, disrupting, and delaying vehicles that enter into its battlespace. This system will enhance other weapon systems in a manner similar to that achieved by land mines today, but without the postwar civilian mine threat and the demining problem. Support: Unmanned Terrain Domination.

b. Survivability

Engineers reduce friendly force vulnerability to enemy weapon effects through rapid fabrication of protective structures, terrain alteration, and concealment. S&T programs are focused on upgrades to the low–cost, low–observable (LCLO) camouflage systems. These systems provide means for detection and hit avoidance. The upgrades are designed to reduce or eliminate visual, UV, near IR, thermal IR, and radar waveband signatures of mobile and stationary assets. The goal is to counter the highly sensitive reconnaissance, intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition (RISTA) threat sensors, and fused sensors in all parts of the EM spectrum. Signature control will be achieved through integration of passive, reactive, and active low–observable systems.

Field fortifications research is conducted by the Corps of Engineers Waterways Experiment Station (WES) for all of DoD. The focus of these efforts is in design of protective structures to defeat advanced munitions (bunker busters) and unconventional munitions (car bombs), to capture commercial technology, and to identify high–payoff protection techniques.

Low–Cost, Low–Observable (LCLO) System Upgrade TD (1994–06). Demonstrations are scheduled during FY94–00 for upgrades to LCLO systems, including the multispectral camouflage system for mobile equipment, the ultra–lightweight camouflage net system—general–purpose (ULCANS–GP), and the reactive/active standardized camouflage paint pattern (SCAPP). Currently fielded LCLO systems do not counter threat thermal IR sensors. Supports: ULCANS–GP, Multispectral Camouflage System for Mobile Equipment, and SCAPP.

c. Sustainment Engineering

Engineers support force sustainment by maintaining, upgrading, or constructing lines of communication and facilities; providing construction support and materials; and performing area damage assessment. Sustainment in the form of infrastructure assessment, generation and allocation of engineer resources required, and visualization technologies will be among the technologies critical in wartime contingency and support and sustainment operations.

d. Topographic Engineering

Topographic engineers provide timely, accurate knowledge of the battlefield and terrain visualization to operational commanders and staffs at all echelons throughout the operational continuum. Knowledge of the battlefield consists of information in narrative or graphic format describing the effects of terrain and climate on military operations. The ability of the commander to visualize the terrain in all climate conditions before the battle will help him to develop dynamic operational plans, as well as to locate, engage, and defeat the enemy with a more agile, synchronized force. Terrain information developed by Army engineers provide the basic terrain reference for land and air forces as well as other DoD and non–DoD agencies.

S&T programs focus on providing terrain database construction or update real–time positioning and navigation determination, realistic physics–based terrain capabilities, geospatial database management, database value–adding for modeling and simulation, and tactical terrain and environment decision aid support. Key to battlefield awareness and crisis response is the development of technologies to support the capability for the rapid production and dissemination of image–based topographic products. Advances in microelectronics, knowledge–based systems, and signal processing techniques make the topographic engineering sciences an extremely dynamic field.

Topographic engineers are working closely with TRADOC battle labs and the user community to demonstrate, evaluate, and refine technological developments and doctrinal topographic support concepts. The digital topographic support system—multispectral imagery systems (DTSS–MSIP) currently fielded to all active duty topographic units provides automated topographic support and imagery exploitation capabilities to the commander. The DTSS/Quick Response Multicolor Printer (QRMP), to begin fielding in FY98, will provide a tactical capability to support the commander further with the latest in topographic technology. The P3I program will provide periodic increases in functionality, maintaining topographic support at the technological leading edge in capability and in data imagery exploitation.

Rapid Terrain Visualization (RTV) ACTD (1997–01). The RTV ACTD will demonstrate the capabilities required to provide the warfighter level V elevation data, feature data, and imagery over a 90 90 km area in 72 hours. The focus of the RTV ACTD will be on source collection, data generation, and transformation of digital topographic data. These data are the essential foundation for battlefield visualization. Situation databases, integrated on current terrain databases, provide the commander a dynamic, 3D visualization of his battlespace and enhance his mission planning, course of action analysis, and mission rehearsal capabilities. The ACTD will leverage technologies being developed by government and industry. These technologies will be integrated in the JPSD Integration and Evaluation Center (IEC) and analyzed to determine their effectiveness. The ACTD has provided a testbed capability to the XVIII Airborne Corps to ensure continual feedback on the military value of capabilities. Selected capabilities, whose maturity has been demonstrated in the IEC, will be transitioned to the user testbed for evaluation. An objective capability will be delivered to the using unit as leave behind in the year 2000. Supports: XVIII Airborne Corps Warfighter Exercises, Force XXI, and Division ’98 AWE.

5. Relationship to Army Modernization Plan Annexes

The EMW modernization strategy and related S&T programs are linked with modernization plans in other mission areas. Table III–31 shows the linkage between EMW S/SUs and other AMP annexes.

Table III–31.  Correlation Between EMW S/SU/ACs and Other AMP Annexes

System/System Upgrade/Advanced Concept

Modernization Plan Annexes

  Mounted Forces* Close Combat Light* Space & Missile Defense IEW Soldier Systems C4 Aviation Fire Support
System Maneuver Control System

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  Ground Standoff Mine Detection

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  Mine Hunter/Killer

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System
Upgrade
Lightweight Airborne Multispectral Countermine Detection System

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  Low–Cost Low–Observable Technologies

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Advanced
Concept
Advanced Mine Detection Sensors

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  Standoff Scatterable Mine and Munition Detection

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* See Combat Maneuver Annex.
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