Army releases fielding requirements for M-SHORAD battalions

By Ethan Sterenfeld / May 25, 2021 at 12:22 PM

Each battalion of the Maneuver Short-Range Air Defense will include 40 M-SHORAD vehicles, along with roughly 270 additional ground vehicles and trailers, according to a programmatic environmental assessment for M-SHORAD fielding.

The additional vehicles will include 20 infantry carrier and medical evaluation Strykers, 100 Joint Light Tactical Vehicles, 75 support vehicles and 75 trailers, according to the assessment, which was announced May 19 in the Federal Register.

The assessment rated the suitability of six Army installations where the M-SHORAD battalions could be stationed: Ft. Bliss, TX, Ft. Hood, TX, Ft. Riley, KS, Ft. Stewart, GA, Ft. Carson, CO, and Ft. Sill, OK. Battalions could be fielded at up to three of those installations.

The M-SHORAD is the Army's new short-range air and missile defense system, which mounts air defense systems on a Stryker combat vehicle. The Army fielded the first four M-SHORADs to an air defense battalion in Europe last month.

Each battalion will include 550 soldiers, according to the assessment. The Army plans to field four battalions of the M-SHORAD.

MaxxPro mine-resistant, ambush protected vehicles, which the Army purchased for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, could be used in the M-SHORAD battalions in place of the 20 infantry carrier and medical evaluation Stryker vehicles, the assessment stated. Humvees could be used in place of JLTVs "depending on procurement timelines and priorities."

An installation should have an armored or Stryker brigade combat team present to enhance the training opportunities for the M-SHORAD battalion, according to the assessment. The M-SHORAD is intended to provide air and missile defense for maneuver forces.

Training will also require installations to have protected airspace, to a minimum of 25,000-30,000 feet above ground level, according to the assessment. Live fire training will include Stinger and Longbow Hellfire missiles shooting down unmanned aerial vehicles.

Each battalion will require approximately 19.6 acres worth of dedicated facilities, including headquarters, maintenance facilities, parking, housing and dining, according to the assessment.

Comments are due June 18 for the programmatic environmental assessment and the draft finding of no significant impact and finding of no practicable alternative that the Army released at the same time. A separate environmental assessment is being performed for Joint Base Lewis McChord, WA.