Tuesday 28th February
09:00 Chairman’s Opening Remarks
Lt Col (Retd) Andrew Tate, Former Ground Indirect Fires Officer, United States Marine Corps.
Lt Col Tate was a career Artillery Officer in the United States Marine Corps with extensive experience of Indirect and Joint Fires. During his staff appointments Lt Col Tate worked closely with the US Army and the US Air Force on Joint Fires issues to ensure interoperability and reduce the duplication of effort. Lt Col Tate has also worked Joint Fires issues with Joint and Coalition partners via the Joint Fire Support Executive Steering Committee. As a result of this experience Lt Col Tate is ideally qualified to Chair the conference and lead discussion.
09:10 – The UK Fires Programme to 2030+
Brigadier Simon Humphrey, Head of Combat Support Capability, British Army HQ,
Brigadier John Mead, Commander 1st Artillery Brigade.
Future challenges & UK Context
Implications of key changes in policy: Strike brigades and the warfighting division.
Future Capability Projects
Training & challenges.
09:50 – Industry keynote
10:30 - Coffee
11:00 – US Army’s Future Fires Transformation
Colonel Edward O’Neil, Director, Capability Development & Integration Directorate, Fires Center of Excellence, FT Sill, OK
Fires Emerging Concepts - Leveraging JIM Fires Capability, Multifunctional Fires Convergence, Enhanced Sensor-to Shooter Linkages, & Cross Domain Fires Expansion
Multi-Domain Fires Organizations: Strategic Fires Command, Operational Fires Command, BCT Fires Battalion
Cross Domain Fires in Support of Multi-Domain Battle
12:00 – Microflown AVISA’s mobile sound ranging system
Alex Koers MSc MBA, cofounder and director, Microflown AVISA HQ, Arnhem, the Netherlands
Acoustic vector sensors allowing low SWaP mobile sensor nodes
Recent test results from several artillery ranges
Incremental value of bringing sensors forward
Integration in Battle Field Management systems
Drone based sensor nodes
Need for further testing opportunities
12:30 – Lunch
14:00 – US Army Towed Artillery Programs
Mr Keith Gooding, Project Manager & Mr Gabriel Jarani, Chief Engineer, Program Manager, Towed Artillery Systems, US Army
Structure and organisation of PM TAS
Tasks and mission
Description of programs (Domestic and FMS)
Development initiatives for both M777 and M119Excalibur – Tube Launched Precision Guided 155m Artillery Munition
14:30 – Overview of the US Army's Tube Launched Precision Guided Munition Programs
Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Gibbs, Product Manager, Guided Precision Munitions and Mortar Systems, PM CAS, US Army
The presentation will discuss current US Army Tube-Launched Precision Programs to include:
Excalibur (Precision Guided Extended Range Projectile)
Precision Guidance Kit (Course Correcting Fuze for Conventional Artillery Projectiles)
Precision Mortar Programs to include the Accelerated Precision Mortar Initiative (APMI) and High Explosive Guided Mortar (HEGM)
The Five Phase Qualification Process for Precision MunitionsPrecision Guidance Kit (PGK) Course Correcting Fuze
15:00 – Weapon Locating Radars in a Cross Domain Fires concept
Bård Frostad, Senior Military Advisor WLR, Saab Surveillance
basic WLR requirements
WLR training in a manoeuvre environment
15:30 – Tea/Coffee
16:00 – UK Capability Development Projects
Col Mark Pullen, Assistant Head, Joint Effect Develop, Capability Development Combat Support
Lt Col Eamonn Welch, SO1 Offensive Support Plans, Capability Development Combat Support
The presentation will discuss near term capability requirements such as:
Dismounted Joint Fires Integrator (D-JFI)
Joint Fires Simulation Training (JFST)
Mounted Joint Fires Integrator (MJFI)
Tactical Guided Munition Indirect (TGMI)
Land Precision Strike (LPS)
Longer term capability requirements will be briefly covered including:
Medium weight 155mm for the Strike Brigades
Replacement locating radar
Replacement ground surveillance radar
16:45 – Panel Discussion – The Evolving Threat Environment
Coalition nations enjoyed a technological superiority over adversaries during the Global War on Terror, but this will not be so in future conflicts with near peer competitors. These near peer competitors will possess the same advanced technology as western nations to include advanced anti-access / aerial denial (A2AD) technologies that will seek to prevent freedom of action and endanger deployed forces. Additionally, current and emerging threat fires systems can range 20-90 km. Combined with increasingly responsive target acquisition capabilities this will enable near peer competitors to rapidly and effectively concentrate surface fires, often beyond the range of friendly surface fires. The improvements to competitor target acquisition capabilities, integration with hybrid sensors (UAS, social media, non-traditional), Electronic Warfare (GPS/Bandwidth denial), Direction Finding, and without any restrictions regarding the use of dud producing cluster munitions will make their fires more effective and deadly. Moreover, near peer competitors currently employ an expertise in electronic attack, to include GPS denial, spoofing, and the ability to provide precision and near precision fires while simultaneously denying GPS dependent forces a precision fires capability. This problem is further magnified by the potential of a greater threat to the Air Combat Element. For the first time since the Cold War western forces might be challenged to fight in an air contested environment, which will potentially reduce the number of air platforms available for prosecution of targets, thus increasing the number of targets to be prosecuted by surface fires.
17:30 – Conference Adjourns for Networking Drinks at the venue
All conference sessions are subject to change
Future Indirect Fires will examine the likely development of Joint Lethal & Non Lethal Indirect Fires in the international arena during the next decade. In a future conflict achieving the greatest possible effect from the fewest possible assets at the lowest possible cost will be a high priority. Efficient and effective integration of Joint and Coalition fires offers an opportunity to achieve greatest effect. During the course of the recent operation in Afghanistan many important Joint Fires lessons were learnt and implemented by the participating nations. It remains unclear how many of these capabilities will be retained within core competencies in the different nations with implications for future coalition capabilities.
Wednesday 1st March
09:00 – Marine Corps Indirect Fire: Current & Future
Col Tim Parker, Commanding Officer, United States Marine Corps Detachment, Ft Sill
The presentation will discuss the emerging threat environment, based on a near peer competitor, that could be faced by a Marine Air Ground Task Force in the future. The presentation will then go on to describe the fires platforms, C2 systems, electronic warfare assets, ammunition and other capability developments that the United States Marine Corps will most likely have to make in order to retain a competitive edge.
09:45 – Common Indirect Fire Systems: Future Capability Development of the German Army
Colonel Manfred Felber, Head of Section, Joint Fire Support/Indirect Fire, Army Concepts and Capabilities Development Center, German Army
For the German Army Artillery to be competitive in the Future the Artillery must become proficient on the capabilities: effects, reconnaisance and command & control.
A three-part complementary system will be required with distinct and graded subsystem capabilities (Missile, Airmobile direct-support gun system, 155mm artillery system)
10:30 – Coffee
11:00 – Industry
11:30 – Modernizing the Royal Canadian Artillery (RCA) for a Joint Operating Environment
Col Marc La Fortune, Director of Artillery, Royal Canadian Artillery
Overview of The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery:
- RCA Vision / Mission
- RCA Units within the Canadian Army
- RCA Order of Battle
Current RCA Initiatives: Near Term & Longer term
- Artillery Digitalization
- Airspace Coordination Center Modernization
- New Surveillance and Target Acquisition Capabilities
12:00 – French Army Artillery
Major Francis Denisart, Staff officer, Office of Specialised Studies, School of Artillery, French Army
New French Army and Arty organizations
French ARTY 2020 structures,
Integration in ‘Scorpion’ framework,
Surveillance and acquisition Bty (ISTAR),
French Arty main equipment
Others like meteorological assets.
French ARTY preoccupations due to late operations: French ARTY projections and lessons learned about Ukraine.
Main past operations (25 past years),
Current OPS (Mali, Irak),
Lessons learned regarding other operations.
French ARTY in the future
Focus on the choices, current projects (precision munitions).
Chosen solutions between:
Short range/long range,
Common indirect fire support: rocket launcher and gun
Precision 155 mm and 120mm munitions
12:30 - Lunch
14:00 – Panel Discussion – Capability Development Trends
Developing the day one panel regarding the threat environment the panel will discuss capability development required to operate and win in a future conflict. Future fires organisations must have responsive, accurate, lethal, survivable and sustainable fires capable of supporting the commanders' scheme of maneuver or planned defence. Future weapons platforms must be able to rapidly emplace and displace and provide a high rate of fire in order to defeat enemy counterfire capabilities and maintain the ability to support the ground combat element. Likewise, surface to surface fires units must have comparable mobility to the supported maneuver force, in order to maintain operational tempo. Accuracy will be critical to this equation. Future surface to surface platforms must be able to rapidly and accurately engage targets of varying types and sizes with precision, near precision, and area effects munitions. Moreover, they must be able to maintain this accuracy (precision or near precision) in a GPS or technology denied environment. Enhanced accuracy will be critical to ensuring logistics demand reduction (ammunition), especially in an austere, expeditionary environment. Future surface to surface fires units must also be able to win the EW battle by denying the enemy the ability to accurately locate firing units by reducing their electronic signatures or having the ability to remotely "spoof" the digital signature to a location outside of enemy indirect fire capability. Future platforms must be capable of firing advanced munitions that provide significantly greater effects than current munitions while still providing area fires for inaccurately located and moving targets. Most importantly indirect fires systems, their associated C2 and ISTAR assets and the training & doctrine that underpins them must be interoperable with coalition allies.
14:50 –Italian Army: Role of the Field Artillery
Colonel Tommaso Capasso, Branch Head HD Staff - Doctrine, Studies & Lessons Learned, Italian Army Artillery HQ
15:30 – Tea/Coffee
16:00 – The Development of Finnish Army Indirect Fire Capabilities
Lt Col Mika Tauru, Deputy Inspector of Artillery, Army Command, Finland
National Army and Fire Support structures and capabilities
Joint Fires implementation
Training System and Challenges
Future development of Fire Support capabilities
16:45 – Chairmans wash up
17:00 – Conference Closes