THAAD unit faces challenges head-on
Capt. Tamara Gonzales
11th ADA Bde. Public Affairs
MCGREGOR RANGE, N.M. – A new unit with new missions, establishing a battle rhythm and new standard operating procedures: These are the challenges faced by Soldiers assigned to A Battery, 4th Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense, as they conducted Table VII certifications.
The training was yet another of the unit’s firsts in preparation for their external evaluations, scheduled for April. The unit started training March 4 and will continue their Table VII training until all crews are certified.
“We are the first ones to develop standard operating procedures for this mission,” said 1st Lt. Jason Broughton.
The reconnaissance, selection and occupation of position team conducted reconnaissance of a potential site. This was done in order to determine the nuclear, biological, chemical and radiological status of the area and to ensure the area was clear of dangers such as land mines. Once the area was cleared, RSOP decided the best locations for the launcher, radar and the THAAD fire control communications center.
“The most critical part of the mission is that of the RSOP team, because if the equipment is not laid out correctly the battle plan will not be as efficient,” said Broughton.
RSOP then marked off the area for each element of the THAAD system’s location, called back to the unit’s base location, and informed them of the equipment layout plan. This acted as the “starting gun” for everyone at the base location to start packing up equipment and conducting briefs for movement, said 1st Lt. Ben Mayhew, fire control platoon leader.
When the unit reached its destination, RSOP team members guided platoon leaders in where to emplace their equipment. The platoon leaders then directed their elements to the appropriate location. Once emplaced, the unit conducted systems validation.
“Once the sensors and launchers are set up, we assume the desired alert state, issue the execution order and the unit is off to its next mission,” said Mayhew.