Soldier and SUGV controller
The FCS gear being tested by the 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 5th Brigade (Army Evaluation Task Force), 1st Armored Division is part of what's known as Spin Out 1. Where the original plans for Future Combat Systems called for all the pieces--14 integrated weapon systems (down from 18), along with the data network--to be delivered together sometime well into the next decade, the Army is now working to get some of the technologies out to soldiers piece by piece. Partly that's because of the need to support actual combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan now, and not at some war-gaming future date. Partly, too, the Army faces budget pressures that could undermine key parts of the very expensive project ($3.5 billion for the current fiscal year; $160 billion when all is said and done).
September 5, 2008 1:39 PM PDT
Photo by: Stephen Baack
| Caption by: Jonathan Skillings
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