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NEWS | Sept. 7, 2021

303rd Maneuver Enhancement Brigade utilize VSAT to perform daily duties while in field

By Spc. Mason Runyon 9th Mission Support Command

Soldiers from the 303rd Maneuver Enhancement Brigade (MEB) personnel (S1) and logistics (S4) offices perform their daily tasks during their FY21 Annual Training, on August 13 2021, at Schofield Barracks, in Honolulu. They accomplish these daily duties by accessing online web applications using the Tactical Enterprise Logistics Systems (TELS) through the Sustainment Information System (SIS) Tactical Network using the Combat Service Support (CSS) Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT).

The 303rd MEB is a brigade that can operate independently as an element with one of its many capabilities being able to effectively and efficiently, respond to disasters in or during multi-domain operations. It is also the only S1 department in the entirety of the 9th Mission Support Command that accesses their web application tools via VSAT. Using this VSAT network, they were able to ensure the sustainment and personnel information could be communicated efficiently, allowing for them to maintain that same efficiency and effectiveness.

"Once VSAT network is established, S1 and S4 personnel can utilize the network to send out or receive critical updates such (as) the personnel status report (PERSTATS) and logistics status (LOGSTAT) from any location," said U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 Pin Yao Chen, "Maintaining running numbers enable the leadership to project combat power of available personnel and various classes of supply."

Chen verified the validation of equipment in Multiple Deployment Facility (MDF) is pushed through the Transportation Coordinators Automated Information for Movement System (TC-AIMS), which is the tool used to execute equipment movements to the area or responsibility (AOR).

"While soldiers are wargaming their mission, I ensure meals are available during the exercise, vans or busses are dispatched to transport troops to designated locations, and set up mobile sanitation stations when latrine support became limited (at the) last minute," Chen shared.

Of course it isn't a system or technology that isn't without its fair share of hiccups or obstacles. Initially the VSAT was set up as a means for the S1/S4 to maintain connectivity, but they discovered that the configuration changes over the last two years were changed and they no longer had the Army Pacific (AP) and Army Reserve (AR) connectivity but only Global Command Support System (GCSS Army logistics).

"I feel we need to pursue the idea of us having this system and being able to use it with AP/AR and GCSS Army," said U.S. Army Reserve Maj. Stephen Stansel, "We need to address the shortages on a modification table of organization and equipment (MTOE) and the untrained capabilities of the system along with the limits the AP and AR net have been pushed down from U.S. Army Pacific Command."

The ability for the 303rd to make this work is a great showcase of the teamwork and the togetherness that makes the Army great. Efforts from soldiers like U.S. Army Reserve Master Sgt. Lourdes Lucatero or civilian personnel like Celetino Ranon Jr., a logistics personnel to the Sustainment Automation Support and Management Office (SASMO), who helped make this sort of action possible for the soldiers in the field.

"Mr. Ranon took the time out from his schedule to help us get properly set up and train us on some other capabilities that we need to start working on with the LOS antennas and VSAT," Stansel added.

Ranon was able to help support the 303rd MEB soldiers mission by checking to ensure that the VSAT was set up properly, as well conducting a field refresher course on how VSAT and Combat Service Support Automated Information System Interface (CSSAISI) are set up and their capabilities.

"His support is vital to our operation when the system is having trouble," Chen shared.