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Fire Support

 

U.S. Army Operational Test Command
1655 Randolph Road, ATTN:  TEOT-FS
Fort Sill, Oklahoma  73503-0530

Mission

The Fire Support Test Directorate (FSTD) plans, conducts, and reports on independent operational tests, assessments, experiments, and rapid initiatives of Field Artillery systems in order to provide essential information for the decision-making process for acquisition and fielding.

 

Who We Are

Testing since 1902, we are the longest standing test directorate within OTC. Our directorate consists of the Artillery Test Division, Test Support Division, and Support Division.
 

What We Do

Team with Army evaluators, developmental testers, and materiel, combat, and training developers to address test and evaluation requirements of fire support and field artillery systems.

Design and conduct operational tests.

Assess rapid acquisition initiatives.

Provide data collectors to serve on Forward Operational Assessment (FOA) teams.

Develop and maintain fire support instrumentation.

Represent OTC at the Fires Center of Excellence.
 

 

History

On 25 June 1902, the United States Army Field Artillery Board was formally constituted at Fort Riley, Kansas, and charged with the mission of providing recommendations for improving field artillery equipment. In 1913, the Field Artillery Board moved to Fort Sill, Oklahoma.  At Fort Sill, the Board became involved with testing and evaluating field artillery tactics as well as materiel. In 1922, Major General William J. Snow, Chief of the Field Artillery, moved the Board to Camp Bragg, North Carolina, to be near the manufacturing centers on the east coast. During World War II, the Field Artillery Board monitored the actual battlefield performance of materiel by maintaining observers on all fronts.  In 1946, the organization was restructured as part of the Army Ground Forces Board Number 1 which established service test sections for field artillery, communications and electronics, Army aviation, and airborne. In June 1954, the Field Artillery Board returned to Fort Sill.  The purpose of the move was to facilitate coordination and the interchange of ideas and information between the testing community and the Field Artillery School. In 1962, all Headquarters Continental Army System Command branch boards were placed under the command of the U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command (TECOM) in the Army Materiel Command (AMC).  This organization allowed for developmental and operational service testing under one command.

In 1975, the Field Artillery Board, along with other branch-oriented boards, was reorganized under HQ, TRADOC, and placed under the supervision of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Test and Evaluation (DCST&E).  This reorganization collocated the branch-oriented school and the respective test board. In March 1985, TRADOC test activities were placed under the supervision of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Combat Developments (DCSCD).  Technical supervision transferred to the Commander, TRADOC Combined Arms Test Activity (TCATA).  TCATA subsequently became the Test and Experimentation Command. In November 1990, the Operational Test and Evaluation Command was formed with the mission of conducting, reporting, and evaluating the results of the testing of Army materiel and equipment for the Army community.  At this time, the testing boards throughout the United States were renamed directorates.  The TEXCOM Field Artillery Board was renamed the Fire Support Test Directorate. In October 1999, OPTEC was renamed the Army Test and Evaluation Command (ATEC) and given the mission of conducting, reporting, and evaluating the results of both developmental and operational testing.  TEXCOM became the U.S. Army Operational Test Command (USAOTC), but the Fire Support Test Directorate retained its name.

During its history, the Fire Support Test Directorate has tested every fire support system fielded:  the Sense and Destroy Armor Munition, the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System (AFATDS), Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) Brilliant Antiarmor (BAT) Munition, and the Multiple Launch Rocket System Launcher. Throughout its long and colorful history, the USAOTC Fire Support Test Directorate has remained heavily committed to the accomplishment of its mission of planning, conducting, and reporting on operational tests and other type tests of fire support materiel and information to the Army community on materiel and concepts necessary to maintain and improve the latest weaponry, materiel, and tactics.