STANDARDIZED PLATOON OPERATIONS CENTER CONFIGURATION
The platoon operations center of the Paladin platoon is in an M577 command post carrier. The additional equipment associated with the Paladin system, particularly the fielding of the SINCGARS, requires revision of the POC layout for an M109A2/A3 unit as outlined in
FM 6-40. Figure F-1 shows a top view of the inside, and Figure F-4 shows a top view from the outside. Changes are noted in the following paragraphs and figures.
F-2. INSIDE VIEW, M577
1. The internal right side configuration includes the modifications discussed below.
a. CVC Helmet Hanger:
A storage cabinet with combat vehicle crewman's (CVC) helmet hanger may be fabricated from sheet metal or wood. The recommended dimensions are 19 1/2 inches high x 17 1/2 inches wide x 21 3/4 inches deep.
b. Map/Overlay Storage:
A map and overlay storage container may be made with 3-inch plastic pipe and joining collars.
c. Securing Map Boards:
A sliding tactical map and unit status charts are added. By securing a track along the top right side, a unit may secure sliding Plexiglas map boards for easy use by the crew. After mounting the maps, the crew may transfer tactical overlays to the Plexiglas. The crew may then attach the unit status boards to the side of the M577 and track pertinent unit data thereon.
d. Fire Direction Chief's Chair:
For the fire direction chief's chair, the unit can secure a swivel chair, minus legs, to the shelf. To maintain access to the battery compartment, an easy or quick disconnect is required.
2. The internal left side configuration includes the modifications discussed below.
a. Intercom Box Mounts:
Intercom boxes are mounted on a mounting plate that may be fabricated by the unit. Thus, the intercom boxes can be moved out of the way to the top shelf with the radios.
b. Radio Mounts:
The SINCGARS are radios mounted in "doghouses." Mounting the radios in the protective housing lets the crew stack the radios effectively.
c. Storage Shelf Height:
The shelf above the LCU is raised 3.5 inches. Fabricate metal mounting straps to raise the shelf above the LCU. This eliminates the need to cut the shelf.
d. Manual Storage Cabinet:
A manual storage cabinet can be made from metal or wood and used to store reference manuals and other required papers. The recommended dimensions are 11 inches high x 32 inches wide x 12 inches deep.
e. Swivel Stool:
The unit could use a swivel stool with back or order the swivel seat from the variable format message entry device (VFMED) installation kit for the M577.
F-3. OTHER IMPROVEMENTS, M577
Other considerations for overall improvement of the POC include the following:
- Install 24-volt fans along the ceiling by the work stations to aid in cooling and ventilation.
- Install encased fluorescent light fixtures to increase lighting and decrease heat generated by incandescent lighting.
- Install heavy-duty rubber floor matting.
- Remove table or work extensions except at the situation map center.
- Attach cork board to the wall of the M577 at the RATELO's station for charts, notes, and a call-sign board.
- Consider using velcro strips or velcro-backed boards for quick removal and updating. This is especially useful if multiple boards are maintained and various setups can be used (e.g., tent extension or a modified trailer).
- Consider installing a map display with the materials listed at figure F-2, (Reference: FM 1-111, page 2-32).
Figure F-1. Inside View, Top
Figure F-2. Example Map Display
F-4. INSIDE VIEW, TENT EXTENSION OR PLATOON LEADER'S HMMWV
The internal right side configuration (Figure F-3) includes the modifications discussed below.
(a) Tactical Map:
Tactical map is used by the Platoon Leader to track the maneuver situation and plan tactical moves.
(b) Work Table:
The work table is used to develop movement instructions or the chart operator can work here instead of inside the M577.
(c) Status/Ammunition Board:
The Platoon Leader monitors the status/ammunition board to track Class III, Class V, Class IX, and howitzer status. This takes the responsibility of admin/log requirements out of the M577 and allows them to concentrate on tactical fire direction of the platoon.
(c) Platoon Leader's Battlebook:
This book is an easily transportable binder used by the platoon leader when he is away from the POC. The book should contain all the information maintained on the POC's status charts and all reports. It is maintained by the platoon leader and provides redundancy for platoon operations.
Figure F-3. Inside view, Right.
Figure F-4. Outside View, Top.