By: CPT Lindsay Cain, CW5 Scott Brusuelas, and CAPT Matt Butkis

As usual, the Joint Combat Assessment Team (JCAT), consisting of Army, Air Force, and Navy contingents, has been busy getting the mission accomplished. This quarter was filled with travel, including trips to Virginia, Maryland, and Hawaii. These trips provided excellent opportunities for learning from other organizations, for continued training, and for spreading the word about the JCAT mission. The following are a few highlights from each of the trips.

In November, JCAT participated in the National Ground Intelligence Center (NGIC) Combat Incident Database (CDIB) Stakeholder Summit. This event provides a venue to capture current and future customer needs and fully understand the present and future requirements for the CDIB database. Attending this summit provided JCAT an opportunity to get a glimpse into the CDIB database to highlight areas for improvement in our own Combat Damage Incident Reporting System (CDIRS). Lessons learned from the CDIB that would significantly improve CDIRS include connecting incidents to live fire test and evaluation (LFT&E), including medical evaluation data, and continual data review and clean up. Additionally, the summit provided a forum for discussion to address how the aircraft incident reporting community would upscale data capture with significantly more events, how to handle coordinated attacks, and how to deal with chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) and cyber data capture.

In December 2017, JCAT travelled to Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, to conduct a Joint Live Fire (JLF) exercise. The Army JCAT—which included CW5 Scott Brusuelas, CW4 Bart Schmidt, CW4 Mark Chamberlin, CW3 Mike Clark, and Greg Fuchs— were joined by Navy JCAT members CAPT Matt Butkis, CDR Jay Kiser, and LTJG Dan Rolfe for this exercise. Over the course of 3 days, the team observed the JLF event and assessed the munitions effects on fixed-wing aircraft components. The components will be used as training aids at the Aircraft Combat Forensics Lab at Fort Rucker, AL. The fixed-wing platform is a new addition to the Fort Rucker training facility and will be used to support JCAT training, as well as other professional military education courses conducted at Fort Rucker. This hands-on training reinforces the skills necessary to conduct aircraft combat damage collection and assessment of foreign weapons effects on U.S. aircraft and strengthens the JCAT relationship between its Service components.

Finally, JCAT attended the U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) Combined Information Data Network Exchange (CIDNE) in Hawaii. CIDNE offers a platform to host, collect, integrate, and analyze various data sets across multiple applications and security domains across the operational spectrum. The purpose of JCAT participation was twofold: initiate Aircraft Combat Damage Reporting (ACDR) initiatives for PACOM and communicate the JCAT capability throughout the PACOM community. The trip was successful on all fronts (including escaping this winter’s below-zero temperatures).

In addition to all the traveling, JCAT had some hails and farewells this quarter. In December 2017, the Army component of JCAT—the Aviation Shoot Down Assessment Team (ASDAT)—bid farewell to CW3 Chris Crawford. Chris served with ASDAT since 2015 and has been reassigned to Fort Carson, CO. While assigned to ASDAT, Chris served as a lead action officer for the Aviation Radio Frequency Survivability Validation (AVRFSV) Quick Reaction Test (QRT). The results of this test have greatly impacted the survivability of Army aviation, as well as the Joint rotary-wing community, against foreign radar threat systems. His hard work and dedication served the QRT, ASDAT, and JCAT well. We wish Chris and his family good luck!

Finally, Air Force JCAT is excited to add LTC Andrew Roberts to the team. Andrew comes from HQ AFMC A4, where he worked on establishing Repair Network Integration across the maintenance enterprise. He has a background in aircraft maintenance, acquisitions, and engineering development/field support. On the civilian side, he works for GE Healthcare in Milwaukee, WI, and is President of Fisher House Wisconsin, helping to provide a home away from home for military families in their time of need. Welcome, Andrew!