Building Army Prepositioned Stocks
What is it? The Army Prepositioned Stocks (APS) program supports the National Military Strategy by strategically positioning critical warfighting stocks afloat and ashore worldwide to reduce the deployment response times of the modular expeditionary Army. The APS program consists of prepositioned unit sets of equipment, operational projects (OPROJ) which provide specialized capabilities above normal unit equipment authorizations, and sustainment stocks which are prepositioned in or near a theater of operations to last until re-supply at wartime rates and sea lines of communication are established. It also includes War Reserve Stocks for Allies in selected countries which support Allied Force requirements. The centrally managed APS program allows stocks to be moved from one location to another to support combatant commanders in executing multiple simultaneous missions.
What has the Army done?
- Issued three APS brigades and supporting equipment (218 units sets) to the 3rd Infantry Division for Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
- Issued operational projects like the Force Provider modules that continue to provide base support for both Operation Enduring Freedom and OIF
- Improved the methodology for War Reserve Secondary Items (WRSI) prepositioning
- Developed a new APS strategy to configure and position campaign-quality expeditionary capabilities to meet the emerging 21st Century strategic realities facing the Army
- Established two modular brigade sets and two battalion sets in Southwest Asia at the request of Commander, CENTCOM
- Began the reset of the APS-5 early (not planned until 2008)
- Reconfigured APS-4 (Korea) to the new modular Heavy Brigade Combat Team (HBCT) design two years ahead of schedule
- Converted one afloat brigade equipment set (APS-3) to the new modular HBCT design
These accomplishments equate to the Reset of more than a division-sized force and was completed ahead of planned schedules.
What efforts does the Army plan to continue in the future? When the new APS strategy is fully implemented, modular Heavy Brigade Combat Teams (HBCTs) will be land-based and afloat at strategic locations worldwide. These sets will be supported by essential combat support/combat service support (CS/CSS) unit sets, to include medical support and watercraft to support deployment into austere environments. The most significant strategic change, however, involves the evolution of the afloat APS to multi-apportioned Army Strategic Flotillas (ASF) providing both combat and support capabilities. The ASF-HBCT and ASF-Support packages will support and sustain the full range of military operations for early arriving forces.
Why is this important to the Army? The relevance of APS to an Army at war continues to be demonstrated by support to OIF and OEF. APS remains a critical element of the Army Power Projection Program (AP3) and will continue to support operations in the Global War on Terrorism. In addition to being a cornerstone for Army power projection with brigade sets prepositioned worldwide, the OPROJs in APS will continue provide specialized capabilities such as inland petroleum distribution systems, Force Provider base camp modules, and mortuary affairs materiel. Prepositioned sustainment supplies will support APS unit sets and deploying units are used to sustain operations by replacing combat losses, and to replace supplies consumed in the battle. Continued support of the APS transformation strategy is essential to achieve the full capability of the modular expeditionary Army.