By Capt. Corey Robertson (FORSCOM)September 15, 2014
FORT SILL, Okla- Recently, 4th Battalion 3rd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 31st Air Defense Artillery Brigade completed their Standardized Patriot Evaluation and Assessment Reporting or SPEAR which evaluates the unit's mission readiness to assume the Contingency Expeditionary Force or CEF mission later this year.
SPEAR is designed to test and evaluate the unit's ability to assume the vital mission of air defense through computer simulation and real-time reporting. The Patriot Missile crews are given multiple engagement scenarios which allow them to be fully engaged in air-battles and make critical engagement decisions.
"SPEAR's are designed to ensure units are accurately reporting their combat readiness with relation to Patriot missile gunnery, this reporting information ensures Patriot crews are operating at the highest readiness level possible," said 31st ADA Brigade, Air Defense Master Evaluator, Sgt. 1st Class Rusty Bailey.
To ensure that the crews are given a fair and un-biased evaluation, evaluators from other brigades and the staff within 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command were there to evaluate the crews.
"The purpose of this operation is to support 4-3 ADA with intense Air and Missile Defense training in order to provide and external assessment of 4-3 ADA Gunnery Training Program," said 31st ADA Brigade Air Missile Defense System Technician, Chief Warrant Officer 4, Anson Seebeck.
The evaluators administered a written test and then conducted air battle management assessments of the Battalion's Fire Direction Center and Battery Fire Control Platoon. Using outside evaluators also gives units a chance to exercise their joint kill chain as they would in theater.
"We assessed 94% which is phenomenal; it was a good experience for us to have external evaluators from every brigade in 32nd AAMDC come to give us feedback," said 4-3 ADA Battalion Electronic Missile Maintenance Officer Chief Warrant Officer Matthew Keechi
"SPEAR's are a validation of our crews, it ensures they know what they are doing when fighting an air battle, and it enables confidence and growth in crews to make those quick decisions which can save lives."
4-3 ADA will assume the CEF mission later this year and will be part of a global response force that will be able to respond and deploy within 72 hours.