The Logistic Vehicle Modernization project will modernize and improve those elements of Land Force logistics vehicle capability that will not be modernized by the Medium Support Vehicle System project. Improvements to payload, functionality, mobility, protection, and firepower are expected. Project deliverables may include, but not be limited to new vehicles, trailers, special equipment vehicle kits, special containers and bulk material handling systems, and material handling equipment.
In its Canada First Defence Strategy, the Government has articulated a level of ambition that the Canadian Forces must be able to respond to and sustain six core missions in Canada, in North America and abroad. The Government has also committed to renewing the Forces' equipment including the progressive acquisition of a new family of land combat vehicles and systems, including support vehicles. Indeed, because in-service fleets of logistics vehicles are reaching obsolescence or are rusted out, as well as lacking modern functionality, the acquisition of modernized trucks was announced and commenced in advance of the Defence Strategy. A modern logistics vehicle capability is required to provide flexibility to the Government in responding to the six core missions. If not addressed, continued degradation of sustainment capability will reduce readiness and prevent fulfillment of the Government's level of ambition. A modern logistics vehicle capability must be able to transport the full spectrum and quantity of cargo, as well as seamlessly interact with worldwide intermodal cargo transportation systems operating by road, rail, sea and air.
Land Operations 2021: The Force Employment Concept for Canada's Army of Tomorrow is the Army's capstone document for guiding future land force generation. In it, the approach to future land operations is characterized by the deliberate use of dispersion and aggregation undertaken by adaptive forces in order to create and sustain tactical advantage over adept, adaptive adversaries. These Adaptive Dispersed Operations envisage employing highly adaptive land forces dispersed in time, space and purpose throughout the width and depth of the battle space in order to create and exploit opportunities, control the tempo of operations and overwhelm the adversary's understanding of that battle space. The fundamentals of adaptive dispersed operations include, but are not limited to manoeuvring to positions of advantage, using lethal effects to influence the adversary beyond the range of his weapons, destr 1ff9 oying the enemy with precision effects, conducting close engagement at the time and place of our own choosing and transitioning between operations without loss of focus or momentum. Sustainment of adaptive dispersed operations will integrate strategic, operational and tactical levels of support to generate and maintain force capability, and will include the provision of material support to ensure the sustainment of combat power.
The in-service fleets of Land logistics vehicles, designed in the Cold War for contiguous, linear operations, are not suited to adaptive dispersed operations, in which non-contiguous, non-linear operations have been and are expected to continue as the norm. In-service fleets are simply classed by their payload capability as light, medium, heavy and super-heavy vehicles. Delivered to the Land Force in the 1980s and 1990s, in-service logistics vehicles face obsolescence and rust out. Lessons learned in the Balkans and Afghanistan highlighted deficiencies in payload, functionality, mobility, protection and firepower. The Medium Support Vehicle System project, currently in Implementation, is leading the modernization of Land logistics vehicle capability by providing a modernized medium payload capability. This Logistics Vehicle Modernization project will address the deficiencies of the light, heavy and super-heavy Land logistics vehicle capabilities.
The worldwide introduction of intermodal containers has allowed pre-configured loads to be seamlessly trans-shipped across any mode of transportation including by road, rail, sea and air, without the requirement to repackage loads. Canadian and allied forces use intermodal containers for strategic cargo shipment. While most allied forces have container capable logistics vehicles for tactical level shipment, Canada does not. Because our in-service logistics vehicles are not designed for such loads, significant effort is expended to manhandle and re-package loads from containers to cargo trucks for tactical level shipment. Additionally, because in-service trucks have less payload capacity, more trucks and crew are potentially required to move the same load over the same time period. Because of their weight and size, intermodal containers require logistics vehicles with appropriate payloads as well as load handling functionality. The payload and functionality of logistics vehicles must therefore be optimized for transporting intermodal containers. Changes to the payload and load handling systems will likely affect in-service trailers, bulk commodity handling systems, material handling equipment and special vehicle kits. These will also need to be modernized so that the functionality and effectiveness of the Land Force logistics system is maximized.
Combat vehicles no longer include specialty support variants. Forward operating bases are established and re-established in dispersed locations throughout an area of operations. To support combat vehicles and forward operating bases, logistics vehicles must be able to operate in the same non-contiguous, non-linear adaptive dispersed battle space. In-service vehicles possess inadequate mobility and protection, including self-defence firepower, to achieve these roles effectively. While add-on armour kits have been designed for use on in-service logistics vehicles, they offer inadequate protection, dramatically reduce vehicle payload capacity and further reduce mobility. None of the logistics vehicles have any form of self-defence firepower capability.
Finally, availability of in-service logistics vehicles has been decreasing steadily due to obsolescence because parts are harder or more expensive to acquire. A decade and a half of operations in the Balkans and Afghanistan have also caused excessive wear and tear on the fleets as well as irreparable battle damage, further decreasing the fleet sizes. Always operating as a member of a coalition in which only standard fuels are available, Canadian logistics vehicles must be able to operate on the NATO single-fuel standard (JP8), as well as on high-sulphur diesel that is often the only fuel available in many of the potential operating areas to which Canadian Forces may be expected to deploy. The in-service light logistics vehicle fleet is incapable of operating on the NATO standard fuel and as a result this fleet can not be deployed on coalition expeditionary operations where its fuel source is unavailable.