Jason Amadi –
FORT CAMPBELL, KY – Program Executive Office (PEO) Soldier concluded a four-day fielding event of the Laser Target Locator Module (LTLM) II units to Soldiers assigned to the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, with a new equipment training (NET) session on Fort Campbell, Dec. 1.
PEO Soldier personnel fielded 166 LTLM II devices and provided Soldiers training on its operations both in the classroom and outdoors in practical exercise scenarios.
“We want them to get as hands-on as possible,” said Mario Garcia, Soldier Precision Targeting Devices New Equipment Training team lead for PEO Soldier. “We also give them the training material because this is a ‘train the trainer’ course. That way, they can take that with them and build the training within their unit.”
LTLM II is a second-generation lightweight, handheld laser target locator with a direct view optic, uncooled thermal camera, low-light camera, eye-safe laser range finder, digital magnetic compass, and a Selective Availability Anti-Spoofing Module (SAASM) GPS receiver. It provides dismounted forward observers, scouts, snipers, and platoon leaders all-weather capability to locate targets accurately and transmit target data.
LTLM II improves upon its predecessors, such as the Target Reconnaissance Infrared Geolocating Range Finder (TRIGR), by being smaller, lighter, and more user-friendly.
“The biggest difference is size and weight. With the TRIGR, we’re going from a five-and-a-half-pound system to a system that’s just over three pounds. And that’s not counting the batteries or tripod. The buttons and menus are easier to operate as well. You have less multi-functions of the buttons, which enhances ease of use. These changes were all the result of Soldier feedback,” said Garcia.
Prior to the LTLM, a single Soldier would determine the location of a target of interest by getting their self-location, finding the potential target, and estimating the distance and direction of the target. Once the self-location, distance and direction to the target are found, the Soldier then would go back to their map and plot the estimated location on it and find the location.
With LTLM II, Soldiers can determine a target location in seconds and much more accurately. Soldier feedback following the hands-on training was positive and many look forward to using LTLM II in the field.
“I think this device is going to be really good to integrate into dismounted reconnaissance teams,” said a Soldier assigned to the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division. It has good thermal capabilities and picture quality, so we’ll be able to deliver really good information to our commander and send that up immediately. The only thing we have that’s comparable to this right now is the AN/PAS-13 and as a tool this is 20 times better.”
In addition to fielding more than 160 units, PEO Soldier personnel were also able implement a software update that allows LTLM II’s fielded prior to September 2021 to communicate with the Precision Fires-Dismounted system. LTLM II’s fielded after September 2021 already have the software installed.
“We conducted software updates on systems previously fielded to 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division while we were here doing this fielding with the 3rd Brigade. The update allows the device to also communicate with the PFD in addition to the Defense Advanced GPS Receiver and Pocket-sized Forward Entry Device. In the event I’m targeting something, instead of having to read off the screen, it’ll send the targeting data to whatever device I’m using, and I can send that digitally to wherever it needs to go,” said Garcia.