The Future of Heavy Lift
MARINE CORPS UNIV QUANTICO VA SCHOOL OF ADVANCED WARFIGHTING
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The development of the Operational Maneuver from the Sea OMFTS concept will change Marine Corps Aviation forever. Marine Air will be required to fly faster and farther as maneuver space and logistics tails grow. While the MV-22 Osprey will provide this Over the Horizon OTH capability, it is strictly a medium lift aircraft. It will never be able to provide the heavy lift support currently provided by the CH-53E helicopter. When the CH-53Es service life expires around the year 2025, a replacement heavy lift aircraft will be needed. A tilt rotor aircraft is the only way to go for the Marine Corps to fully maximize OMFTS from an aviation perspective. Ship to Objective Maneuver STOM views the sea as maneuver space, using the sea as both a protective barrier and an unrestricted avenue of approach. Sea basing of fire and logistics support will reduce the footprint of forces ashore while the tempo of operations is maintained Expeditionary 3200-B-1. As a result, assault units will not have to pause ashore while a beachhead is established. To support STOM, Marine Air Ground Task Force MAGTF air assets will be required to fly extended ranges at increased airspeeds to prosecute targets deep in hostile territory. The MV-22 is the Marine Corps current answer to implementing OMFTSSTOM from an aviation perspective. The Osprey will eventually replace the Marine Corps CH-46E and CH-53D. It has an increased combat radius of 200 nautical miles when carrying 24 combat loaded troops or 50 nautical miles when carrying a 10,000-pound load. Its airspeed of 240 knots will also enable the MV-22 to cover these distances at twice the rate of current Marine helicopters. With these capabilities, the Osprey will provide the Marine Corps with an outstanding medium lift platform well into the 21st century. A decision has not yet been made on the design of the CH-53E replacement, currently referred to as the Joint Common Lift JCL.
- Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics