the battlefield, a subset of intelligence preparation of the battlefield (IPB), will provide the signal officer
and staff with an evaluation of the effects of the weather and terrain on friendly signal operations. It can
also provide a thorough understanding of the enemy REC threat to our communications and assist the
signal officer in electronic counter countermeasures (ECCM) and countersurveillance planning.
(4) Troops. The number and type of friendly troops affect the tactical plan. Knowing what
Army signal support troops are available and what other signal support manpower assets are available, is
essential. These assets include sister services, other U.S. agencies, allies, host nation support, and
captured equipment. When such assets are available, the commander can plan for their best use.
Additionally, the overall status of signal support soldiers is important. This includes training level,
previous experience, morale, leadership, percentage of available strength, and current status (for
example, whether they are operating in full mission-oriented protection posture (MOPP) for extended
(5) Time. The commander must have the necessary time to ensure the operation is properly
synchronized. This requires good signal support. The time to install signal support equipment
obviously precedes establishing signal support. The time to plan and install a network that provides
maximum integration of all signal assets is critical to mission accomplishment. The commander must
allocate and protect the time signal support personnel need to properly develop a signal support plan.
There is a requirement to periodically synchronize time among accurate automated systems. Signal
support must provide precise time on a periodic basis to synchronize battlefield automated systems.
b. Understand signal support assets, capabilities, and limitations. The commander must
understand the capabilities, limitations, and operating characteristics of his signal support assets. Assets
for a heavy maneuver force may be task organized differently from those of a light infantry force.
Assets required to provide signal support for a traditional European battlefield differ from those in a low
intensity conflict (LIC) in Central America. These special operations can require unique signal support
assets. A variety of signal support assets can be used to support various requirements. The commander
must know what signal support assets are available and what their limitations and capabilities are. The
mismatching of equipment to the mission can severely hinder the execution of the best tactical plan.
The integration of signal planning with the execution of the operation must be an integral part of the
commander's maneuver plan.
c. Ensure availability of logistical and security support to sustain widely dispersed and
sometimes remote signal assets. Signal support assets are as widely dispersed as the units they support.
These assets may be organic to, attached to, under OPCON of, or in direct support of another unit.
Therefore, they may require external logistical support and must integrate into the security of that unit.
Signal support assets that provide an area coverage, or relay operations that are isolated from other
friendly units, require special consideration. They may need external logistical support. Additionally,
signal support units are not