Conquering the Iron Mountain: reducing the Marine Expeditionary Unit's logistics footprint within the amphibious readiness group
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The Marine Corps-Navy team employs a concept of forward power projection under the Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU). The MEU is built around a reinforced infantry battalion and an attached aviation element. The logistical unit of the MEU is the Combat Logistic Battalion (CLB). The CLB is tasked with embarking with 15 days of supply (DOS) to support the entire MEU should it be tasked into an austere environment for actions across a range of military operations (ROMO). Over the course of this sustainment concept, the Marine Corps has developed logistics habits, often dubbed the "Iron Mountain," that have led to each CLB on each MEU embarking with as much materiel as possible in order to meet the deployed maintenance needs. This process has led to great waste and an unnecessarily large materiel footprint, both aboard U.S. Navy ships and on the ground. This project sought to create a method that can be used to create the sustainment block more efficiently and in far less time using historical usage data and better information about resupply lead times, criticality, and demand. This data was analyzed using a multiattribute decision-making tool to weigh all factors and found that it is possible to craft a better source of sustainment.
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