News: Marines receive new equipment, upgrade capabilities
Story by Lance Cpl. Jose Lujano
CAMP KINSER, Okinawa - Marines with Electronics Maintenance Company received a new calibration system recently and trained with the equipment April 29 to May 10 at the battalion’s calibration lab on Camp Kinser.
Marines depend on their equipment to function properly regardless of their military occupational specialty. When it doesn’t function properly, it’s important to fix it quickly and return it to Marines who need it most.
The company, which is part of 3rd Maintenance Battalion, Combat Logistics Regiment 35, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, provides this service to keep III Marine Expeditionary Force in a high state of readiness.
The new system enhances the unit’s capability to calibrate various pieces of equipment via mechanical, fiber optic and radio frequency methods.
“For instance, we calibrate the meters inside the shoulder-launched multipurpose assault weapon, so when a Marine pulls the trigger, it sends the proper electrical signal that fires the weapon,” said Staff Sgt. Benjamin R. Schultz, a metrology technician with battalion.
Instructors assigned to the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Corona, Calif., flew to Okinawa to train the maintainers who will use the ANTSM 214 Alpha system, which consists of four, 20 foot by 8 foot expeditionary shelters with complete calibration capabilities.
All of the calibration systems used within the Marine Corps require some form of initial testing to ensure they are functioning properly, according to Romeo V. Galbreath, an engineering technician and instructor with NSWC.
“Primarily, the NSWC specializes in independent assessments of the Navy’s warfare systems. However, our group deals with Marine Corps calibration systems,” said Galbreath. “The mission during this two-week process was to set up the new systems, train the Marines, and verify they are becoming subject-matter experts with their craft.”
With the new upgrades Marines will be able to return the calibrated equipment to users immediately.
“There was a lot of equipment that came through our lab that we did not have the capability to calibrate, so what we would do is ship it to another lab in the States,” said Schultz. “Now, with the newly advanced equipment we are able to perform those tasks here, which reduces turnaround time and increases our unit and the MEF’s capabilities.”
The verification of the systems that are calibrated hold a high degree of importance for the readiness and safety of Marines in a combat, training or garrison environment, according to Schultz.
Precision and accuracy is imperative when calibrating equipment because every Marine depends on their equipment doing what it is designed to do, according to Lance Cpl. Justin W. Ivie, a calibration technician with the battalion.
The new calibration equipment presents a new challenge for the Marines, and the maintainers are anxious to learn how to use it to perfect their craft, ensuring Marines possess the equipment they need for mission success, according to Galbreath.