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This monograph summarizes work performed during a quick-response analytic effort in support of the 2001 Army Science Board Summer Study on Objective Force Soldier, along with subsequent efforts in related areas. The purpose of the research was to explore and assess technology options for future dismounted soldiers that could improve mission effectiveness and reduce casualties. Options examined included the objective individual combat weapon (OICW, a rifle and precision explosive round combination, now designated the XM-29), improved body armor, better sensors, the use of small unguided vehicles in support of operations, links to indirect fires, and signature-reduction techniques. The work used high-resolution constructive simulation (based on Janus and associated models) to examine these aspects, with the modeling taking place in the 2015-2020 time frame. The primary scenario employed was a highly stressing mission involving a dismounted attack on an enemy position in complex terrain. The central findings were that soldier effectiveness and survivability could be moderately improved by individual systems (such as the XM-29, body armor, and links to indirect fire), but significant improvements resulted only from applications of combined systems.

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The research described in this report was sponsored by the United States Army and performed within the RAND Arroyo Center.

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