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Brigade Combat Team

Definition/Scope: As combined arms organizations, BCTs form the basic building block of the Army's tactical formations. They are the principal means of executing engagements. Three standardized BCT designs exist: heavy, infantry, and Stryker. Battalion-sized maneuver, fires, reconnaissance, and sustainment units are organic to BCTs. BCTs are modular organizations. They begin as a cohesive combined arms team that can be further task-organized. Commands often augment them for a specific mission with capabilities not organic to the BCT structure. Augmentation might include lift or attack aviation, armor, cannon or rocket artillery, air defense, military police, civil affairs, psychological operations elements, combat engineers, or additional information systems assets. This organizational flexibility allows BCTs to function across the spectrum of conflict. The Army plans to convert BCTs to very advanced combined arms formations equipped with the family of future combat systems. These highly modernized brigades will consist of three combined arms battalions, a non-line-of-sight cannon battalion, reconnaissance surveillance and target acquisition squadron, brigade support battalion, brigade intelligence and communications company, and a headquarters company. The brigade combat teams equipped with future combat systems will improve the strategic and operational reach of ground combat formations without sacrificing lethality or survivability. Well before the future combat systems brigades join the operating forces, the Army will field some advanced systems to the current force. FM 3-0

Used For:

units of action



Broader Terms:

Army modularity
Battle Command Training Center
common operational picture
Full spectrum operations
Joint capabilities
modular force structure

Narrower Terms:

evaluation brigade combat teams
Heavy Brigade Combat Team
Infantry Brigade Combat Team
Stryker Brigade Combat Team

Related Terms:

Common Logistics Command and Control System
Infantry Brigade Combat Team
modular force structure

CALL Homepage >> Thesaurus Last Updated: Sept 17, 2008