For those whose knowledge of Integrated Logistics Support (ILS) leaves something to be desired, Ian Mortimer of Melbourne-based Logistic Engineering Services spelt out to an ILS conference the importance and the fundamentals of this vital process in optimising support for a capability “to the right person, in the right place, and at the right time.”
A more detailed definition by the US Defence Acquisition University, quoted by Mortimer, described ILS as “an integrated and iterative process for developing materiel and a support strategy that optimises functional support, leverages existing resources, and guides the system engineering processes to quantify and lower life cycle cost and decrease the logistics footprint, making the system easier to support.”
The dark art of Logistic Support Analysis (LSA) was summed up by Mortimer as “a rigorous and comprehensively analytical approach and a series of formalised processes which are usually iterative and tailored to suit the program goals, scope and constraints.”
These processes he spelt out as Reliability, Availability and Maintainability (RAM); Failure Modes, Effects and Criticality Analysis (FMECA); Supportability Analysis (SA), Reliability-Centred Maintenance (RCM); Level of Repair Analysis (LORA); Maintenance Task Analysis (MTA); and Life Cycle Costing Analysis (LCC).
For defence contractors, standards and guidance were provided by DEF (AUST) 5691 - Australian Defence Organisation Logistic Support Analysis Handbook, and DEF (AUST) 5692 – Logistic Support Analysis Record Requirements for the Australian Defence Organisation, he noted.
ILS strategy and concepts involved definition of the new capability requirement, initiation of an LSA program, development of an LSA strategy, comparative analysis/alternate support concepts, and implementation of a Front End LSA.
Key ILS outputs and milestones required an Operational Concept Document with mission profiles, usage rates, and an integrated ILS support concept, together with a Function and Performance Specification.
These should be followed by development of a Statement of Work, a Test and Evaluation master plan, finalisation of a Support System Strategy/Solution, selection of a ASDEFCON template, and development and release of a Request for Tender (RfT).
Post tender and contract, acquisition considerations included a statement of work, ILS planning, Requirements and Logistics Support analyses, Support Systems definition and synthesis, followed by Support System delivery.
For ILS sustainment, considerations included urgent operational requirements (surge, contingency/exigency), change of operating envelope, defects, modifications, block upgrades, technology insertion, supply chain, and obsolescence.
No ‘one size fits all’ method covered ILS implementation, Mortimer commented, stressing the need to start early, identify gaps, and engage in training and awareness as quickly as possible.
At the end of the life cycle, disposal had to take into account issues such as problematic substances, excess inventory, treat requirements, IP, security caveats, and export controls.
Ultimately however, the options were “on-sell, gift, mince or sink.”