Concepts & Programs HomeProgramsFocus Area 4: Modernization & TechnologyPart 4: Fire SupportTLDHS

A forward observer from Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, NATO-International Security Assistance Force, pin points his next target on the new Target Location, Designation, and Hand-off System during a live-fire mortar range in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan. The 24th MEU is the first unit to use the TLDHS in a combat environment while in Afghanistan. (Photo/Cpl. Alex C. Guerra)


The THS is a modular, man-portable equipment suite. When THS is used with a Laser Rangefinder (or other target location device) and Combat Net Radio, the operator is able to determine present location of the target and quickly acquire targets under day, night, and limited-visibility conditions. The system allows the operator to generate precise coordinates for inertial-aided munitions employment and forward that data to the tactical data systems, weapons platforms, and Command and Control (C2) nodes using current and planned communications equipment.

THS provides Air Officers and Fire Support Teams with the ability to control and monitor missions and information sent to them from observer/controllers. Air Officers and Fire Support Teams also have the ability to conduct fire support planning and mission execution, to include the generation and submission of Blue Force information and situational graphics to the Common Operational Picture. Additionally, Air Officers are able to digitally monitor all information exchanges between controllers and support Close Air Support platforms.

THS is fielded to Forward Observers, Forward Air Controllers, Joint Terminal Attack Controllers, Joint Forward Observers, Firepower Control Teams, Reconnaissance Teams, Air Officers, Fire Support Coordinators, and Tactical Air Control Parties.

The standard THS mission profile is 72 hours in a tactical field environment. During the mission, THS operates for three six-hour periods. Half of the operating hours occur during daylight, and the other half of the operating hours occur at night.

Operational Impact

The TLDHS provides observers and controllers with the capability to quickly acquire targets, accurately determine observer and target location, export target image and position data, and designate targets for Laser Spot Trackers and Precision Guided Munitions.

Program Status

Block II Initial Operational Capability (IOC) was achieved in fiscal year 2008. Block II Full Operational Capability (FOC) was achieved in the fourth quarter fiscal year 2011.


Stauder Technologies, St. Peters, Missouri