The Army defines SHORAD as:
Dedicated air defense artillery (ADA) and non-dedicated air defense capabilities that enable movement and maneuver by destroying, neutralizing or deterring low altitude air threats to defend critical fixed and semi-fixed assets and maneuver forces.
The Army summarizes the recent history and current state of Army SHORAD in the following section:
Short-range air defense artillery units were historically embedded in Army divisions, providing them with an organic capability to protect their critical assets against fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft. However, in the early 2000s, these ADA units were divested from the Army to meet force demands deemed more critical at that time. Decision-makers accepted the risk that threat aircraft might have on maneuver forces and other critical assets because we believed the Air Force could maintain air superiority. Thus, the short-range ADA force post-2005 was reduced to two battalions of active component Avenger and counter-rocket, artillery and mortar batteries and seven National Guard Avenger battalions; none of which are organic divisional elements. Defense against air threats in maneuver forces is currently limited to that provided by organic weapons and maneuver personnel.
Since 2005, there has been a dramatic increase in air and missile platforms that could threaten U.S. ground forces. The use of unmanned aerial systems (UASs) has increased exponentially, and UASs have been used successfully by both sides in the Russo-Ukrainian conflict. Furthermore, fixed-wing aircraft, attack helicopters, and cruise missiles continue to pose a significant threat to U.S. ground forces. In its 2015 report to the President and Congress, the National Commission on the Future of the Army noted, among things, there were unacceptable modernization shortfalls in SHORAD and those major shortfalls caused other concerns across a wide range of contingencies, including in Europe and the Korean peninsula.
While Initial Maneuver, Short-Range Air Defense (IM-SHORAD) is primarily intended to defend maneuver forces against air threats, it also has the capability to engage a range of ground targets.
The Army has requested $17 million in FY2019, $72.7 million in FY2020, $152 million in FY2021, $443 million in FY2022, and $291 million in FY2023 for IM-SHORAD procurement. IM-SHORAD is an Army directed requirement to address the urgent need to support Operation Atlantic Resolve to provide air and missile defense protection of Stryker and Armored Brigade Combat Teams. IM-SHORAD is the Army's "initial" solution, and new weapons systems and weapons carriers might be incorporated into future variants. The Army reportedly plans to procure 144 IM-SHORAD Systems, with the objective to equip the first and second battalions with 36 systems apiece by FY2021 and a third and fourth battalion with 36 systems each by FY2022. The House and Senate Armed Services Committees have recommended fully funding the Army's FY2019 IM SHORAD budget request. The House Appropriations Committee also recommends fully funding the FY2019 request, and the Senate Appropriations defense subcommittee has yet to markup its version of the FY2019 appropriations bill.
The Army reportedly categorizes IM-SHORAD as a rapid acquisition system and is not scheduled to go through a standard defense acquisition development cycle, but is to be developed under the Other Transaction Authority (OTA) contracting process. IM-SHORAD uses the M-1126 Stryker combat vehicle as its chassis. The weapons and radar packages will reportedly be put together by Leonardo DRS and then installed on the Stryker by General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS)—the vehicle's original manufacturer. The Leonardo DRS–developed multi-purpose unmanned turret reportedly will include