A rather dated article, many of the organisational ideas I propose here have been superceeded by those you will find in this article
Brigade Structure intended for Independent Field Deployment or as part of a Division.
Note- In specialist Divisions such as the 82nd Airborne or the 10th Division (should it become a real Mountain Division) the maneuver battalions of a brigade will usually be from the division.
Some of this structure is based on suggestions on the "Next Army" website.
FSB Forward Support Battalion.
Signal Coy. Includes TACSAT and MSE capabilities, as well as any broadcast equipment needed
MP Coy. Capable of E & P operations
SUPPLY and MAINTENANCE Coy
FAARP (w/ AVN MAINT) Maintenance and fueling assets to support two aviation Companies
CARGO HANDLING Coy. Operate the in-coming cargo port (air or sea) that keeps Brigade supplied
Transport Coy. Includes E & P element for self defence.
Aviation Transport Coy, 12 UH-60s, 4 CH-47s, EH-60s attached as needed
Local Support Coy : Water Purification Platoon, Construction ENG Platoon, Firefighting Platoon
CSB -Combat Support Battalion
BDE Recon Troop: 1 Tank Platoon, 1 Heavy/Medium Scout Platoon (Bradley or M113), 1 Light Scout Platoon (HMMWV or Wiesel), 1 LRS-D Platoon (Airborne capable and supplied with light vehicles).
CHEM Coy: DECN Platoon, SMK Platoon, NBC RECON Platoon, and a large amount of early detection devices
Mil-Int Coy: CI Platoon, Interrogator Platoon, Translator Platoon, Jammer/Collector Platoon
Attack Aviation Coy: for example, 2 AH-64D, 6 AH-64C, 8 OH-58D, OH-6s attached as needed
ADA Coy: RADAR Platoon, 2 Avenger Platoon, 1 BSFV Platoon (or ADAT and M113s with Blazer turrets).
SOF DET: 1 SF A-Team, 1 Raid Team (Ranger or Delta), 1 Civilian Liaison Team (works with US civilians such as CIA)
CA DET: PSYOPS Platoon, Broadcast Section, Print Section, Media Affairs Section, Political Affairs Section, NGO Section
3 ENG Coy
ENG RECON Coy.
Target Acquisition Bty (w/ COLTS),
3 Cannon Btys,
1 MLRS Bty.
May also have other batteries such as Heavy mortars and Infantry Guns. Usually a large battalion in strength, but may be of two battalions strength. HHB has facilities to control attached Corps Artillery units.
Has own organic security detachment equipped with infantry weapons and MANPADS.
Aviation companies can also provide indirect ARA fire.
Three Maneuver Battalions (with provision for supporting up to two more).
These battalions are posted to the Brigade from appropriate Regiments. Brigade capabilities can be changed by "mixing and matching" the assigned Maneuver Battalions.
All battalions have a HHC that includes a Signal platoon, Mortar Platoon, Scout Platoon, Service and Supply Platoon and ADA Platoon. The equipment of these Platoons will vary with Battalion type, and battalion type will also effect what other Platoons are found in the HHC.
Scout platoons will range from infantrymen equipped with motorbikes and light vehicles to Tankitas or MBTs.
Infantry Mortar platoons have muzzle loading 81mm and/or 120mm weapons. Other formations may have 120mm Assault gun mortars or 155mm Heavy assault guns. The unit of 155mm Heavy assault guns may be in addition to the battalion's mortars.
In many battalions the Service and Supply force will be mounted on armed and armoured light tracked vehicles so they can keep pace with tanks and IFVs
ADA platoon will usually be MANPAD teams mounted on vehicles. Where possible these vehicles will mount light cannon or heavy machine guns to provide additional AA capability.
HHC (as above), Three companies, each company having a HQ/Support section, two platoons of Tanks and one platoon of Mech Infantry. Alternately there will be two companies of tanks and one or two companies of Infantry.
A Heavy Tank battalion is equipped with M1 Abrams and M2/3 Bradleys. Such Battalions are found in Heavy tank brigades and as independent Corps controlled battalions. A medium tank battalion has M60Z or Bradley medium tanks and M113s or M2 Bradley IFVs. These are often assigned to Infantry and Mech Infantry Brigades.
Mixed company sized battlegroups of tanks and infantry are standard field organisation but such forces are usually formed by combining platoons from homogenous Armour or Mech battalions. In the companies above the infantry are organic to the tank company so infantry and armour are familiar to each other and well practiced at acting together as a cohesive combined arms force.
Mech Infantry BN:
HHC (as above), Two companies of Mech Infantry, one of Armour. Alternately there will be three companies each of one platoon of armour and two or three of infantry.
Infantry are usually mounted on M113s. Armour company may be equipped with M60Z, Bradley medium tanks, M8s or Assault Guns, or a mixture of these systems.
A Mech Infantry batn of three companies of M113s is also possible. This would have a scout platoon of Tankitas and a mortar platoon of 120mm Assault Gun mortars.
HHC (as above), Three to four companies of Infantry. This may include an additional anti-armour company.
HHC includes an emphasis on man-portable weapons. An extra platoon of 81mm mortars may be found and there may be a Mk-19/OCSW platoon and HMG platoon.
Medium Cavalry Battalion ("Squadron")
HHC (as above). One tank company, probably of M8s. One Light track company of M113s and Tankitas. Aviation company of AH-6 Scout-attack and ACH-47/MH-2000X Heavy Lift/Gunbus helicopters.
May be assigned to support Infantry and Mech Infantry brigades instead of a Tank Batn, or more than one can create a Cavalry Brigade.
In practice each tank platoon will pair up with a light track platoon under the command of the light track platoon leader, usually a Captain. A major requirement of the medium cavalry battalion is its capability for independent action. Company commander will probably be a Major in rank.
Air Assault Battalion.
HHC. Aeroscout/Aeroweapons company. Two Aerorifle Companies.
May have air-motor or air-mech capability due to attached or organic vehicles.
New Corps Battalions for attachment to Brigades.
Carrier Attachment Battalion.(CAB)
Formerly know as a TAB or Tracked Armoured Battalion. The CAB is a unit of M113s that can be attached to a non-mechanized force to provide it with light track armoured mobility. Each company of a CAB is configured to move a battalion of infantry or the equivalent.
Gun And Missile Battalion (GAMB).
Battalion equipped with multi-purpose ATGMs and Anti-tank guns. Can be used to increase the anti-armour capability of a brigade. Battalion's weapon system also have other applications such as point defence and counter battery work.
I've expanded on some of the ideas on this page in the following article