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Master Sgt. Alex Ng, the field artillery chief assigned to Battery Q, 5th Battalion, 11th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, explains the abilities of the M142 High-Mobility Artillery Rocket System to Maj. Rafael Pires Ferreira, a battery commander with Brazil’s Corpo de Fuzileios, aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., Aug. 5, 2015. Two Brazilian military officers participated in a Subject Matter Expert Exchange with the Marines and Sailors of 11th Marines to compare standard operating procedures and to share experiences and ideas.

Photo by Cpl. William Perkins

Brazilians, Marines talk rockets

12 Aug 2015 | Cpl. William Perkins 1st Marine Division

Two Brazilian artillery officers with the Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais, visited 5th Battalion, 11th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, to share and discuss information on military operations, unit structure and different weapons systems, aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California, Aug. 5-9, 2015. CFN is a strategic partner and one of the most capable amphibious marine forces in the region.

“The purpose of their visit was to understand the High-Mobility Artillery Rocket System battery and battalion organization within the Marine Corps, how we utilize HIMARS in amphibious operations and how we tactically employ them in other operations as well,” said Capt. Brian Pegram, battery commander, Battery Q, 5/11.

Pegram, a Crowley, Texas, native, said the Brazilians utilize the Artillery Saturation Rocket System, which is similar to the HIMARS, but differs in the fact that it is not guided by satellites. 

“We came to visit the Marines to see how they employ the HIMARS,” said Maj. Rafael Pires Ferreira, an artillery officer with the Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais, the Brazilian equivalent of the U.S. Marine Corps. “With the ASTROS system being new in Brazil, there’s a blank space in the doctrine as far as deploying the rocket system.”

He added the Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais has a standing doctrine for utilizing the artillery system but they are hoping to apply more effective methods in applying the ASTROS to fit their expeditionary requirements.

“From the conversations that we’ve had, they’re sharing what their capabilities are and how they can use their unguided weapon system similar to ours,” stated Pegram stated.

“Because of the differences between the Brazilian and U.S. Marine Corps operations, we’re not going to adopt the standard operating procedures, but it’s going to be learning from each other,” Ferreira explained. “We’re going to adapt it. Take part of this knowledge from the Marine Corps and vice versa.”

This exchange allows the Marine Corps and its partner, CFN, to address shared values, challenges and responsibilities to further develop their vital partnership.


1st Marine Division