Experiment Division
MCWL Experiment Division
Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory / Futures Directorate
Quantico, VA


Experiment Division plans, executes and analyzes the results of a program of concept-based live-force experiments enhanced by modeling and simulation in order to inform the DC, Combat Development & Integration, requirements process and the efforts of other organizations to advance Marine Corps capabilities.  Results include assessment of emerging concepts, development of new and innovative tactics, techniques and procedures, and recommended enhancements to current and future organizational structures and training.

The Warfighting Lab is unique in that it uses the operating forces as its experiment force.  We do this because we want an educated customer and unvarnished input from the men and women who have the highest stake in our products.  The quality of today’s Marine ensures a high level of intellectual engagement and thoughtful, clearly articulated feedback – at all levels.

Experiments take multiple forms and use a combination of methods to come to a conclusion.  These include seminars, wargames, modeling, simulation, technical assessments, and ultimately live-force operations.  With larger, more encompassing concepts, a series of limited objective experiments is used to examine specific aspects of a designated concept(s), often times culminating in what we call an Advanced Warfighting Experiment that ties together the result of previous years’ experimentation in a single, large-scale event.

Close collaboration among the four branches of Experiment Division is essential to success. Each plays a role in moving each experiment from beginning to end.



Plans Branch

The Plans Branch develops the Warfighting Laboratory Experiment Campaign Plan (ECP), which covers five years and is updated annually. It is the controlling document for Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory experimentation and provides commanders guidance along with specific project initiatives. It also serves as one of the base-line documents for preparing the budget. Plans Branch does initial planning for specific experiments, including deconfliction of experiments in time and space, schedules of operating force support, and preparing budgets for individual experiments.

Analysis Branch

The Analysis Branch is involved in each experiment from its inception. Throughout the planning process, they ensure that experiment events will result in data that answers the questions and is sufficient to provide a level of confidence in the results. Center for Naval Analyses personnel correlate and consolidate the statistical results of the experiment and create an independent report.

Field Testing Branch

The Field Testing Branch (FTB) performs the detailed planning and actual execution of the concept-based experiments. It also develops tactics, techniques, and procedures that enable the concept to be validated, and then trains the Experiment Force in those concepts. Finally, FTB, in close coordination with Technology Division, integrates commercial off-the-shelf, government, and developmental technologies into experiments.

Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory