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Military glossary - Letter M


See tank, combat, full-tracked, 90-mm gun.

See Marine air command and control system.

Mach hold mode
(DOD) In a flight control system, a control mode in which a desired flight (flying) speed of an aircraft expressed as a mach number is maintained automatically.
Mach number indicator
See machmeter.

Magnetic declination
(DOD, NATO) The angle between the magnetic and geographical meridians at any place, expressed in degrees east or west to indicate the direction of magnetic north from true north. In nautical and aeronautical navigation, the term magnetic variation is used instead of magnetic declination and the angle is termed variation of the compass or magnetic variation. Magnetic declination is not otherwise synonymous with magnetic variation which refers to regular or irregular change with time of the magnetic declination, dip, or intensity.

Magnetic minehunting
(DOD) The process of using magnetic detectors to determine the presence of mines or minelike objects.

See Marine air-ground task force.

Main line of resistance
(DOD) A line at the forward edge of the battle position, designated for the purpose of coordinating the fire of all units and supporting weapons, including air and naval gunfire. It defines the forward limits of a series of mutually supporting defensive areas, but it does not include the areas occupied or used by covering or screening forces.

Major disaster
See domestic emergencies.

Major weapon system
(DOD) One of a limited number of systems or subsystems which, for reasons of military urgency, criticality, or resource requirements, is determined by the Department of Defense as being vital to the national interest.

Manipulative electromagnetic deception
See electromagnetic deception.

Map convergence
(DOD, NATO) The angle at which one meridian is inclined to another on a map or chart.

Map reference code
(DOD, NATO) A code used primarily for encoding grid coordinates and other information pertaining to maps. This code may be used for other purposes where the encryption of numerals is required.

Marine air command and control system
(DOD) A system which provides the aviation combat element commander with the means to command, coordinate, and control all air operations within an assigned sector and to coordinate air operations with other Services. It is composed of command and control agencies with communications-electronics equipment that incorporates a capability from manual through semiautomatic control.

Marine TACC
See tactical air command center.

Maritime prepositioning force operation
(DOD) A rapid deployment and assembly of a Marine expeditionary force in a secure area using a combination of strategic airlift and forward-deployed maritime prepositioning ships.

(DOD) 1. In artillery and naval gunfire support: a. to call for fire on a specified location in order to orient the observer/spotter or to indicate targets; b. to report the instant of optimum light on the target produced by illumination shells. 2. In naval operations, to use a maritime unit to maintain an immediate offensive or obstructive capability against a specified target.

Married failure
(DOD, NATO) In naval mine warfare, a moored mine lying on the seabed connected to its sinker from which it has failed to release owing to defective mechanism.

See measurement and signature intelligence.

Master air attack plan
(DOD) A plan that contains key information that forms the foundation of the joint air tasking order. Sometimes referred to as the air employment plan or joint air tasking order shell. Information which may be included: joint force commander guidance, joint force air component commander guidance, support plans, component requests, target update requests, availability of capabilities/forces, target information from target lists, aircraft allocation, etc.

Materials handling equipment
(DOD) Mechanical devices for handling of supplies with greater ease and economy.

Materiel release confirmation
(DOD) A notification from a shipping/storage activity advising the originator of a materiel release order of the positive action taken on the order. It will also be used with appropriate shipment status document identifier codes as a reply to a followup initiated by the inventory control point.

Maximum aircraft arresting hook load
(DOD) The maximum load experienced by an aircraft arresting hook assembly during an arrestment.

Maximum permissible concentration
See radioactivity concentration guide.

See movement control team.

M-day force materiel requirement
(DOD) The quantity of an item required to be on hand and on order (on M-day minus one day) to equip and provide a materiel pipeline for the approved peacetime US force structure, both active and reserve.

Measurement and signature intelligence
(DOD) Scientific and technical intelligence obtained by quantitative and qualitative analysis of data (metric, angle, spatial, wavelength, time dependence, modulation, plasma, and hydromagnetic) derived from specific technical sensors for the purpose of identifying any distinctive features associated with the target, source, emitter, or sender measurement of the same. The detected feature may be either reflected or emitted.

Medical treatment facility
(DOD) A facility established for the purpose of furnishing medical and/or dental care to eligible individuals.

Medical treatment facility
(DOD) A facility established for the purpose of furnishing medical and/or dental care to eligible individuals.

Medium-angle loft bombing
(DOD) Type of loft bombing wherein weapon release occurs at an angle between 35 and 75 degrees above the horizontal.

Medium-range bomber aircraft
(DOD) A bomber designed for a tactical operating radius of under 1,000 nautical miles at design gross weight and design bomb load.

Merchant ship casualty report
(DOD) A report by message, or other means, of a casualty to a merchant ship at sea or in port. Merchant ship casualty reports are sent by the escort force commander or other appropriate authority to the operational control authority in whose area the casualty occurred.

Message (telecommunications)
(DOD) Record information expressed in plain or encrypted language and prepared in a format specified for intended transmission by a telecommunications system.

Meteorological data
(DOD) Meteorological facts pertaining to the atmosphere, such as wind, temperature, air density, and other phenomena which affect military operations.

See Marine expeditionary unit (special operations capable).

Midcourse guidance
(DOD) The guidance applied to a missile between termination of the boost phase and the start of the terminal phase of flight.

Military Assistance Articles and Services List
(DOD) A Department of Defense publication listing source, availability, and price of items and services for use by the unified commands and Military Departments in preparing military assistance plans and programs.

Military damage assessment
(DOD) An appraisal of the effects of an attack on a nation's military forces to determine residual military capability and to support planning for recovery and reconstitution.

Military government ordinance
(DOD) An enactment on the authority of a military governor promulgating laws or rules regulating the occupied territory under such control.

Military land transportation resources
(DOD) All military-owned transportation resources, designated for common-user, over the ground, point-to-point use.

Military operations other than war
(DOD) Operations that encompass the use of military capabilities across the range of military operations short of war. These military actions can be applied to complement any combination of the other instruments of national power and occur before, during, and after war.

Military performance specification containers
(DOD) Containers that meet specific written standards. Aviation and Troop Command, US Army, procures military performance specification containers for the Army and will perform like services for other Department of Defense components on request.

Military standard transportation and movement procedures
(DOD) Uniform and standard transportation data, documentation, and control procedures applicable to all cargo movements in the Department of Defense transportation system.

Mine countermeasures
(DOD) All methods for preventing or reducing damage or danger from mines.

Minimum essential equipment
(DOD) That part of authorized allowances of Army equipment, clothing, and supplies needed to preserve the integrity of a unit during movement without regard to the performance of its combat or service mission. Items common within this category will normally be carried by or accompany troops to the port and will be placed aboard the same ships with the troops. As used in movement directives, minimum essential equipment refers to specific items of both organizational and individual clothing and equipment.

Minimum obstruction clearance altitude
(DOD) The specified altitude in effect between radio fixes on very high frequency omnirange airways, off-airway routes, or route segments, which meets obstruction clearance requirements for the entire route segment, and that assures acceptable navigational signal coverage only within 22 miles of a very high frequency omnirange.

See Joint Tactical Air Reconnaissance/Surveillance Mission Report.

Missile assembly-checkout facility
(DOD) A building, van, or other type structure located near the operational missile launching location and designed for the final assembly and checkout of the missile system.

See main operations base.

Mobility system support resources
(DOD) Those resources that are required to: a. complement the airlift and sealift forces, and/or b. perform those work functions directly related to the origination, processing, or termination of a movement requirement.

Moderate risk (nuclear)
(DOD) A degree of risk where anticipated effects are tolerable, or at worst a minor nuisance.

Moving surface ship haven
(DOD) Established by surface ship notices, and will normally be a circle with a specified radius centered on the estimated position of the ship or the guide of a group of ships.

Muzzle velocity
(DOD) The velocity of a projectile with respect to the muzzle at the instant the projectile leaves the weapon.