Army Seeks Optic for Next-Gen Squad Weapon.

Author:Lee, Connie

* HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- The Army is looking to pair the next-generation squad weapon with a new optic to boost soldiers' accuracy.

The new optics are expected to help troops improve their accuracy when firing the new weapon, said Doug Tamilio, director of the Combat Capabilities Development Command Soldier Center.

"This is fire control," he said. "If you think about the ability of a soldier to get a first round on target, it's critical. And this device, coupled with that weapon system, will allow them to do that."

The next-gen squad weapon is intended to replace the service's M4 carbine and M249 squad automatic weapon. The Army chose Textron System's AAI Corporation; FN America LLC, which is producing two rifles; General Dynamics-OTS Inc.; PCP Tactical LLC; and Sig Sauer Inc. to develop prototype rifles. Plans also include developing a new 6.8 mm round to improve warfighters' performance in close- and long-range fights.

The service wants a technology readiness level 6 optic with a digital camera, advanced target recognition and tracking algorithms, Tamilio said at the Association of the United States Army's Global Force Symposium in Huntsville, Alabama. TRL 6 systems have a representative model or prototype ready for testing in a relevant environment.

"We're looking at a significant...

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