November 25, 2014 0:00

// Pneumatic weapons

Sights are specially designed devices that are used to aim weapons at the target of destruction. The history of the development of sights has many centuries, ranging from the simplest mechanical structures to high-tech laser and infrared devices. Modern sights allow you to aim the weapon at the target in almost any visibility conditions and from a long distance.

The very first type of sight that was used by a person was a ring sight. They were supplied with crossbows and crossbows in the Middle Ages. They were most suitable for installation on smoothbore rifles, lengthened the aiming line twice. With the development of science and technology, telescopic, dioptric, laser and other types of devices appeared.  

Collimator sights

The principle of operation of a collimator sight (for example, Hawke RD 1x30M WP 9-11 mm) is based on the use of the principle of collimation of light, that is, obtaining a parallel beam of rays corresponding to remote objects that are targeted. The collimator is presented in the form of a long-focus lens with an installed brand, which is illuminated by a special device. In collimator sights on small arms, the mark in the form of a diaphragm forms a luminous aiming point. Sights of this type are open and closed. In closed, all elements are located along the optical axis and slightly limit the observation area, and in open, the collimator is removed from the shooter’s field of view. Collimator sights are characterized by a single magnification and unlimited pupil removal. Sights are made with a variable value of the aiming point, which is affected by the size of the target and the distance to it. The most modern models of collimator sights (for example, the Aimpoint Micro H-1 2MOA Weaver collimator sight, the Aimpoint Comp C3 2 MOA 11421 collimator sight) use systems that provide up to ten degrees of change in the brightness of the aiming point, have an operating temperature range of -30° – +60°C, have waterproof properties and other improved characteristics.

Optical night sights

The basis of most night vision devices and optical night sights are a photomultiplier and a “canvas glass”, which were invented abroad in the 30s of the last century. In 1945, American army soldiers used electronic devices for the first time in battles on the island of Okinawa in Japan, which made it possible to conduct successful sniper battles at night. The first IR illuminators were made in the form of spotlights from high-pressure xenon lamps with a wavelength of 0.7 – 1.2 mm. The main disadvantage of HDPE with this type of illumination is that they are easily detected by the enemy using devices of the same type and are quickly destroyed.

Currently, night vision sights are classified by generation of release. The first of them were with electron-optical converters. Sometimes, to increase power, a design of several converters was assembled, but they were soon replaced by second-generation devices due to their dimensions. The new devices differ from their predecessors in greater picture clarity and range, work at a light level equal to the starry sky with light clouds. The modern generation of optical night sights is characterized by high accuracy and technology, they can work in extremely low light conditions, equal to the illumination of the sky completely covered with clouds. The image is distinguished by clarity and contrast, as, for example, in the Dipol D161 Pro 4x sight, the Dipol D241H sight (black and white spectrum) 3.7x with an IR illuminator under the side bar of the AK.   

Laser designators (rangefinders)

Laser target taps became widely used after the discovery of the laser beam. The principle of operation of such a sight is based on the fact that a visible-range laser emitter is attached to the weapon, projecting a luminous dot onto the target. By adjusting the laser beam, you can adjust the diameter of the point in accordance with the dispersion of bullets and assess the reliability of hitting the target. Such pointers are used at a distance of more than 500 m, but in bright daylight the point is poorly distinguishable, which is considered their disadvantage. Nevertheless, a high effect is already observed in cloudy weather during the day, in evening lighting, at dusk and at night. There are sensors whose radiation is in both the visible and invisible range for humans. In addition, thanks to modern developments, the dimensions of laser pointers have been so reduced that they can easily be placed not only on the weapon itself, but also inside it along with power sources.  

Optical (telescopic) sights

Back in the 17th century, the first attempts were made abroad to apply the telescope to firearms, and the first successful experiments were conducted by Americans in the 1800s. These were the famous “Kuntuk rifles” on smoky powder. In the North American War of 1861, optical rifles passed the first combat tests, and by the end of the 19th century they had reached a fairly high level of perfection. In 1880, August Fiedler created and patented a modern type of optical sight. Optics are constantly being improved, acquiring greater accuracy and smaller dimensions (for example, the Air Precision Premium 4-16x56ID sight, the Nikko Stirling DIAMOND 3-12×56 30mm sight, etc.).

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