Army Wants to Buy Compact, Semi-Auto Sniper Rifles


COMPACTSDM The U.S. Army has invited gun makers compete for the chance to build a compact version of the service's M110 Semi Automatic Sniper System.

The service released a formal request for proposal which could lead to a contract award of $44.5 million to buy about 3,600 Compact Semi-Automatic Sniper Systems, or CSASS. Gun makers have until Oct. 10 to submit proposals.

Here’s a look at what the Army wants:

-- All external and visible surfaces shall be of a rough, dull, non-reflective Flat Dark Earth.

-- The unloaded rifle with forward rails for concurrent mounting of required accessories but without suppressor, magazines, accessories, and/or optics shall weigh no more than 9.0 pounds.

-- The maximum overall assembled length of the rifle shall be not greater than 36 inches with the stock at its shortest position and no sound suppressor mounted. The stock shall be in the unfolded position if a folding stock is present. The length of the barrel shall be no less than 16 inches.

-- The stock of the rifle shall be adjustable for length-of-pull. The length of pull in the shortest configuration shall be no greater than 12 inches. The length of pull in the longest configuration shall be no less than 16 inches. The minimum travel of the stock adjustment shall be no less than 4 inches.

-- The rifle shall incorporate a muzzle brake or combination flash hider/muzzle brake.

"Since its initial fielding in 2007, the M110 has provided Army snipers with a very reliable and effective anti-personnel sniping capability. However, advances in warfighting technology have promoted the need for increased sniping capabilities to counter constantly changing threats particularly in urban environments and at extended ranges. As a result, the CSASS initiative evolved directly from Operational Needs Statements submitted by deployed units and sniper feedback. The CSASS capabilities and features have been identified from sniper inputs during weapon Integrated Product Team meetings, conferences, observations and interviews with conventional Army, Special Operations, NATO/allies snipers and Sniper School instructors, according to the June 12 solicitation posted on

The Army adopted the M110 in 2005. Made by Knight’s Armament Company, it’s chambered for 7.62mm, weighs about 15 pounds and measures about 46 inches when fitted with its suppressor.

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