Had a quick search, couldn't find it posted; UK assault rifle to receive lighter, improved sight Andrew White Jane's Land Forces Reporter London The UK armed forces' L85A2 (SA80A2) assault rifle is to undergo another transformation as the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) starts negotiations to replace the L9A1 weapon sight. The UK MoD's Future Infantry Soldier Technology (FIST) programme office wants an "improved and lighter" system to replace the United Scientific Instruments L9A1 Sight Unit Small Arms Trilux (SUSAT), currently in use with the SA80A2. Industry sources said the UK MoD favours the Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight (ACOG) TA31RCO 4 x 32 sight, produced by US aiming systems specialist Trijicon. The deal could have a potential value of up to GBP200 million (USD357.8 million). In 2000, the SUSAT was exempt from arms specialist Heckler & Koch's (H&K's) GBP92 million revamp of the SA80. The UK MoD contracted H&K to modify some 200,000 SA80 assault rifles and L86 Light Support weapons, with improvements including a new hammer, cocking handle, gas plug and firing pin. Monthly deliveries to the UK MoD of 4,000 SA80A2s started in December 2001 and the contract is due for completion 2006. Trijicon's Military Division manager, Shaun Rategan, said: "We cannot comment on quantities or type. The FIST programme has tested and evaluated our ACOG and conveyed an interest in future business." ACOG is currently favoured by the US Special Operations Command, including Green Berets, US Navy sea, air and land (SEAL) commandos and US Army Rangers as well as the UK's special forces. Designed for use with the M16 series of assault rifles, it is seen as a very robust sight despite being 137 g lighter than the 417 g SUSAT. Other features include dual illustrated reticle, enhanced adjuster caps and chevron reticle and crosshair. A deal could also include the purchase of simple scissor-action mounts. Since H&K's improvement programme, the SA80A2 has had "isolated difficulties", according to a UK National Audit Office report in December 2003, although post-operational reports indicated a general acceptance that the SA80A2 is effective and reliable. In 2005, Trijicon won a USD660 million contract to provide Rifle Combat Optics (RCO), a modified version of the ACOG, for the US Marine Corps' M16 assault rifles. The deal initially comprised 104,000 scopes, worth USD610 each, with an additional option for the US government to buy a maximum of 800,000 RCO scopes over the five-year contract period.