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Archive for February, 2018

Crimson Trace Reveals BOGO Program

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

(Wilsonville, OR)— Crimson Trace®, recognized as America’s top brand of laser sights, today announced that customers who purchase any new Crimson Trace laser sight or light through any sales channel between March 1 and April 30, 2018 will be eligible to receive a free Rail Master®–the Rail Master CMR-201 red laser sight in accordance with the terms and conditions of the program. The new Buy One/Get One (BOGO) program is a great bargain available to shoppers everywhere, and participation is easy.


Crimson Trace’s Rail Master CMR-201 red laser sight is one of the company’s most popular products and has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $159. A battery for operation, an owner’s manual, and an adjustment tool are included with the packaging. Purchasers simply complete and submit the proof of purchase forms found at directly to Crimson Trace Corporation.  Once it verifies that purchasing conditions have been met, Crimson Trace will ship the complimentary Rail Master CMR-201 laser sight directly to the purchaser.

Additional details on the terms and conditions of this Buy One/Get One promotion are available at Crimson Trace dealers across America and on the company’s website at  This BOGO offer excludes Crimson Trace laser sights preinstalled on firearms by manufacturers.

The Rail Master CMR-201 laser sight is designed for universal fit onto pistols and long guns with modern accessory rails, including Weaver and Picatinny rails. The compact CMR-201 laser sight utilizes a red diode, features Crimson Trace’s award winning Instant Activation™ tap-on/tap-off activation, and can be easily mounted and adjusted for windage and elevation as needed. The laser sight is lightweight and operates for up to four hours on the provided battery.  Crimson Trace manufactures five additional Rail Master laser sights, including two with green laser diodes and two Rail Master® Pro models with a laser sight (red or green diodes) and white LED light.

Crimson Trace leads the laser sight accessory category by providing more than 300 products through 2,500+ dealers across America. Those dealers include gun stores, ranges, big box outlets and numerous on-line retailers. Crimson Trace products can be easily installed without requiring modification of the firearm —or special gunsmith skills. For more information on Crimson Trace products and dealer locations, and to obtain a free copy of the company’s catalog, visit or call 800-442-2406.

Peak Nano Optics Closes Minority Investment with L3 Technologies

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Coppell, Texas – Peak Nano Optics closed a significant minority investment on February 6, with the signing of an equity and development package with L3 Technologies (NYSE:LLL) as part of a broader expansion plan and program. Details and terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The L3 Technologies investment will accelerate breakthroughs for military and commercial optics applications, with the potential for new product launches as early as 2019. Overall, this latest round of investments will enable Peak Nano Optics to significantly expand its manufacturing efforts.

“We’re thrilled to have L3 as both an equity and development partner,” said Jim Welsh, Chief Executive Officer for Peak Nano. “L3 operates as an industry leader in many of the markets where our lens technology makes a tremendous impact on system-level performance, which creates new opportunities for our technology. This transaction allows us to dramatically accelerate our efforts in much larger adjacent markets, such as virtual reality, where we expect to shape the next generation of optical platform solutions.”

“L3’s business culture is to target, acquire, and partner with discriminating technologies and capabilities that revolutionize our customers’ products and solutions while making our world a safer place,” said Jeff Miller, L3’s Senior Vice President and President of its Sensor Systems business segment. “In Peak Nano Optics, we quickly saw the potential for GRIN lens technology, not only in our current markets, but also in its ability to be transformative in a broad range of emerging systems, such as virtual and augmented realities, and the commercial space.”

For Peak Nano, the Series B funding is a validation of the company’s process.

“This is the first step in the Peak Nano process, which begins with the identification of commercial opportunities for emerging nanotechnologies and culminates in a real-world consumer product,” said Chad Lewis, President and Chief Operating Officer for Peak Nano. “Taking innovation from the point of discovery and scaling it up to meet the demands of the consuming public is at our core.”

The company has spent the last year designing an advanced automated line with integrated robotics that will come on line this summer, greatly expanding production scalability. This round of funding will also enable Peak Nano to advance its offerings in virtual and augmented realities as well as make new advancements in biomedical technology.

Based in Coppell, Texas, Peak Nano Optics has developed commercial scale nanolayered gradient index (GRIN) lens technology that is poised to change the optics world.

For more information, please visit

US Army Rapid Equipping Force Update

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Although yesterday was Rapid Equipping Force Director, Colonel Lanier Ward’s last day on the job, he invited members of the defense press to visit the organization and learn about their latest activities.

For those of you unfamiliar, this Army unit was stood up in 2002. The REF reports directly to the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, providing rapid material solutions to Soldiers for urgent combat requirements by harnessing current and emerging technologies.

The organization has met challenges as diverse as improving force protection, providing ISR in austere locations, improving operational energy sources and enhancing communications. The REF maintains a forward presence in Iraq, Afghanistan and Kuwait and routinely coordinates with forces deployed globally.

COL Ward started out talking about the term “Rapid”. Lots of new organizations are being formed within DoD and are being referred to as “Rapid”. The REF has been doing it for quite some time now and seem to have the process down. However, COL Ward reminded us that although they work with all of the Army Service Component Commands, the REF’s focus is fairly narrow; specifically on small unit solutions. He related “we are about the now, and buy the Army time.”

Although they’ve downsized about one-third in recent years, the organization remains robust. It is currently 140 personnel including 30 military and 21 Department of the Army Civilians. The rest of the REF’s strength comes from a dedicated contractor force.

When asked how the REF differs from a PM shop, COL Ward replied “I’m an operator; I came in here without a clue how acquisition works. I look at everything through the prism of how Operations work.” He went on, “I’m more operationally focused, because I’m about the now.” While he might be a stranger to the Acquisition process, COL Ward and his predecessors understand Operations. Consequently, they’ve been given authority by the Army’s G3/5/7 to validate requirements from the field.

Unfortunately, with that Operations background comes some misperception from those outside the organization. One misunderstanding COL Ward wanted to address is that the REF is not strictly Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) focused. Instead, they rely heavily upon Government Off The Shelf (GOTS), which they may employ in new ways, or are not yet ready for full fielding, due to funding. This tactic leverages money that’s already been spent, but also provides feedback on developmental systems, leading to improvements based on operational use. The reality is that the REF goes where the solutions are. They partner with Industry, Academia, and Government entities to provide innovative solutions to urgent needs.

One of the REF’s biggest successes is the Expeditionary Lab which offers design and limited production capability in a deployed environment. The ExLab is equipped with design software, 3D printers and other limited metal bending capability. A Soldier can show up at the ExLab, identify a problem, and the REF team designs and produces prototype solutions right there on site. Currently, one ExLab is operational in Afghanistan, while the other is mothballed in Kuwait. When asked why one was out of service, COL Ward replied, “It works best when it has the Soldier footprint around it.” Based on the situation in Iraq, they closed that one, at least for now.

The REF focuses on capability gaps. Any Soldier can submit a 10-liner, which is a message used to identify a capability gap. The REF follows up with the submitter’s chain of command to ensure the requirement is valid and not a case of a Soldier trying to get some shiny new kit he saw on SSD. The majority of 10-liners focus on Force Protection, Intelligence and Movement and Maneuver. Naturally, the vast majority originate from the CENTCOM AOR. Although they come from all levels of command, COL Ward said that he had denied a 10-liner from a Division commander. “I can’t fix all of the Army’s shortfalls.”

The REF’s military personnel include Outreach & Assessment NCOs. We met with three of them, SFC Rahamane Cisse, SFC Mark Walker Jr., and SSG Duryea Williams who walked is through several C-UAS and EW technologies. At home station, they conduct assessments of candidate technologies and in the field, they work with their deployed customers to provide required capabilities.

The REF uses Burnoff events to evaluate commercial capabilities for certain problem sets. “We see if your dog can hunt. If it can, maybe I’ve got a solution I can give to Soldiers,” stated COL Ward. Additionally, the REF provides the safety confirmation. In some cases, that safety confirmation will include cautions that the material must be used within certain parameters. That’s another reason they keep up with the capability for up to two years, to ensure information like that is passed from one deployed unit, to the next.

Counter-UAS is a major focus, answering Joint Urgent Operational Needs Statements from Iraq, to offer the best, readily available capabilities. However, these are interim steps, not final solutions. COL Ward doesn’t look at pieces of gear as his “items” the way a traditional PM would mentioning “we field, not equip.” Sometimes they have to remind industry. He said, “We’ve had to go back and spank companies on occasion,” after they’ve sold something to the REF and then advertised they are providing the Army’s solution.

The REF is linked in very tight with JIDO on the C-UAS front. COL Ward told us that they are good at looking at emerging capabilities, “We don’t do anything alone. We don’t have the capacity and I’d be fooling myself.”

While the UAS threat continues to evolve, the REF continues to work on solutions. For instance, their efforts have evolved from just dismounted small tactical units to providing input to support FOBs. The concept of “defense in depth” requires multiple capabilities to counter the various UAS threats. There isn’t just one UAS, meaning there must be multiple counters. They are also working with other agencies as part of a greater whole. For example, PM C-RAM is office of primary responsibility to support all of C-UAS for CENTCOM. Despite their extensive work, COL Ward sees an eventual end to the REF’s C-UAS efforts.

REF is also working with the Army’s Rapid Capabilities Office on the Electronic Warfare problem set. Their initial EW capability deliverable was a manpack system based on GOTS equipment such as C-IED equipment, with some system integration and capability enhancement. Not only does it offer an immediate capability, it also informs future requirements. They are now taking it one step further by increasing capability with the EW Tactical Vehicle capability which required additional, off-site system integration. They’ll hold a mobile EW event in March.


RCO looks at problems from one to five years out, while the REF is much closer, at zero to two years. In fact, REF’s goal is to put a capability into the Soldier’s hand within 180 days. Their two year window is because units rotate. The REF prepares units due to rotate so they can fall in on equipment they’ve already fielded.

Partnering with the Asymmetric Warfare Group, REF is also looking at a Subterranean capability which was most recently evaluated in Indiana. However, they initially went to nearby Quantico to work with the FBI, leveraging lessons learned from law enforcement. Specifically, they’ve evaluated command and control, breaching, power generation, and self-contained breathing apparatus. However, they haven’t fielded any equipment. Instead, they’ve got a menu of capabilities they can provide to the warfighter in the event they are needed.

They recently assisted in fielding equipment for 1st Security Force Assistance Brigade including comms and fire support. COL Ward expects to help this new unit out even more. For instance, they’ve been looking at a tethered ISR capability for use by SFAB and others. One solution is a tethered copter which answers the need for extended duration.

The REF isn’t going away. It is very relevant. The REF is a modular organization within TRADOC, working on Army problems. Focusing on the now, REF has become an enduring capability, unlike similar, ad-hoc organizations stood up during previous conflicts which were disbanded after a short period of time. In fact, COL Ward related that the REF is finally going to move out of the trailers they started in 16 years ago. As a permanent part of the Army, it’s about time they move to a permanent home.

Applications Now Open for 2018 SOFIC Innovation Showcase

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

NDIA is offering entrepreneurs the opportunity to present their innovative products, ideas, and services at the 2018 SOFIC Innovation Showcase. Selected companies will be given 10 minutes of exclusive time to showcase their innovation to members of the SOF community. This is an exceptional opportunity to present your products and services to this exclusive community.

Do you have the innovation that SOF is looking for? If so, act now to be considered for this limited opportunity. Visit and submit a 2018 SOFIC Innovation Showcase official application.

All applications must be received by March 16. Companies will be selected by Monday, April 2, 2018 to participate in the 2018 SOFIC Innovation Showcase.

Questions? Please contact Reneé Despot at [email protected].

High Angle Solutions – Lifesystems Heatshield Blanket

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

UK company Lifesystems has introduced a new Heatshield Blanket to their Outdoor Survival range and with a weight of less than 100g, there’s no excuse not to carry one in your backpack when exploring the great outdoors.


Made from a heat-reflective, metalised low density polyethylene, the advanced Headshield Blankets are capable of retaining 90% of your radiated body heat. The blanket’s wind and waterproof material also helps to reduce wind-chill and can therefore play a crucial role in keeping you warm if you become injured or lost on the hill. The durable Heatshield Blankets are tear-resistant, meaning you can easily reuse them time and time again, and each blanket is supplied with a bag to keep it safe inside your rucksack.

The exterior of the Heatshield Blanket is a highly visible, safety orange that makes it easy for help to spot you during an emergency situation. For even greater practicality, the outer surface of the blanket is also radar reflective, making it much easier for emergency services to locate you when you’re far away from the beaten track. Crucial safety information is printed directly onto the outside of the blanket, helping you to take Lifesystems’ extensive survival knowledge out on your adventures with you.

Available in both single and double versions, the Heatshield Blanket is particularly useful for situations where someone has fallen and you can’t risk moving them. By tucking the Heatshield Blanket around the injured individual, you can help them retain crucial body heat, reducing the risk of hypothermia – a real, year-round threat on the British hills. Before you head out onto the trail, make sure that not only have you prepared for the unexpected with your kit, but you are also aware of the early symptoms of hypothermia so you can deal with situations before they arise.

Slurred speech and mumbling
Shallow breathing
A lack of coordination
Drowsiness or confusion

Contact [email protected] for more information (Minimum Order Quantities apply)

High Angle Solutions is a weekly series of articles focusing on military mountaineering solutions. It’s brought to you by UK-based , in conjunction with several other brands, both here in the US and abroad.

Kit Badger – Catharsis, Divorce and the Range

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Kit Badger thought this might be of interest to some of SSD’s readers. I know I’ve been divorced a time or two.

Read the full post here.

83rd ERQS Pararescuemen Conduct Weapons Training in Afghanistan

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018
U.S. Air Force Pararescuemen assigned to the 83rd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron, 455th Expeditionary Wing, Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan, conduct weapons training Feb. 21, 2018. Pararescuemen conduct training on all aspects of combat, medical procedures and search and rescue tactics to hone their skills, providing the highest level of tactical capabilities to combatant commanders. (U.S. Air Force Video by SrA Nathaniel Stout)

Savage Unveils Hard-Hitting, Custom-Fitting Model 110 Hunter

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

WESTFIELD, Massachusetts – February 26, 2018 – Built for any hunt, and any hunter, the accurate, hard-hitting new Savage Model 110 Hunter allows shooters to enjoy a custom fit, reliable performance and flawless accuracy. Shipments of these firearms are currently being delivered to dealers.

The Model 110 Hunter’s revolutionary AccuFit system makes it easy for hunters to customize the length-of-pull and comb height for a personalized fit, while the user-adjustable AccuTrigger offers a crisp, clean pull.

Together with the AccuStock, which secures the action three- dimensionally along its entire length, the Model 110 Hunter provides the fit and function of a custom rifle—right out of the box. Plus, the matte black barrel’s button rifling provides tag-filling accuracy whether the target is antelope, elk or anything in between.

Features & Benefits

• AccuFitt system lets shooters quickly adjust comb height and length-of-pull

• User-adjustable AccuTrigger

• AccuStock rail system secures the action three-dimensionally along its entire length

• Gray synthetic stock

• Matte black button-rifled barrel

• Detachable box magazine

• Soft grip overmold fore-end and pistol grip surfaces

• New Model 110 design and ergonomics

• Drilled and tapped for scope mounts

Part No. / Description / MSRP

57061 / 223 Rem., 22-inch barrel / $749

57062 / 204 Ruger, 22-inch barrel / $749

57060 / 22-250 Rem., 22-inch barrel / $749

57063 / 243 Win., 22-inch barrel / $749

57064 / 7mm-08 Rem., 22-inch barrel / $749

57065 / 308 Win., 22-inch barrel / $749

57038 / 25-06 Rem., 22-inch barrel / $749

57039 / 270 Win. 22-inch barrel / $749

57040 / 30-06 Sprg., 22-inch barrel / $749

57041 / 7mm Rem. Mag., 24-inch barrel / $749

57042 / 300 Win. Mag., 24-inch barrel / $749

57145 / 280 Ackley Improved, 22-inch barrel / $749

Savage is a brand of Vista Outdoor Inc., an outdoor sports and recreation company. To learn more about Savage, visit