US arms its Marines with new bolt-action Barrett Mk22 sniper rifles

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WASHINGTON — Washington will arm its Marines with new Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 sniper rifles. They will replace the M40A6 and Mk13 Mod 7. The Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 is a long-range bolt-action rifle. Similar action was expected after tests of the Mk22 Mod 0 were conducted in late May.

Photo credit: USMC

Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 can be configured for use in three types of caliber – .338 Norma Magnum, .300 NM, or 7.62×51 mm. The Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 is considered a multi-caliber platform and uses a 10-round removable magazine. Changing to a new sniper rifle means that the US Marines will also change the scope used. Up until now, they have been working with a 5×25 optic on their M40A6 and Mk13 Mod 7. The magnification has now changed as along with the Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 infantrymen will be aiming with the 7×35 Precision Day Optic.

The decision to acquire the Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 was no accident. Barrett Firearms won a contract from the US government to supply approximately 2,800 PSRs to the military. This happened last year. This year, the US Army continued its collaboration with Barrett Firearms by ordering an additional 485 MK22 Precision Sniper Rifles [PSR] for close combat. That is the third consecutive order between the Pentagon and Barrett Firearms

The tests in late May were conducted at the Marine Corps base in Quantico. Sniper instructors were invited to test the Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 and the new optics for it. The instructors were from three Sea Scout schools. Although the US Marine Corps has already decided on the new sniper rifle, its tests will continue until the end of the year.

Until now, the tests involved evaluating the behavior of the barrels and the three different calibers. The speed of the bullet fired from the rifle was also measured. Experts say the Barrett Mk22 Mod 0 has a longer range than the M40A6 and Mk13 Mod 7 and a smaller logistical footprint. The latter also reduces the number of rifles in Marine’s inventory – from four to three. That is in different conditions, the sniper will simply have to change barrels instead of carrying an additional weapon.

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