After years of research (the original patent dates from 2005) the U.S. Army is finally receiving its long sought electronic zoom rifle sight. Called RAZAR (Rapid Adaptive Zoom for Assault Rifles) it allows the user to press a button to get accurate zoom on a target being viewed through the rifle sight. Similar mechanical systems are larger, heavier, require lots more manipulation of the controls and cost more. RAZAR solves all those problems, making all the necessary adjustments in a fraction of a second. This enables long range shooters to hit more targets in rapid succession and get the first shot much more quickly.
Powered by two AA batteries, RAZAR can perform at least 10,000 adjustments one a set of batteries. When the power is gone the sight stays in its last zoom state, so the sight still has some usefulness. It has taken over six years to redesign the sight for ease of manufacturing and reliability in a combat environment. U.S. SOCOM (Special Operations Command) troops are now testing RAZAR in combat and want more of them. The RAZAR technology will eventually be available for civilian uses (binoculars, hinting scopes as well as cameras and microscopes).