a. When artificial illumination is used, the eyes lose most of their night adaptation and off-center vision is no longer useful. Aiming is accomplished as it is during the day. Artificial illumination allows the firer to use the iron sights as he does during the day using the 0-2 rear sight aperture.
b. Engaging targets under artificial illumination allows for better target detection and long-range accuracy than the unassisted technique. When the light is gone, time must be spent in regaining night vision and adaptation. Only when the level drops enough so that the target cannot be seen through the iron sights should the firer resume short-range scanning, looking just over the sights.
c. To preserve night vision while artificial illumination is being used, the soldier closes his firing eye and scans his sector for enemy targets with his nonfiring eye. This allows the soldier to have night vision in at least one eye after the artificial illumination has burned out to keep scanning his sector for enemy targets. However, keeping one eye closed to preserve its night vision results in a drastically altered sense of perception when both eyes are opened following illumination burnout. Repeated dry-fire training and target detection practice are the keys to successful engagement of targets out to 250 meters or more during live-fire under artificial illumination.
7-17. UNASSISTED NIGHT DRY-FIRE AND LIVE-FIRE EXERCISES
Repeated dry-fire training, target detection, and live-fire exercises are the most efficient means to ensure the soldier can successfully engage short-range targets. The soldier must adhere to the following procedures and applications to be effective in combat.
a. Night Dry-Fire Exercises. These exercises are the same as the day dry-fire exercises (load, SPORTS, rapid magazine change, and clear). Repeated training and dry-fire practice are the most effective means available to ensure all soldiers can function efficiently after dark. Dry-fire exercises should be conducted before the first live round is fired.
b. Unassisted Night Live-Fire Exercises. The basic unassisted live-fire exercise allows all soldiers to apply night fire principals and to gain confidence in their ability to effectively engage targets out to 50 meters. Practice and proficiency firing can be conducted on any range equipped with mechanical lifters and muzzle flash simulators (Figure 7-26). The muzzle flash simulator provides the firer with a momentary indication that a target is presenting itself for engagement. Practice can also be accomplished using MILES equipment. When a RETS range is used for this exercise the two 50-meter mechanisms are used. For the unassisted night live-fire exercise, the soldier will perform the following scenario:
(1) Each soldier will be issued two 15-round magazines with tracer and ball combination.
(2) The soldier engages the F-type silhouette target at 50 meters while in the foxhole supported firing position. The soldier uses one magazine of 15 rounds (10 rounds ball; 5 rounds tracer). The soldier will detect and engage 15 target exposures at 50 meters.
(3) The F-type silhouette target is engaged at 50 meters from the prone unsupported position. The soldier uses a second magazine of 15 rounds (10 rounds ball; 5 rounds tracer). The soldier will detect and engage 15 target exposures at 50 meters.
(4) Each soldier must achieve 7 hits out of 30 target exposures.
(5) When the automated range is used, the soldier's performance is recorded in the tower. If automatic scoring is not available, a coach can observe and score the number of target hits the firer achieves using NVDs.
c. Unassisted Night Live-Fire Exercise with Artificial Illumination. The unassisted live-fire exercise with artificial illumination allows all soldiers to apply night fire principals and to gain confidence in their abilities to effectively detect and engage targets out to 150 meters and beyond with artificial illumination using the night record fire scenario:
(1) Each soldier will be issued two 15-round magazines with the appropriate tracer and ball combination.
(2) During night, each soldier will detect and or engage 20 E-type silhouette target exposures from 50 to 250 meters with one magazine of 15 rounds (10 rounds ball; 5 rounds tracer) while in the foxhole supported firing position.
(3) During night, each soldier will detect and or engage 20 E-type silhouette target exposures from 50 to 250 meters with the second magazine of 15 rounds (10 rounds ball; 5 rounds tracer) while in the prone unsupported firing position.
(4) Each soldier must achieve 15 hits out of 40 target exposures with only 30 rounds.
(5) It is important for the soldier to understand that all of the exposed targets do not have to be engaged by fire. The soldier may hone his target detection skills on the distant targets and engage them only when he is confident of achieving a hit. This allows the soldier to understand his limitations, his skill level, and skills that he needs to work on to improve his nighttime marksmanship ability. (Refer to Appendix F for more information on the night record fire table.)
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