The Sig biofeedback scope

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • Biofeedback scope keeps you on target
  • Vibration warns when you’re off target
  • The point
  • The challenges
  • In the mount
  • Similar system used for blind marksmen
  • Functions
  • Future enhancements
  • The name
  • Pyramyd Air
  • Summary

Biofeedback scope keeps you on target

Hunters often do not have a clear picture of their quarry through the scope. A deer will hide behind branches and a squirrel may only be partially visible. A new scope may help in situations like this.

Vibration warns when you’re off target

This new scope has been developed by Sig Sauer, as an adjunct of their very popular Electro-Optic BDX ranging scope. An engineer at Sig who also hunts knew that the software and electronics already packaged in the BDX scope could be augmented to add this helpful feature of alerting the shooter when the scope was straying off-target.

BDX scope
Sig’s excellent BDX scope automatic ranging system was the starting point for the new biofeedback scope.

How it works is the shooter puts the illuminated dot, or pip, as they refer to it, on the desired target and initializes the system with the press of a button. After that, if the scope senses a stray away from those X,Y, Z coordinates, it vibrates silently. There are three amounts of deviation that produce signals of different frequencies. The first deviation range is 1/8 to 1/4 mil and produces the fastest vibration. The second deviation range runs from 1/4 to 1/2 mil and produces a vibration of medium frequency. The final range is 1/2 to 1 mil and produces the lowest frequency of all.

The point

The point of this is to alert the hunter that he’s no longer on his initial aim point, so he can adjust. If the target moves, the system can be reset quickly with minimal inconvenience. The only control is a single smart button that is best positioned on the forearm of the stock for the index finger of the off hand to control all scope functions.

The challenges

To make this system work Sig had to modify some of the BDX hardware, but much of what was required was already in place. The software additions were small and simple to create. But the bio-feedback mechanism was the real challenge. Getting a vibrator to fit inside a scope tube proved next to impossible, and that was the big problem the engineer solved.

In the mount

He put the vibration mechanism in the scope mount, rather than inside the scope tube, itself. That allowed him a larger envelope to work with. The vibrator comes from a popular video game controller and didn’t need any physical modification. Sig told me that once they knew what they wanted to do, their biggest challenge was locating the Chinese company that made the vibrator, so they didn’t have to purchase it from the video game manufacturer.

Similar system used for blind marksmen

Back in 2009 I reported on a similar system that is used by blind marksmen. I saw it at the 2009 NRA Annual Meetings and Exhibits. Look at the fourth photo down to see what it looks like and read a little about how it works. That system is fine for target shooting, but because it signals with sound, the shooter has to wear headphones and the quarry could also be alerted. The Sig system is completely silent.

Functions

The new scope does several things for the shooter. First it vibrates when you stray from the initial target that you indicated. As you get farther off target the vibrations slow down, which produces an automatic correction response that you don’t have to think about.

Sig tested the new scope against some scopes that did not produce biofeedback and found that the same shooters were decreasing the size of their 5-shot groups by 15 to as much as 30 percent. In other words — the new scope gave them greater precision. Of course the obvious thing is the scope must be exactly on target when the system, is engaged — otherwise you’re tracking a miss!

Sig also tested this with shooters who had never before fired a weapon. Thay learned that this system reduces the time to learn how to use a scope by a factor of five! The U.S. Army is interested in the system for that reason. And, an unspecified U.S. government agency has purchased 10 of the new scopes for their snipers to use.

Future enhancements

Sig told me that with the precise satellite geolocation data that’s available to the government, the system might be able to allow the shooter to acquire a target and then move from the shooting position and reacquire the target from somewhere else, as long as the target remains stationary. This would allow seemingly impossible shots such as shooting through walls! Such scopes would probably not be available to the public, but the military and perhaps law enforcement would certainly use them!

The name

The name for this new scope remains to be selected. The Smash is currently the favorite, in honor of the optics group’s Whiskey designator.

Pyramyd Air

Pyramyd Air will stock the new scope, which they anticipate being available by the first of May. They plan an introductory promotion for the new scope to showcase their new hunting map.

Summary

Technology continues to advance at an amazing pace. Sig also hinted at a future BDX modification that involves thermal imaging and a powerful gyroscope to assist night hunters in bagging their quarry of wild hogs by actually pushing the rifle onto the target for the shooter. We will see!

30 thoughts on “The Sig biofeedback scope

  1. I know it’s April Fool’s, but with all the crap manufacturers are coming out with to take shooter skill out of the equation, something like this really wouldn’t surprise me!


  2. BB
    The hunting map link is cool. Nice work with today’s blog and PA’s hunting map link. Too bad no new mrkll edible hunting pellets to go along with it all. 😉





      • If it is, it’s been running for a few years, and I actually saw a demonstration at a range outside of Memphis.

        It’s neat , but didn’t get a chance to shoot it.

        It didn’t have any bio feedback, just an LED that would light up when your sights were lined up with what the system had calculated for a shooting solution to the target.


  3. Or,….. the April Fool’s joke is,……. there is no April Fool’s joke?

    Nothing surprises me anymore and I am sure that anyone that is familiar with the latest in high tech military grade stuff (not me) is even less surprised.

    Good Day to one and all,……. Chris



    • B.B.,
      Ditto what RidgeRunner said; actually, you are getting too good at this stuff, scary good at it!
      But yes, the map is great. =>
      Happy April Fool’s Day to you,
      dave


  4. They forgot to mention that if you stay in the prone position too long gophers will start to pop up to investigate the vibrations. Also you need to have special straps on your eye glasses and avoid clinching your teeth.




      • BB
        Possible yes.

        Desirable. No.

        I want to shoot the gun. Not it shoot for me. Sounds like those cars that will drive you instead of you driving the car.

        Remember the GTO at the valet lot. That’s what I’m talking about. Got to drive it. Not ride it.


      • B.B.,

        I absolutely think some of the capabilities are possible. The desirable part of your response however, gives me pause. If it means far more of our troops come home from battle; I’m all for it. If it means occasional hunters will leave far fewer wounded animals to die slow deaths in the woods and fields; I’m all for it. If it means BAD characters get hold of it; I’m NOT for it! If it means new shooters will be able to score nothing but10X without learning much of anything about MARKSMANSHIP; IM NOT for it! On the whole I realize I’m really NOT for it.

        “The name
        The name for this new scope remains to be selected. The Smash is currently the favorite, in honor of the optics group’s Whiskey designator.” as in Sour Mash? Lol!

        The Pyramid Air Hunting Map has already saved us from illegal hunting practices! Mrs. shootski and I were going to use my DAQ 58 Shortrifle and DAQ 58 OUTLAW Pistol to hunt for the Creature from our new EPIC 18X Double kayak on Strawberry Reservoir.

        From the Hunting Map for UTAH: “Creature from the Black Lagoon Shore line hunting by air pistol or air rifle only.”

        We will, from now on, only hunt from the shoreline until UTAH DNR becomes more enlightened about the wonders of Airgun hunting from kayaks!

        Thank you Pyramid Air!

        shootski


  5. B.B.,

    You got me on this one 🙂 Not thinking about it being “April Fools Day”. But the way technology is advancing, this is not too far fetched. We already have smart missiles so why not airguns that can shoot around corners and smart scopes that lock onto the target? 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Geo



  6. Ok, you got me this time. Second time I got fooled. First time was the one about the PA brand air gun that was a springer with zero recoil, not heavy, cheap priced and was a big bore? LOL. I too forgot what the date was today.

    Doc


  7. B.B.

    Better be careful about what you wish for! Next week we could end up with a scope that has two arms, two hands, and it will be holding a roll of pink toilet paper with purple polkadots. A special add on LED screen will tell you which log to navigate to so you can bury the evidence. With such a wonderful engineering advancement on hand I bet several state DNR’s will rush through special legislation to make its use mandatory. Just some food for thought on AFD.

    Have a good one!

    Bob F


  8. I think it’s wonderful…..Even the Agnostics have their holiday….Psalm 14:1.
    It’s good to support their day of remembrance.
    Pyramyd Air has gifts for ALL occasions . Thanks BB


Leave a Reply