AN/PVS-30 Clip-On Night Vision Sight

In this article we’re going to take a close look at the AN/PVS-30 Clip-on Sniper Night Sight (COSNS) as used by the U.S. Army and other armed forces.

AN/PVS-30 Clip On Night Vision Sight
The AN/PVS-30 is a Clip On Night Vision Sight – it mounts in-line with an existing telescopic sight – and provides night and low-light vision. (Photo by Program Executive Office Soldier)

A Night Vision Scope let’s you see in the dark – and in particular accurately aim a weapon in the darkness.

Here’s the gear we’re going to review:

Knight's Armament AN/PVS-30 Night Vision Sight Knight's Armament makes the AN/PVS-30 Night Vision Sight commercially available. It is ITAR restricted - can't be exported out of the US.

These types of sights use Image Intensification (II or I2) technology to amplify any available ambient light.

What sort of light?

Anything really – moonlight, starlight – even in partially overcast skies.

View through the AN/PVS-30 Night Vision Scope
View through the AN/PVS-30 Night Vision Sight

As such, these are passive night vision devices.

The AN/PVS-30 and it’s kind don’t project any sort of signal or energy that your opponent can zero in on.

With that said, these don’t work in total darkness either.

Or during the day.

(For those purposes a thermal weapon sight like the AN/PAS-13 is more versatile.

Let’s talk about the “Clip-on” aspect to this sight.

AN/PVS-30 on a sniper rifle
Here the AN/PVS-30 is mounted in-line with a telescopic sight on a sniper rifle. (Photo by Program Executive Office Soldier)

This sight is meant to be mounted in-line with the existing day optic sight on a rifle.

A variable gain Image Intensification Tube (IIT) is used – and that means it can be adjusted depending on the ambient light levels.

This is Gen III night vision technology – some of the most advanced available.

Does the scope look big? It is – it weights 2.9 lbs, but it will run for 24 hours on a single DL 123 battery.

How well does it work?

When used in conjunction with the M110 and M2010 day optic sight, it provides for personnel-sized target recognition at quarter moon illumination in clear air to a range of 600 meters.

What is the AN/PVS-30 used with? The M110 Semi-Automatic Sniper System is the most obvious choice.

M110 Semi-Automatic Sniper System (SASS)
The M110 Semi-Automatic Sniper System (M110 SASS) is an American semi-automatic sniper rifle/designated marksman rifle that is chambered for the 7.62×51mm NATO round. It was developed by U.S. firearm manufacturer Knight’s Armament Company.
(Photo by Photo by Thomas Alvarez, Idaho Army National Guard)

The AN/PVS-30 is mounted on any MIL-STD-1913 “picatinny” rail for quick and easy mounting to or dismounting from the weapon.

The clip on sight does not affect the zero of the day optical sight.

AN/PVS-30 Night Vision Scope
Another view of the AN/PVS-30 Night Vision Sight. (Photo by Program Executive Office Soldier)

Here the AN/PVS-30 looks to be used in conjunction with an IR aiming laser.

The invisible IR laser beam would be easily seen through the AN/PVS-30 – as these IIT based devices can easily use this wavelength of IR light.

(Unlike the human eye.)

M110 Sniper System with Clip On Night Vision
Here the AN/PVS-30 Clip On Night Sight appears to be in use in conjunction with an IR aiming laser – mounted on the side of the picatinny rail. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Brian Calhoun, 108th Public Affairs Detachment)

AN/PVS-30 Clip On Sniper Night Sight – In Summary

The AN/PVS-30 is a Clip On Sniper Night Sight.

It uses a Gen III Image Intensification Tube to provide passive night vision.

It is meant to be used in conjunction with a regular day telescopic scope.

It is available commercially, but it falls under ITAR regulations and cannot be exported outside of the United States.

References

M2010 Enhanced Sniper Rifle (Wikipedia)

M110 Semi-Automatic Sniper System

M110 semi-automatic sniper system
The M110 Semi Automatic Sniper System (M110 SASS) is an American semi-automatic sniper rifle/designated marksman rifle that is chambered for the 7.62×51mm NATO round. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Matthew J. Marcellus)

Photo Credits

The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.

Much of the photos in this article are provided by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), or the manufacturers – and are the property of the manufacturers.

Affiliate disclaimer

We are an affiliate of OpticsPlanet.com and this article contains affiliate links. If you purchase equipment after clicking through these links, we receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. This helps us to bring you great information about this technology.

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