Type: Assault Rifle
Nations: Germany, Austria, France, United States, Poland, Australia, Netherlands, Norway, Japan +
Branch: Armed Forces, Law Enforcement
Time Period: 2004-present (2020)
Conflicts: Invasion of Iraq, Global War on Terrorism, War in Afghanistan, Operation Ocean Shield, Conflict in Syria +
Caliber: 5.56x45mm NATO
Facts: Developed by former Delta Force operator Larry Vickers and German firearms manufacturer Heckler & Koch, the HK416 was a response to the request from the US Delta Force for a new rifle to replace their M4 carbines in the 1990s. The rifle boasted improved reliability while increasing parts life and was adopted by Delta around 2004. Since then, the rifle has become increasingly popular with special operations units, militaries and specialized law enforcement and is used on an almost global scale. It also boasts the notoriety of being the rifle that was used to kill Osama Bin Laden during the Navy SEAL raid in Pakistan, 2011. The rifle uses a short stroke gas piston system, unlike the M16/ M4 which uses an internal piston and gas tube. Although more violent in recoil and making the rifle slightly heavier, it allowed the rifle to be more reliable and use an adjustable gas system more adaptable in adverse conditions as well as being a more suitable suppressor host. It also uses a monolithic rail system for mounting optics, lights and lasers for mission specific functionality.