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Russian hi-tech firm to feature Soviet experimental assault rifle at Army-2019 arms show

The rifle developed in 1965 will be the central exhibit among Soviet experimental firearms
AO-36 assault rifle Rostec
AO-36 assault rifle
© Rostec

MOSCOW, June 24. /TASS/. Russia’s Central Research Institute of Precision Machine-Building (TsNIITochMash, part of the state hi-tech corporation Rostec) will demonstrate the Soviet experimental AO-36 double-barrel assault rifle at the Army-2019 military and technical forum, according to the press release circulated by Rostec on Monday.

"The AO-36 double-barrel 5.6mm assault rifle developed in 1965 will be the central exhibit" among Soviet experimental firearms, the statement says.

The assault rifle is capable of firing two barrels simultaneously, with bullets affecting each other’s ballistics and thus increasing fire dispersal.

The assault rifle will be on display as part of the vintage exposition of experimental firearms unknown to the public at large and developed by the institute in the 1960s-1980s. The visitors will also be able to view "AO-34, AO-38M, AO-40, and AO-36 assault rifles and the AO-22M machine-gun that did not go into serial production for various reasons," the press release says.

As Rostec Industrial Director Sergei Abramov said, the firearms that will be on display at the Army-2019 forum influenced the development of combat small arms.

"Timed for the 75h anniversary of TsNIITochMash, we are opening the institute’s archives and will show experimental models to the public for the first time. Although, these models did not go into serial production, they influenced the development of combat small arms as their design solutions were used in other types of firearms," the statement says.

Specifically, the 5.6mm AO-40 assault rifle served as the prototype for the 5.45mm AN-94 gun developed at the Izhevsk Machine-Building Enterprise and accepted for service in the Russian army in 1997 while the automatics scheme used in the AO-38M laid the basis for developing the assault rifles SA-006 (the Kovrov Mechanical Factory, 1966-1972), Al-7 and Al-9 (Izhmash), AEK-971 and AEK-973 (the Kovrov Mechanical Factory).