Raytheon AIM-9X Sidewinder demonstrates air-to-surface capability

TUCSON, Ariz., 10 Dec. 2009. Engineers at Raytheon Company in Tucson, Ariz., demonstrated the ability of the AIM-9X Sidewinder, an advanced infrared-guided, air-to-air missile, to attack surface targets.

Dec 10th, 2009

Posted by Courtney Howard

TUCSON, Ariz., 10 Dec. 2009. Engineers at Raytheon Company in Tucson, Ariz., demonstrated the ability of the AIM-9X Sidewinder, an advanced infrared-guided, air-to-air missile, to attack surface targets.

During the test on Sept. 23, an AIM-9X fired from a U.S. Air Force F-16C fighter sank a rapidly moving target boat in the Gulf of Mexico, a company official reveals. This test marks the third time an AIM-9X has engaged moving surface targets. A U.S. Air Force F-16 launched an AIM-9X and sank a maneuvering boat in April 2008, and a U.S. Air Force F-15C fired an AIM-9X and destroyed a fast-moving armored personnel carrier in March 2007.

"With a software upgrade, AIM-9X retains its air-to-air capabilities and gains an air-to-surface capability," says Harry Schulte, Raytheon Missile Systems vice president of Air Warfare Systems. "AIM-9X now has the potential to take on an additional mission at a very affordable cost."

More than 400 Raytheon employees design and build the AIM-9X Sidewinder missile in three locations: Tucson, Ariz.; Andover, Mass.; and Goleta, Calif.

Other technology firms across the U.S. manufacture components for the AIM-9X. Major suppliers include: Alliant Techsystems, Rocket Center, W.Va.; Atlantic Inertial Systems, Cheshire, Conn.; Axsys Technology, San Diego, Calif.; BAE Container Solutions, Longmont, Colo.; Celestica, Austin, Texas; Cristek Interconnects, Anaheim, Calif.; ENSER, St. Petersburg, Fla.; HR Textron, Valencia, Calif.; Klune Industries, Spanish Forks, Utah; L3 Comm, San Diego, Calif.; L3 KDI Precision Products, Cincinnati, Ohio.

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