AIM-9X Block I fired from F-35A
Raytheon, along with the US Navy and US Air Force, has successfully test-fired three AIM-9X Block I short-range, air-to-air missiles from an F-35A aircraft.
All three targeted and directly hit airborne targets. They are the first short-range, air-to-air missiles to be used on the F-35 platform, and the successful tests demonstrate the end-to-end capability of the AIM-9X on-board the aircraft.
The tests proved the missile's loading, in-flight carriage, target acquisition and track, launch separation, safe separation, in-flight guidance and impact/proximity fuzing at target intercept capabilities on the aircraft.
The F-35 can carry two AIM-9X missiles on its wings and four AIM-120s internally when configured for an air dominance mission. The fourth guided test in the series will take place later in 2016.
Mark Justus, AIM-9X program director for Raytheon Missile Systems, said: 'These tests validated the on-board communications and handoffs between the aircraft and the missile required to prosecute an aerial target.
'AIM-9X will help ensure our pilots and allies have the most reliable and effective weapons on the F-35. We look forward to the remaining flight test and integration work, leading to fielding of the AIM-9X on the most advanced fighter aircraft.'
Introduction of the AIM-9X across the F-35 fleet is expected in 2017.
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