April 16 (UPI) — Raytheon has been awarded a $12.1 million contract for AIM-9X Sidewinder missiles for the U.S. Navy, U.S. Army and 21 allies.
The contract is for the procurement of the AIM-9X Lot 18 Block II All Up Round tactical short-range air-to-air missile, as well as captive air training missile guidance units, tail caps and containers, the Department of Defense announced Monday.
The governments are Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey and United Arab Emirates.
Thirty-percent of the work will be performed at Raytheon’s plant in Tucson, Ariz. and 10 percent in Andover, Mass. The rest will be done in other U.S. cities, as well as Ottawa, Canada, and Heilbronn, Germany.
Work is expected to be completed by March 2021.
Fiscal 2017, 2018, and 2019 weapons procurement, research, development, test and evaluation in the amount of 12.1 million will be obligated at time of award, $302,997 of which will expire at the end of the fiscal year.
The modification combines purchases for the Navy at $884,869 and Air Force at $678,935. The rest comes from foreign military sales.
The missile, which is 9.5 feet long and 5 inches in diameter, is configured for the F-15, F-16, F/A-18, E/A-18G, F-22 and F-35 fighters.
The AIM-9 Sidewinder entered service and was adopted by the U.S. Air Force in 1956, but it could not engage targets close to the ground, and it didn’t have nighttime or head-on attack capability, according to the Air Force website.
The AIM-9X Sidewinder missile, which entered service in November 2003, includes advanced infrared-tracking, short-range, air-to-air and surface-to-air missiles. The Block II variant, which completed its first test firing in November 2008, has a redesigned fuse and a digital ignition safety device to enhance ground handling and in-flight safety.
“The effectiveness and versatility of the AIM-9X Sidewinder missile have been combat proven in several theaters throughout the world,” Raytheon wrote on its website.