Lexington Park in St. Mary's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
AIM-9H Sidewinder Missile
The First Solid-State Sidewinder The AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missile was developed by the Navy's Pacific Missile Test Center at China Lake, California, in the early 1950s. It was the first missile to be guided by tracking the heat (infrared) energy produced by a target aircraft. It was named Sidewinder after the desert snake that uses its infrared sensors to detect the heat given off by its prey.
The AIM-9H version of the Sidewinder was fielded in the early 1970s. While earlier Sidewinders employed vacuum-tube technology, the AIM-9H gained the advantages of transistors and more powerful flight control actuators. The use of solid-state technology made the AIM-9H much more robust and reliable in the aircraft carrier environment. The missile's increased maneuverability proved highly effective in aerial combat. Used extensively by the Navy in Vietnam, many elusive adversaries, such as the MiG-17 and MiG-19 fighters, fell victim to the deadly Sidewinder.
AIM-9s were manufactured by Raytheon Company, Ford Aerospace, and Loral Corporation. The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) at NAS Patuxent River manages the development,
Our Display Missile Our Sidewinder is an accurate full-scale mock-up that was intended for display and engineering purposes, and never meant for flight.
• Primary Use: Air-to-air combat
• U.S. Service Timeline (AIM-9 series): 1950s to present
• Users: U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and other nations
• Speed: Mach 2.5+
• Operational Range: 0.6 to 20+ miles
• Length: 9.4 feet
• Span: 2.06 feet (across fins)
• Weight: 186 lbs
• Warhead Weight: 21 lbs
Erected by Patuxent River Naval Air Museum.
Location. 38° 16.536′ N, 76° 27.733′ W. Marker is in Lexington Park, Maryland, in St. Mary's County. Marker can be reached from Three Notch Road (Maryland Route 235) north of Buse Road, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 22156 Three Notch Road, Lexington Park MD 20653, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Mk-82 500-lb Snakeye Bomb (a few steps from this marker); McDonnell Douglas F-4J Phantom II (a few steps from this marker); The F9F-8B “Cougar” (a few steps from this marker); Grumman NF-14D Tomcat (a few steps from this marker); Grumman F-9J Cougar (a few steps from this marker); LTV NA-7A Corsair II (within shouting distance of this marker); North American RA-5C Vigilante (within shouting distance of this marker); McDonnell Douglas F/A-18A Hornet (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Lexington Park.
Categories. • Air & Space • Military • War, Vietnam •
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Credits. This page was last revised on August 31, 2019. This page originally submitted on August 31, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 50 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 31, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.