Raytheon [RTN] and the U.S. Army recently successfully test fired an AIM-9X Block II missile from the military’s ground-based Indirect Fire Protection Capability Increment 2-I (IFPC 2-I) Block 1 Multi-Mission Launcher (MML), the company said Wednesday.

The AIM-9X is normally an air-to-air missile, fired from an aircraft to aerial targets. However, this latest test shows the most recent version can be used in ground-based air defense without modification as well, Raytheon said.

The launch of an AIM-9X-2 Sidewinder Missile. Photo: Raytheon.
The launch of an AIM-9X-2 Sidewinder Missile. Photo: Raytheon.

“This is another example of how Raytheon is leveraging its proven portfolio of products to fulfill gaps in other mission areas, such as ground-based air defense. AIM-9X can perform well against fighter aircraft, unmanned aerial systems or cruise missiles and retain the ‘first look, first shot, first kill’ reputation–in the air and from the ground,” Mike Jarrett, Raytheon Air Warfare Systems vice president, said in a statement.

In the test, the AIM-9X missile locked onto an unmanned aerial system (UAS) before launch. It then intercepted and destroyed the target, which was flying 1,500 meters high, Raytheon said.

The missile test also validated the operation and design of the Army’s IFPC MML prototype.

Raytheon has been producing the AIM-9X for over 14 years. The system entered service in 2003 and the company began international deliveries in 2005. The missile is a U.S. Navy-led and Air Force program.

Development of the Block II missile began in 2011 and completed operational test and evaluation in early 2015. The Navy declared initial operational capacity in March 2015, Raytheon said.

The company highlighted AIM-9X Block II is set to be the baseline effector for the IFPC 2-I Block 1 MML. The tests illustrate the missile is dual use for both air-to-air and ground-to-air capabilities, with no missile modifications necessary.

Raytheon currently has 18 international customers for the AIM-9X. Nine are original BLOCK 1 customers and nine new and five repeat customers for Block II.