AIM-9B Sidewinder

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An AIM-9B being fired.


The AIM-9B is an American infrared homing air-to-air missile, it was introduced in Update 1.85 "Supersonic". The AIM-9B is the earliest and least capable member of the Sidewinder family of missiles found in the game. It was the basis for the later Sidewinder missiles, as well as many other missiles found in the game. The Rb24 is an AIM-9B built under license in Sweden, while the R-3S, R-13M and PL-2 are all decedents of the Vympel R-3 missile, which was a Soviet reverse-engineered version of the AIM-9B. The AIM-9B also served as the basis for the design of the Israeli Shafrir missile, although there are notable differences between the two.

Vehicles equipped with this weapon

Vehicles equipped with this weapon
Jet fighters 
USA  F9F-8 · FJ-4B · FJ-4B VMF-232 · F-100D · F-4C Phantom II
Germany  Sea Hawk Mk.100 · CL-13B Mk.6
Japan  F-86F-40 ▅ · F-86F-40 JASDF▅ · T-2
Italy  ▄F-86K · G.91 R/4 · G.91 YS
France  ▄F-86K · ▄F-100D · Super Mystere B2 · Etendard IVM

General info

Like other early air-to-air missiles, the AIM-9B is limited in is destructive capabilities. Although it contains enough explosive filler to eliminate or cripple an enemy given a direct hit, those direct hits may be hard to come by. For one, this missile only has a 6G overload. Therefore, it is quite easy for an enemy to dodge it. All the enemy needs to do is to turn slightly, and the missile will likely miss. For greatest lethality, use this missile on slow targets that cannot manoeuvre well (though it should be noted that in this case, guns may be just as effective).

Additionally, the AIM-9B takes quite a length of time to acquire a target. (The time required may be reduced if the enemy is using their afterburner.) So, even achieving a firing solution may prove difficult.

Still, as one of the first air-to-air missiles in the game, the missile is quite effective for dealing with enemies in the right circumstances. Careful positioning and trigger discipline are required. In lower-tier jet combat, the AIM-9B is the gold standard for long to medium range air-to-air combat.

Effective damage

Describe the type of damage produced by this type of missile (high explosive, splash damage, etc)

Comparison with analogues

Give a comparative description of missiles that have firepower equal to this weapon.

Usage in battles

This missile is best utilised when trailing an enemy. This will allow the pilot enough time to close the distance and acquire a target lock before firing the missile. The AIM-9B is especially effective against jet bombers, such as the Vautour IIA IDF/AF (France), which generally have poor manoeuvrability.

When firing this missile, watch out for nearby friendly aircraft, and for the sun. The missile may lock onto either of these, causing at the best a miss, and at the worst an unintended team-kill.

The AIM-9B may be used to force the enemy to manoeuvre and bleed their speed, making it easier for the pilot to acquire a traditional firing solution and destroy the enemy with cannon fire.

Pros and cons


  • Effective at destroying low energy targets
  • Decent effective range can travel far in a straight line to intercept
  • Very effective against aircraft with low manoeuvrability
  • Effective against aircraft compressing at high speed


  • Narrow firing circle compared to later missiles with uncaged seekers
  • Poorest range out of all AIM-9 variants
  • Often loses track when the target manoeuvres in more than one dimension or turns sharply.


Examine the history of the creation and combat usage of the weapon in more detail than in the introduction. If the historical reference turns out to be too long, take it to a separate article, taking a link to the article about the weapon and adding a block "/History" (example: and add a link to it here using the main template. Be sure to reference text and sources by using <ref></ref>, as well as adding them at the end of the article with <references />.


An excellent addition to the article would be a video guide, as well as screenshots from the game and photos.

See also

Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:

  • reference to the article about the variant of the weapon;
  • references to approximate analogues by other nations and research trees.

External links

Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:

  • topic on the official game forum;
  • encyclopedia page on the weapon;
  • other literature.

AAM  AIM-7D Sparrow · AIM-7E Sparrow
  AIM-9B Sidewinder · AIM-9D Sidewinder · AIM-9E Sidewinder · AIM-9G Sidewinder · AIM-9J Sidewinder · AIM-9L Sidewinder · AIM-9P Sidewinder
  AIM-92 Stinger
AGM  AGM-12B Bullpup · AGM-12C Bullpup · AGM-22 · AGM-65A · AGM-114B Hellfire · AGM-114K Hellfire II · BGM-71D TOW-2
AAM  AIM-9B FGW.2 Sidewinder
AGM  HOT-1 · HOT-2 TOW · HOT-3 · PARS 3 LR
SAM  Roland
AAM  9M39 Igla · R-3R · R-3S · R-13M · R-60 · R-60M
AGM  9K127 Vikhr · 9M17M Falanga · 9M17P Falanga-PV · 9M120 Ataka · 9M120M Ataka
  Kh-23M · Kh-25 · Kh-29L · Kh-66
ATGM  3M7 · 9M14 · 9M113 Konkurs · 9M114 Shturm · 9M123 · 9M133
SAM  9M311 · 9M311-1M
AAM  Fireflash · Firestreak · Red Top · SRAAM
ATGM  BAe Swingfire · MILAN · MILAN 2 · ZT3
SAM  Starstreak
ATGM  Type 64 MAT · Type 79
SAM  Type 91
ATGM  HJ-73 · HJ-73E
SAM  Mistral SATCP
AAM  AA-20 Nord · Matra R530 · Matra R530E · Matra R550 Magic 1 · Mistral · Shafrir
AGM  9M14-2 Malyutka-2 · AS-20 Nord · AS-30 Nord · HOT-1 · HOT-2 TOW · HOT-3
SAM  Roland
AAM  RB24 · RB24J
AGM  Rb05A
ATGM  Rbs 55 · Rbs 56
SAM  Rbs 70
  AAM = Air-to-Air Missile   AGM = Air-to-Ground Missile   ATGM = Anti-Tank Guided Missile (Ground mounts)   SAM = Surface-to-Air Missile