Power with Control
Sparrow is radar guided, the balloon itself little signature if any at all. The payload itself would have easily shown as a target. They did not use a heat seeker, no heat.
Amazing both sidewinder and sparrow are 60 years old but upgraded many times. I toted many of them, hundreds on working parties.
Well, this video shows the hit. Looks to me to be right between the payload and the balloon. Radar would have hit the payload square on. I suspect there might have been a heat source there. Maybe a small heater, remember, this thing isn't exactly a weather balloon. Sparrow I think would have had a larger explosion. Looks like they will get the payload back after all. They said its in 47 feet of water. Look at about 12 seconds in on this video.
The FAA stopped air traffic at three airports across the Carolinas for U.S. fighter jets to take down the Chinese spy balloon that was making its way across American air space over the past several days. The balloon debris is now in the Atlantic ocean where the U.S. military will attempt to...