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Armasuisse and the Swiss Air Force have completed the testing of the four candidates for the new Swiss fighter aircraft (Air 2030 program). In the one-week flight program, the candidates had to complete seven specified missions and one of their own choice. This was preceded by simulator hours with the manufacturers and audits for air forces in which the aircraft on offer were in service.

After the withdrawal of Gripen E (Saab), the applicant field consists of the Eurofighter (Airbus), the F / A-18 E / F Super Hornet (Boeing), the Rafale (Dassault) and the F-35 A (Lockheed Martin).

The findings will be summarized by armasuisse in collaboration with all the departments involved. The fleet size required for each aircraft type is also determined.

At the end of 2019, armasuisse wants to hand over a second offer request to the providers. The results of this will form the basis of the evaluation report to be drawn up from mid-2020, in which the overall benefit of the candidates for an operating period of 30 years is determined and compared. At the end there is a referendum vote based on the results of which the Federal Council will decide on the type and number of aircraft to be procured. The F / A-18 C / D Hornet combat aircraft available at the Swiss Air Force will reach the end of their service life in 2030.

Gerhard Heiming