Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Switzerland to Carry Out Flight Tests for Acquisition of a New Reconnaissance UAV

In-flight evaluations will take place in September and October on the Emmen airbase for the acquisition of new unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) reconnaissance system (ADS 15). Out of the eleven systems made by nine companies that were originally in the running, those submitted by Israel Aerospace Industries and Elbit Systems Ltd. remain in contention.

The trials will be performed in September (3/9 to 21/9) and October (1/10 to 19/10) by a project team comprising the Swiss Air Force and armasuisse specialists. Flight testing will take place in central Switzerland and in the Jura region.

These flights are part of the overall evaluation of the two systems competing for the Swiss acquisition program, the Hermes 900 (Elbit) and Heron 1 (IAI).

Selection of the winner is expected for the first half of 2014, and its acquisition will be included in the Armaments Plan 2015.

Currently, the Swiss Air Force operates the reconnaissance drone 95 (ADS 95), which will reach the end of its useful life the coming years.

Within the framework of the in-flight evaluation, media will have the opportunity to form an impression of the two UAV systems evaluated, on September 20 for the IAI design and October 16 for Elbit’s, during specific press days.

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