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Air defence Switzerland to test combat missiles in Sweden

Swiss Air Force fighter aircraft

Swiss Air Force fighter aircraft are equipped with a radar-guided medium range missile, an infrared missile for short ranges and a 20 mm gun.


The Swiss Air Force will be testing air-to-air missiles in Sweden due to lack of sufficient space in Switzerland. 

On Thursday, two Swiss F/A-18 Hornet fighter jets left the Emmen airfield in Switzerland and landed in Sweden at the Vidsel Test Range aerodrome. Various missile tests will be conducted there until October 12 under the supervision of Armasuisse, the Federal Office for Defence Procurement. 

“Modern air-to-air missile tests require very large spaces, vast safety zones and modern measuring instruments to monitor and evaluate firing tests. Few test sites in the United States and Europe meet these requirements and are also accessible to foreign air forces,” Armasuisse said in a statement on Thursday. 

Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAM) will be fired from a single-seater F/A-18C Hornet jet at drones in flight. A two-seater F/A-18D Hornet jet will serve as an escort aircraft during the tests. The flight and mission will then be analysed. 

The AMRAAM is a radar-guided air-to-air missile of the latest generation. It is intended for the Swiss Air Force’s F/A-18 fighter aircraft and is expected to partly replace its predecessor. The missile has its own radar which allows it to independently locate and track the target during the last phase of flight and is also capable of finding its target in all weathers. 

This is not the first time the Swiss have resorted to missile tests abroad. The most recent tests were carried out in 2007 in the US.

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