In Switzerland, to identify individual aircraft, all military aircraft are allocated and display a serial number.
Pre Air Force Years to 1915Edit
From 1900 to 1915 the Swiss Military had artillery observation balloons. The balloons were usually referred to by a name, for example Vagabond, Bise, hair dryer, etc. The numbering of the balloon corps was autonomous and had nothing to do with the numbers of Fliegerabteilung (Air Force). The Balloons had the serials from 1 to 20.
The Swiss Air Force was founded in 1914. The first Aircraft started with the serials 21, 22 23, .. In 1915 the Balloons get the prefix "K". Some requisitioned Aircraft don't get any serial number.
1915 to 1936Edit
The serial numbers were all without a prefix and reached from 21 to 873.
1936 to todayEdit
Aircraft serial numberingEdit
The Swiss Air Force military aircraft are identified by a role prefix and number, the prefix or code identifies the role and the serial numbers the type or variant, the system was introduced in 1936.
- Letter code
The letter or letters give the role of the aircraft.
|A||Ausbildung = Trainer||Pilatus PC-21: A-101|
|B||Bomber||De Havilland D.H.98 Mosquito: B-5|
|C||Communication||Pilatus PC-9: C-403|
|D||Drohne = Drone||ADS-95: D-108|
|J||Jäger = Fighter||F/A-18C: J-5001|
|KAB||Kampfbeobachtung = "Battlefield observation"||Hiller UH-12: KAB-101|
|R||Reconnaissance||Diamond DA42: R-711|
|T||Transport||Dassault Falcon 900: T-785|
|U||Umschulung = "Advanced trainer"||BAe Hawk: U-1251|
|V||Verbindung = Liaison||Pilatus PC-6: V-622|
|Z||Zieldrohne = Target drone||Farner/RUAG KZD-85: Z-30|
This is followed by a number having from two to four digits.
- Four-digit numbers
The first digit identifies the aircraft type. The next three are for the sub-type and the individual aircraft, with the first and sometimes second for the subtype; and the third and sometimes fourth for the individual aircraft, In the following examples, "x" identifies the individual aircraft:
- Mirage IIIBS = J-200x
- Mirage IIIDS = J-201x
- Mirage IIIRS = R-21xx
- Mirage IIIC = J-22xx
- Mirage IIIS = J-23xx
- F-5E = J-30xx (serials previously used for the FFA P-16)
- F-5F = J-32xx
- Three-digit numbers
Most aircraft have three numbers. These follow a broadly similar pattern to the four-digit numbers, although there are exceptions.
Transport aircraft have a first digit of 3 for helicopters and 7 for fixed wing aircraft.
- Two-digit numbers
Target drones have only two numbers.
Using of civil serial by Military AviationEdit
Until 2005 it was possible that the Swiss Air Force used for its VIP aircraft a military aircraft serial T-XXX or a civil serial HB-XXX. Since 2005 all Swiss Air Force VIP aircraft have only military aircraft serials. For e.g. Cessna 560XL former HB-VAA now T-784.
Armasuisse belongs, like the Air Force, to the Defense Department. Armasuisse Operates tree aircraft, two of them have a civil aircraft serials ( Pilatus PC-6 HB-FCF and Pilatus PC-12 HB-FOG) and one with a military aircraft serial (Diamond DA42 R-711).
- List of aircraft of the Swiss Air Force
- United Kingdom military aircraft serials
- Portuguese military aircraft serials
- Belgian aircraft registration and serials
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