Key Dates
Swiss Air Force

1900    First Swiss military observation balloon unit created
31 July 1914    Swiss military air arm established (Fliegertruppe)
August 1914    Unable to buy aircraft from neighbouring countries, the Swiss government asks the first eight pilots called up to bring their own aeroplanes
1914-1918    Swiss air arm carries out periodic reconnaissance flights to maintain neutrality
19 October 1936    Air Force becomes an independent service (Schweizerische Flugwaffe)
11 September 1937    First M.S.406H arrives in Thun
November 1938    First Bf 109D delivered
September 1939    Neutrality patrols established by fighter units
November 1939    First Swiss produced M.S.406H (D3800) accepted.
10 May 1940    When France invaded, Swiss air space repeatedly violated by German aircraft. mainly bombers returning from France
11 June 1940    Four Swiss Bf 109s shoot down two He 111s that had crossed the frontier
1946    First jet aircraft delivered – Vampire F.1
1946    Air Force name changed to Swiss Air Force & Anti-Aircraft Command
1948    Air Force receives the first 25 of 130 Mustangs bought from the USA
1952    First helicopters received – Hiller 360
January 1958    Swiss Parliament approves order for 100 Hawker Hunter F Mk. 5
June 1961    Swiss Parliament authorises the purchase of 100 Mirage III from France
8 August 1964    Official aerobatic team the Patrouille Suisse is first formed with 4 Hunters
1995    Aerobatic team Patrouille Suisse switches from Hunter to F-5E Tiger II
1 Jan 1996    Air Force name changed to present title

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