Switzerland USN F 5E Hans van Herk 640Update on US Navy's ARTEMIS programme

In addition to our news item of 4 January 2021 on the ARTEMIS programme, Gary Parsons provided us, not yet confirmed, information on the former Schweizer Luftwaffe (Swiss Air Force) F-5E and F-5F Tiger IIs involved.

The ARTEMIS programme has been issued by the US Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) and includes modifications to the airframes and the J85-21 engines.

ARTEMIS stands for Avionics Reconfiguration and Tactical Enhancement/Modernization for Inventory Standardization.

The US Navy intends to award a five year exclusive contract to Tactical Air Support, Inc. (Tactical Air) as from 15 June 2021. The first delivery of an ARTEMIS upgraded Tiger II is expected in Q4 of 2022. After upgrade, the Tigers will be designated as F-5N+ and F-5F+. At a later stage, the ARTEMIS programme will provision kits and integrate the Block Upgrade System in up to forty additional currently in-service F-5N/Fs.

Although not yet 100% confirmed, the details of the 22 former Swiss Air Force Tiger IIs involved, eighteen F-5E and four F-5F, should be:

F-5E: J-3005, J-3014, J-3015, J-3030, J-3036, J-3038, J-3041, J-3052, J-3057, J-3062, J-3065, J-3067, J-3068, J-3069, J-3074, J-3076, J-3079 and J-3092
F-5F: J-3205, J-3206, J-3208 and J-3209

We learned from a Swiss friend that the following F-5s are currently stored at RUAG, and these are reported as earmarked for the US Navy:

F-5E: J-3015, J-3036, J-3041, J-3052, J-3056, J-3062, J-3063, J-3067, J-3069, J-3072 and J-3076
F-5F: J-3204, J-3205, J-3206, J-3207, J-3208 and J-3209

He reported that J-3014 is already in the USA as N65FK while another F-5E (J-3057) is at the Swiss Air Force Museum at Payerne but this one might be replaced by another still active aircraft.

Further potential candidates, besides the RUAG stored aircraft, for transfer to the USA are:

F-5E: J-3005, J-3030, J-3033, J-3044, J-3065, J-3068, J-3070, J-3073, J-3074, J-3077, J-3079, J-3092, J-3093, J-3094, J-3095 and J-3097

The ones marked in red are different from the first list. Let’s wait and see what is happening with the Swiss Tigers.

Photo: Hans van Herk

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