Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems was selected to supply a new drone program to the Swiss Armed Forces, the firm announced Sunday morning.
The current drone program in Switzerland - the ADS 95 Ranger reconnaissance drone system, operating since 2001 - is slated to be replaced by 2020, under the new defense agreement.
Elbit Systems' Hermes 900 HFE, an all-weather, unarmed reconnaissance drone system, is more flexible, has longer endurance in the air and a wider operational range than the system currently used by the Swiss Armed Forces, according to an official statement by the Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport (“DDPS”).
"The Hermes 900 HFE has been favored," the statement said, "because it delivered the better overall result in all assessed criteria."
The deal will cost around 250 million francs (nearly NIS 1 billion) but still needs final approval from the Swiss government.