Raytheon from US secures a $1.2 billion contract with Switzerland to deliver Patriot missile systems
According to information published by the American company on April 3, 2023, American company Raytheon Technologies has secured a $1.2 billion foreign military sales contract from the U.S. Army, marking Switzerland’s adoption of the Patriot GEM-T air defense missile system. This move makes Switzerland the 18th global Patriot partner and the eighth European country to rely on the system for air defense.
The contract covers the provision of five Patriot fire units and an unspecified number of Guidance Enhanced Missiles (GEM-T). The GEM-T missile has demonstrated its ability to successfully intercept tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and enemy aircraft.
As part of the agreement, Raytheon will collaborate with Swiss industry partners to ensure that the Patriot system addresses Switzerland’s air defense requirements and preserves its sovereignty. The deal includes plans for local industry participation, further strengthening Switzerland’s air defense capabilities.
Tom Laliberty, president of Land Warfare & Air Defense at Raytheon, expressed confidence in the Patriot system, noting its widespread adoption by the U.S. Army and 17 other international countries. Switzerland’s entry into the Global Patriot user community will grant the country access to a wealth of commonality, cooperation, experience, and cost-sharing over the weapon system’s life cycle.
The Patriot Guidance Enhanced Missile-T (GEM-T) is an advanced version of the Patriot surface-to-air missile, designed to defeat a wide range of airborne threats, including tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and enemy aircraft. Manufactured by Raytheon Technologies, the GEM-T is a crucial component of the Patriot air defense system, which is utilized by the U.S. Army and many international partners for ground-based air defense capabilities.
The GEM-T missile features various improvements over its predecessors, such as an enhanced guidance system, better target tracking, and increased resistance to electronic countermeasures. These upgrades enable the missile to effectively intercept and neutralize modern threats in today’s complex battle environments.
The GEM-T has a range of up to 160 km (100 miles) and can reach altitudes of around 24 km (80,000 feet). The missile is specifically designed to engage and defeat a wide array of targets, including tactical ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles. The missile is capable of engaging and destroying a variety of aerial threats, including high-performance fighter jets, bombers, and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).