It was announced on March 27 that the Musee de lAviation Militaire-Clin d Ailes in Switzerland is to retire twin-seat Dassault Mirage IIIDS…
The Musee de l’Aviation Militaire-Clin d’Ailes in Switzerland is to retire twin-seat Dassault Mirage IIIDS J-2012 (HB-RDF) following a decision by the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation to withdraw the jet’s certificate of airworthiness. The move effectively ends private Mirage III operations in Europe.
Delta-Foxtrot was the world’s sole civilian-operated example of the French jet. The decision to ground it came about partly due to its time-limited SNECMA Atar engine, and other components. The delta served the Swiss Air Force from 1983, and was retired to its current home, Payerne, in 2003. Two years later it was offered to Espace Passion Foundation, which returned it to the skies as HB-RDF on September 10, 2008. The group offered passenger flights in the jet to members, helping to keep it airworthy and its crews current.
In a March 27 statement, the Foundation said: “With the end of the engine potential and the aging of certain parts and components, 2023 unfortunately marks the end of flights of our Mirage. The retirement does not mean, however, a cessation of activities for our association.” Two final flights are planned for May 25, after which the aircraft is likely to join the museum as a static exhibit. Keep an eye on Key.Aero for more updates on the machine’s immediate future.