Denel Overberg Test Range secures long-term SA contract


The Denel Overberg Test Range (OTR) has secured a five-year contract from the South African Department of Defence and Military Veterans to deliver flight tests services, Denel has revealed.

In its 2016/17 annual report, Denel said the contract, which runs up to 31 March 2022, marks the first time an order has been placed for a five-year period. The order will cover around 40% of Denel OTR’s annual revenue for this period.

The annual report noted that the Overberg Test Range has been providing in-flight test services to the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) in terms of a multi-year contract.

Other key events of the 2016/17 financial year included conducting tests “for two established international clients, namely a ground-to-air defence test for an Air Force involving missiles fired at static and dynamic targets, and an air-to-ground test for a European air force in which stand-off missiles were released at various targets.” The latter was probably in reference to the German military testing Taurus missiles at the range in early 2017.

As the test range lies within the Denel stable, it provides essential support to sister companies for various in-service and development test, such as the 2016 test-firing of a prototype Marlin beyond visual range missile developed by Denel Dynamics.

During the previous financial year, the range continued with its technology renewal programme focused on upgrading and maintaining capabilities, including the complete refurbishment of a cinetheodolite instrument and procurement of various new high-speed video cameras and hardware interfaces. The range also developed the technology for a radio-controlled moving target with a range in excess of 10km. This target has already been successfully used in a recent test, Denel said.

Regarding its financial performance, the Denel OTR made a profit of R10 million for the 2016/17 financial year off the back of R137 million in revenue (of which R43 million came from export contracts). This compares to a R14 million profit in 2015/16 off of R116 million in revenue.