in Defence

Denel hints at new Rooivalk on the cards

Posted 27 July 2015 · Add Comment

Group chief executive of South African state-owned Denel, Riaz Saloojee, hopes to get approval from the government to restart the Rooivalk combat helicopter production line.

He was briefing the media on the group’s financial results for 2014/15, which showed Denel posting a profit for the 5th consecutive year. It increased revenues by 28% to R5.9 billion (approx. US$ 500 million). With Denel claiming a global footprint across Africa, Asia Pacific, Middle East, Europe and South America, its exports now account for 52% of business.

“We hope to get a decision within three to six months from the Department of Defence to indicate the roadmap for Rooivalk,” Saloojee said. “The Minister of Defence is on record lauding the helicopter’s performance and wants us to further exploit it operationally and technologically.”

This follows the routing of rebel forces in late 2013 in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, where the helicopter was deployed as part of United Nations peace enforcement operations.

Whilst characterising the Rooivalk as a “very credible attack helicopter,” Saloojee acknowledged that it needed upgrading, saying discussions with the DoD are under way. “But if we get the go-ahead on a Rooivalk Mk. 2, it would be a completely new attack helicopter, though based on the existing machine.”

He said the SARA (South African Regional Aircraft) concept unveiled at the Africa Aerospace and Defence show in September last year was still being pursued. It is a collaborative project with technical and government institutions, including universities. Aimed primarily at the African market to serve low-density routes, the SARA project will also build on Denel’s skills development initiatives to groom engineers and technicians in the aerospace environment.

On the Seeker 400 unmanned aerial vehicle system (UAVS), Saloojee said it was entering production shortly for an unnamed launch customer.

Derived from Denel’s smaller and successful Seeker 200, it is more capable with a dual payload capacity for different tactical missions. Cruising at 150km/h, at an operating altitude of 18,000ft, it has endurance of 16 hours. Making use of a tactical ground station it has a line-of-sight range of up to 750km.

Shown in an armed configuration at IDEX in Abu Dhabi recently, this variant named ‘Snyper’ was likely destined for a foreign customer.
 

* required field

Post a comment

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

Bombardier’s Challenger 350 aircraft reaches 300 deliveries

Bombardier has announced that its industry-leading Challenger 350 aircraft is the fastest business jet in history to reach 300 deliveries in the medium and large categories.

Reforms needed to maximise aviation benefits in South Africa

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) presented its latest study on the economic value of air transport and tourism to South Africa, and identified opportunities for significant expansion over the next 20 years if key

Pegasus Universal Aerospace names Robbie Irons as CEO

South Africa’s Pegasus Universal Aerospace, pioneer of the Vertical Business Jet (VBJ) Pegasus One, has named Robbie Irons as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Ethiopian Airways CEO awarded Honorary Doctorate Degree

Addis Ababa University has conferred an Honorary Doctorate Degree upon Tewolde GebreMariam, Group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, at the University’s annual graduation ceremony held at the Millennium Hall in Addis Ababa on 13 July, 2019.

Ethiopian Airlines to launch flights to Garowe in Somalia

Ethiopian Airlines and SKYTRAX are to launch flight to Garowe, Somalia, via Bossaso, Somalia effective 15 July 2019.

Securing air service levels for Zimbabwe

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) yesterday met with Zimbabwe’s President, Emmerson Mnangagwa and a high level government delegation, to discuss the contribution of aviation to the country’s economy and

Aviationgate SK1007101019
See us at
Dubai AS BT2006211119MEBAA BT2006260919