The South African
National Antenna Test Range

Paardefontein Test Range

The South African National Antenna Test Range is situated at Paardefontein, 45 km north of Pretoria, South Africa. It is the only open air, far field reflective antenna test range in the country, allowing precision testing of antennas which cannot be tested in indoor anechoic chambers due to their dimensions, weight and/or frequencies. It is located in an area of low radio interference, has extensive facilities, on-site expertise and a proven track record - all making it an excellent choice for antenna testing. It is an extremely versatile range in that it can test frequencies from 300 kHz - 18 GHz.

The range was originally designed for testing radar antennas, but in recent years the range has also been used extensively for the testing of other antennas and antenna systems. excellent example of a ground-reflection range.
-ES Gillespie, Antenna Handbook.

The NATR has three different ranges:

  • The Microwave range
  • The VHF/UHF range
  • The Slant or Short range

Apart from the above, the NATR also has an automated turn-table and a manually driven turn-table which serves as a drive-on platform for heavy equipment such as vehicles and helicopters for which the best position of antennae must be determined.