Minister of Defence visits WTD52
Minister of Defence visits WTD52
- Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support
- Reading time:
- 2 MIN
Our soldiers protect democracy and freedom - but the troops themselves also need protection. The Bundeswehr Technical Center for Protective and Special Technologies (WTDWehrtechnische Dienststelle 52) is indispensable in this context. The Minister of Defense, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer was instructed about its work and visited the agency with a view of the Alps on 7 October 2020.
The best possible protection for service members
The Minister was particularly interested in the Landmines and IEDImprovised Explosive Device building which was only completed in 2017, It impresses by its sheer size - it has a surface of 80 x 25 meters - and was built nearly completely without metal. It contains five testing fields with different soil types where handheld and vehicle based IEDImprovised Explosive Device detectors - also for unconventional explosive and incendiary devices- are tested and evaluated under laboratory conditions. This guarantees the best possible protection against these threats for our servicemen and women in operations. In order to gain a better understanding, the Minister of Defense received an explanation of the different physical detection technologies and systems for detecting booby traps. Kramp-Karrenbauer simply decided to test a handheld detector system herself in order to gain her own impressions.
An indispensable contribution to national and collective defense
The underground facilities in the “Reiteralpe” massif are another unique feature of WTDWehrtechnische Dienststelle 52. They are used for experimental simulations. Weapon effects on critical infrastructure such as government or embassy buildings are one of the scenarios tested there. The Minister of Defense got a first-hand impression of a test. The scenario: A blast wave hits a metal storage tank. The blast wave simulates the explosion of approx. 1,000 tons of TNTTrinitrotoluol equivalent explosives. A high-performance blast simulator was used to create this effect. The Minister of Defense left Oberjettenberg expressing how impressed she was with the staff and the material. She wrote in the guest book: “Thank you for your work with which you protect our servicemen and women! You are a vital for our security!”
Seamless transition to visit to the troops
The Minister also stressed the significance of the agency and the work of the women and men employed there in personal talks with Peter Pörsch, Director of WTDWehrtechnische Dienststelle 52. She also presented an award to two employees of the test center for the inventions they made during their work at the center and gave them each a certificate of recognition for their technical developments. After that, Kramp-Karrenbauer took the Bundeswehr-owned cable car to the Reiteralpe accompanied by the director of the test center. There she was welcomed by the commander of the 23d Mountain Infantry Brigade, Colonel Maik Keller. The seamless transition to the Minister’s visit to the 23d Mountain Infantry Brigade exemplifies the close cooperation and ties between WTDWehrtechnische Dienststelle 52 and the mountain infantry.