UMEX & SimTEX 2022 conclude an exceptional edition with historic deals exceeding AED 2 billion

Abu Dhabi, UAE, 23 February 2022: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces, the fifth edition of UMEX & SimTEX 2022 concluded today at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, and was the largest edition of this event in terms of exhibition area and exhibitors, with 134 exhibitors from 26 countries from around the world.

On the third day of the UMEX and SimTEX 2022 exhibitions, the Ministry of Defence announced the signing of six new deals with a total value of AED 455.495 million, an increase of more than 266% over the 2020 version, and the total deals and contracts concluded by the Ministry since the launch of the fifth edition increased to more than AED 2 billion, an increase of approximately 177% from the fourth edition’s deals in 2020.

The Ministry of Defence’s deals on the third and final day of UMEX & SimTEX 2022 included deals with local companies valued at AED 51 million, and contracts with international companies valued at around AED 404.495 million.

These deals included one with Star Satellite Communications Company valued at AED 26 million for installing a communications system for the drone project, and a deal with the Emirates Technical Services for providing technical support and assistance for the container system at a value of AED 25 million.

The third day’s deals also included one valued at AED 112.966 million with Boeing for providing training and maintenance services for flight simulators, and one with France’s Thales DMS valued at AED 66.128 million for updating and developing naval systems on planes, a deal valued at AED 194.352 with ESE Limited for providing self-defence equipment for planes, and a deal valued at AED 31.048 million with CAE Maritime Middle East for revising the contract for a plane training centre.

His Excellency Major General Dr. Mubarak Saeed Ghafan Al Jabri

At the conclusion of the event, His Excellency Major General Dr. Mubarak Saeed Ghafan Al Jabri, head of the UMEX and SimTEX 2022 and accompanying conference Higher Organising Committee, said: “This growth in the scale of deals reflects the UAE’s pivotal role in enhancing the national and regional economy, stability, and security and its leading position in promoting innovations in the field of unmanned systems. It also supports its work towards developing national capabilities which empower and strengthen the UAE to confront challenges.

“In addition to the deals, the exhibitions provided a platform for international companies to unveil their advanced technologies and new innovations, unveiling 22 never-before-seen technologies during the live demonstrations held today at Tilal Swaihan area in Abu Dhabi,” he added.
His Excellency said: “The achievements of this edition bolster the leading position of the exhibitions as platforms specialising in unmanned systems, simulation, and training, which play a pivotal role in strengthening the presence and position of the UAE as a leading global centre for technology and innovation, all in accordance with global trends for adopting the technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and CEO of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and its group of subsidiaries, said: “The fifth edition of UMEX and SimTEX was successful in light of the current exceptional circumstances, as the total area of the two exhibitions increased by 20% compared to the previous edition. In 2022, the number of exhibiting companies reached 141 companies from 27 countries, while the number of visitors to the exhibition reached 15,874, and the number of official delegations increased to 264 official delegations, an increase of 32% compared to the previous edition of the exhibition.”

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and CEO of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC)

Al Dhaheri indicated that ADNEC has appointed a specialised company to conduct a survey to measure the satisfaction of visitors and participants in the activities of the two exhibitions and the accompanying conference, and 92% of the visitors and participants stressed the importance of the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions, and 98% of them expressed their satisfaction with the experience of participation, while 88% of visitors showed interest for their participation in the next edition in 2024, and more than 99% expressed their satisfaction with the precautionary measures that were applied at the event and 99% of them said that they felt safe during their visit, which reflects the efficiency of ADNEC’s work teams and the precautionary measures that it applies in all its efficacy.

Al Dhaheri thanked the Supreme Organizing Committee of the event, and all partners in the government and private sectors for their continuous support, led by the Ministry of Defence and EDGE, the strategic partner of the exhibitions, who worked side by side to make the exhibitions a success and to produce them in a manner that befits the reputation and prestige of the Emirate at regional and international levels.

 
 

Never-before-seen technologies

The third and final days of the exhibitions saw the launch of the live demonstrations at Tilal Swaihan area, which served as a unique platform for showcasing aerial and grounded unmanned systems, AI and robotics technology, and simulation and training systems, with the 15 demonstrations unveiling 22 advanced technologies and new innovations that have never been seen before in the world.

The demonstrations included the ADASI Garmousha, a new-generation drone, and the ADASI QX-2 loitering munitions system for infantry and special forces, which is a drone that can transport weapons with high precision, followed by a demonstration of the Kungsörn drone which is capable of vertical take-off and landing, the Blowfish A3 UAV which can carry heavy loads and operate in difficult environments including oceans and mountains, and the PD-2 unmanned system that provided integrated UAS solutions for military and civilian applications. The demonstrations concluded with a showcase of the Thermite RS3, a robot for extinguishing industrial fires operated by remote belly-pack controllers that provides precise reactions and video feedback that allows manoeuvring in difficult conditions.

UMEX & SimTEX and the accompanying delegations have high strategic position and importance in the agenda of annual events organised and hosted by ADNEC, as the event represents a leading global platform for unmanned systems, training, and simulation experts which contributes to enhancing cooperation, the exchange of knowledge and expertise, and learning about the most important technologies and innovations in these vital sectors.

Since its launch, this event has been contributing to the diversification of national economy in accordance with the goals and aspirations of our wise leadership for the next fifty years in terms of adopting the Fourth Industrial Revolution by enhancing the UAE’s position as a leading global centre for innovation and technology.

UMEX & SimTEX made significant contributions to GDP growth and the diversification of income sources, as technology and unmanned systems contribute to economic growth and provide job opportunities in several sectors in the UAE, in addition to consolidating Abu Dhabi’s leading role in the global business tourism sector in terms of hosting and organizing prominent international exhibitions. The two exhibitions also contribute to increasing strategic investments in advanced and innovative technologies by providing a strategic platform for building active partnerships and enhancing communication among major international players in the unmanned systems, training, and simulation sectors.

UMEX & SimTEX witness signing of deals valued at AED 1.620 billion in first and second days


Abu Dhabi, UAE, 22 February 2022: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces, activities of the fifth edition of UMEX & SimTEX 2022 continued, organised by Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Defence, with wide-scale participation of major companies specialising in unmanned systems, training, and simulation from 26 countries, and unprecedented attendance by high-level official delegations from across the world.

On the second day of the event, the Ministry of Defence announced the signing of three new deals with an overall value of over AED 966.25, compared to deals valued at AED 156.091 million on the second day of the exhibitions in 2020. This brings the total number of deals of the first two days of this year’s edition to six with an overall value of AED 1.620 billion, with an increase of 159% compared to the deals of the first two days in the 2020 edition.

The overall value of deals signed by the Ministry of Defence with local companies participating in UMEX & SimTEX 2022 in its second day amounted to approximately AED 874.174 million, while contracts with foreign companies amounted to AED 92.077 million.

The second day deals include one valued at over AED 874.174 million with International Golden Group for purchasing a drone system, and an AED 46.643 million contract with the American Anduril Industries company for finishing trials related to an anti-drone system, along with a deal valued at around AED 43.434 million with France’s MBDA company for purchasing thermal flares.

This year’s edition hosts several prominent global companies, including the US General Atomics company for aviation systems, the US L3 Harris Technologies, the US Insitu company, France’s NExter Systems, Ukraine’s Ukroboronprom, Italy’s Fincantieri, and China’s ALIT, and many more leading global countries that are launching their latest unmanned systems innovations and technologies at UMEX & SimTEX.

The fifth edition features 15 live shows in the Tilal Swaihan area, showcasing grounded and aerial unmanned systems and AI and robotics technologies, with a total of 22 advanced technologies and innovations in the fields being unveiled at these shows. This edition also features the Modern Technology Track, which takes visitors on a tour showcasing the latest advanced technologies featured at the exhibitions, UMEX talks, the best innovative solutions for challenges, and futurism endeavours in a world with rapid scientific advances and increasing reliance on unmanned systems and AI.

Mansour bin Zayed opens 5th UMEX & SimTEX 2022 featuring 134 companies from 26 countries


ABU DHABI, UAE 21st February, 2022: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, opened today the fifth edition of UMEX & SimTEX 2022, a unique event specialising in unmanned systems, simulation, training, AI, robotics, and multi-use systems for defence and civilian sectors.

The event is organised by Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Defence, The opening was attended by Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence Affairs, Faris Mohammed Ahmed Suhail Al Mazrouei, Adviser at the Ministry of Presidential Affairs, Muhammad Abdullah Al Junaibi, Chairman of the Federal Authority for Protocols and Strategic Narratives, Lt. Gen. Hamad Mohammed Thani Al Rumaithi, Chief of Staff of the UAE Armed Forces, Dr. Ahmed Mubarak Ali Al Mazrouei, Member of the Executive Council and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council Office, Major General Faris Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Commander-in-Chief of Abu Dhabi Police, Dr. Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Community Development, Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and CEO of ADNEC and its group of subsidiaries, and a number of senior officials from government and private entities.

During the first day of the exhibition, the Ministry of Defence signed three deals with local and international companies with a total value of more than AED 654.6 million, distributed among contracts for local companies with a total value of more than AED 649 million, and foreign contracts with a total value exceeding AED 5.597 million. The deals included a deal with International Golden Group to purchase drone systems worth AED 10 million, and another deal with Global Aerospace Logistics to provide technical support, maintenance, repair and spare parts services, with a value of more than AED 639 million. It also included a contract with Denel SOC Ltd, trading as Denel Dynamics in South Africa to provide technical support for aircraft systems with a total value of more than AED 5.597 million.

This year’s edition, which sees the participation of 134 companies from 26 countries, seven of them participating for the first time, has witnessed exceptional and unprecedented growth; the overall space for exhibitors has increased by 25 percent, while new companies participating for the first time make up 36 percent of total exhibitors.

The number of live shows held at Tilal Swaihan area, one of the main activities of the exhibitions, has doubled, with the number of advanced systems showcased in it increasing remarkably, as it is planned for these shows to unveil 22 new technologies and innovative systems that have never been seen before. In a marked development that affirms ADNEC’s commitment to supporting entrepreneurship in vital sectors, the fifth edition of the exhibitions will witness the launch of the UMEX & SimTEX platform for start-ups specialising in this sector, which seeks to empower these start-ups and shed light on their innovations.

Major General Dr. Mubarak Saeed Ghafan Al Jabri, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee for UMEX & SimTEX 2022 and the accompanying conference, said, “This strategic event specialising in unmanned systems, and training and simulation systems, is the only one of its kind in the region, as it plays a pivotal role in supporting the United Arab Emirates’ efforts for consolidating its global leading position by utilising innovations to bolster the economy and national and regional stability. This event is held at a time when we are witnessing global challenges and conditions, shedding light on the UAE’s abilities for organising a strategic event of this importance in the advanced technology and defence industries sector.”

“The exhibitions provide a platform for pioneering experiences that strengthen the UAE’s efforts for showcasing the latest innovations in unmanned systems, supporting its mission of developing national capabilities which empower and support the UAE’s ability to confront challenges of all kinds, placing us among the leading countries that play a pivotal role on regional and international levels. We look forward to the success of this exceptional edition and building upon the success of previous editions,” he added.

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group CEO of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and its group of subsidiaries, said, “This event is considered one of the strategic events that contribute to supporting national efforts to diversify the national economy in line with the goals and aspirations of our wise leadership, and enhances the prestige of our leadership. UMEX and SimTEX augment Abu Dhabi and the UAE as a leading global centre for innovation and technology.”

Al Dhaheri added, “UMEX and SimTEX 2022 are distinguished for their leadership positions on the agenda of events, exhibitions and conferences organised by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company aimed at consolidating the presence of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi as the capital of the business and leisure tourism sectors in the region.”

Al Dhaheri expressed his pride in the ADNEC team, who demonstrated their exceptional capabilities and extensive experience in implementing a global event of this importance, as well as the flexibility of the company’s facilities to support the event in all its details.

Seven new countries are participating in the current edition of the exhibitions: Bahrain, Israel, Serbia, Austria, Bulgaria, Malta, and Turkey, in addition to two new international pavilions: the Israeli and Ukrainian pavilions. The event’s activities include the 15 live shows, which will be held on Wednesday, 23rd February, in the Tilal Swaihan area, during which several new and innovative technologies and systems will be unveiled.

ADNEC rallied its resources and work teams to organise and host an exceptional edition of UMEX & SimTEX 2022, taking all the measures and procedures, which reflect its constant commitment and keenness to protect the health and safety of participants and guests. Its work teams, in cooperation with health and supervisory establishments in the state, applied a wide range of precautionary measures and procedures during the exhibitions and the accompanying conference to ensure the safety of visitors and participants and make sure that the event is held in a healthy and safe environment.

The 5th edition of the UMEX SimTEX Conference kicks off today

Abu Dhabi, UAE, 20 February 2022: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces, the fifth edition of the Unmanned Systems Conference 2022 that accompanies UMEX & SimTEX exhibitions 2022 kicked off today at Abu Dhabi under the theme is “Unmanned, Unbound: Realizing The Promise of The Unmanned Revolution.”

The conference, organised by Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Defence, brings together intellectual leaders, high-level officials, and academic figures from all over the world, with 2,000 experts and specialists participating in person and virtually.

The conference included four seminars featuring 22 high-level speakers from across the world, including ministers, leaders, and innovators, who discussed several topics and issues related to the unmanned systems sector. The seminars focused on four main themes, which are Understanding the Changing Unmanned Landscape, Facilitating Trust and Understanding: Human-Machine Teaming and Decision-Making in the Unmanned Age, Optimizing Innovation: Overcoming Adoption and Integration Challenges, and Unmanned Systems and the 4IR: How Technology is Shaping Future Capabilities.

His Excellency Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defense Affairs, His Excellency Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications opened the conference in the presence of, Her Excellency Mariya Didi, Minister of Defense of the Republic of Maldives, His Excellency João Ernesto dos Santos, Minister of Defense of Angola, His Royal Highness Lieutenant-General Turki bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Commander of the Royal Saudi Air Force, His Excellency Eng. Awaidha Murshed Al Marar, Chairman of the Department of Energy, Major General Dr. Mubarak Saeed Ghafan Al Jabri, head of the UMEX and SimTEX 2022 higher organising committee, and Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and CEO of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) Group, in addition to top-ranking attendees from participating delegations.

In his opening speech, His Excellency Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi welcomed the participating delegations to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE the home of tolerance, peace, opportunities, and innovations, saying: “Unmanned systems and drones have become synonymous with the real and unprecedented technological revolutions that is putting the future in our hands, and in the UAE, they are a main pillar for achieving the vision of our wise leadership’s vision represented in the Principles of 50 which are based on building the best and highest-growing economy in the world, and strengthen the positive reputation and global stature of the UAE.

“This strategic conference is being organised today in spite of the global challenges and exceptional circumstances in the region sheds light on the capabilities and resources of the UAE, emphasising its pivotal role in enhancing the security and stability of the region, and its efforts for moving forward with developing its advanced technology system to build deterring power, and a security and defence sector that achieves tranquillity and peace,” His Excellency added.

His Excellency said: “The importance of this conference lies in the fact that it is a scientific platform that brings together expertise and skills, that contributes to developing national capabilities, relaying our message to the world which affirms that the UAE is able to confront all challenges, and to realise the aspirations of its leadership and the ambitions of its people to occupy a prominent position among the best countries in the world in all fields, as well as confirming its commitment to developing its capabilities for producing unmanned systems and drones to bolster its defensive capabilities and support its national economy.”

“There is a considerable danger posed by the fact that drones have become a weapon preferred by terrorist groups to their low cost of production, efficiency, effectiveness, and ease of procurement, particularly if there are regimes and countries sponsoring them. Drones can play a number of roles associated with traditional fighter planes, like monitoring, reconnaissance, and aerial attacks, so their use is starting to affect the concepts of credo of aerial operations and defence,” he added.

“Despite the scientific and technological advances that unmanned systems represent, they also entail unprecedented threats and challenges, which is why we must double our efforts to protect international legitimacy and realize international peace and security, and to work together to keep the wheel of progress and prosperity moving forward for the sake of our future generations by elevating our creativity to confront challenges, foster trust and awareness in human interaction with smart machines, and make the right decisions in this unmanned age,” His Excellency concluded.

During his main speech of the opening session, H.E. Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications commented, “Today more than ever, we understand the importance of safeguarding our nations by ensuring that these technologies are tools that we can use other than tools that be used against us. But as with all tools throughout history, and with all technologies that has been advanced, we realise as well that they’re not perfect.”

“The first challenge is unnamed systems give us today the urge to increase escalation, especially when we deploy with artificial intelligence. These systems make us feel that there are no humans on the battleground, that we can continue to escalate and push things aggressively forward without thinking of the precautions. If we add artificial intelligence to the mix, in most cases they are going to push for escalation without thinking of certainly variables like strengths and weaknesses. The second challenge, is that fact these systems are much more cheaper and accessible than ever before. At that accessibility, it allows for these systems to fall into the hands of the people that we do not want them to get in the hands of, terrorist groups that can use to terrorise civilians and to impact the global system in a negative way.

His Excellency continued, “The third challenge is the fact that when these systems are deployed with artificial intelligence, have one major disadvantage, which is the fact that they use historical data to plan for the future, so we need to consistently keep the human in the loop. The final challenge is what we are moving into a world of have and have-nots, and that world is going to create a world of discrepancy that might lead people to extremes to ensure that they are still relevant in the battlefield.”

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group CEO of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), said: “We witnessed the launch of the conference, organised by ADNEC and in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense in the UAE, in the presence of experts, academic researchers and global thought leaders to exchange views, in the unmanned systems sector.”

He noted that the event contributes to strengthening the position of the UAE as a distinguished global destination for hosting conferences specialised in unmanned systems, simulation systems and training.

“The organisation of these events comes in accordance with ADNEC’s strategy to support vital and promising sectors and enhance the competitiveness of national companies at local and international levels, in addition to transferring and localising advanced knowledge in the country.” Al Dhaheri stated.

UMEX SimTEX Conference 2022 kicks off tomorrow

Abu Dhabi, UAE, 19 February 2022: Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX) and the Simulation Training (SimTEX) Conference is set to kick off tomorrow morning, bringing together elite experts and specialists from around the world to the ADNOC Business Centre physically and virtually.

The conference will convene some of the top experts, decision-makers, academia and government officials, from the unmanned systems sector and will discuss four main topics. “Understanding the Changing Unmanned Landscape; Facilitating Trust and Understanding: Human-Machine Teaming and Decision-Making in the Unmanned Age; Optimizing Innovation: Overcoming Adoption and Integration Challenges; and Unmanned Systems and the 4IR: How Technology is Shaping Future Capabilities.”

The event will see large-scale international participation, as it will feature 22 speakers and will host 500 participants who will be present in person at the ADNOC Business Centre, while around 1,500 people are expected to attend the conference virtually. This shows the UAE’s standing as a unique international destination for hosting conferences on unmanned systems and simulation and training systems.

The conference will take place prior to UMEX and SimTEX 2022, which will be held on February 21-23, organised by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense, focusing on the theme of the “Unmanned, Unbound: Realising the Promise of The Unmanned Revolution”.

The previous edition of UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions and conference held in 2020 witnessed a very high turnout, with considerable local and international participation by exhibitors, visitors and media.

Meeting for diplomatic missions’ representatives held in UAE for UMEX and SimTEX 2022

The Higher Organising Committee of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX) and Simulation and Training Exhibition (SimTEX) 2022 and its accompanying conference, which will be held under the kind patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, held a meeting for representatives of diplomatic missions accredited to the UAE today. The meeting shed light on the activities and agenda of the two exhibitions and conference, taking place from February 20-23.

Diplomatic figures and high-level officials attended the meeting, and were briefed on the event’s preparations and procedures. The meeting focused on the role of the exhibitions in developing the unmanned systems and the simulation and training sectors in the UAE, as well as their role in contributing to the development regional and international levels.

ADNEC is organising UMEX and SimTEX 2022 in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Defense, with the support of Edge Group, strategic partner, and Tawazun Economic Council, the headline sponsor of the accompanying conference.

Participants in the meeting discussed the most important fields that UMEX and SimTEX will be focusing on including innovations and technologies in the unmanned systems, simulation, and training sectors, as well as AI and robotics technologies. It is expected that the event will witness a considerable international turnout, which will include government delegations and a number of agencies, entities, and civil establishments specialising in these vital sectors.

The meeting touched on the details of the conference held prior to the exhibitions on 20 February, bringing together international leaders, experts, and officials in these sectors to discuss the main theme – “Unmanned, Unbound: Realising the Promise of the Unmanned Revolution.”

Speaking for Major General Dr. Mubarak Saeed Ghafan Al Jabri, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee, Brigadier General Staff Pilot Mohamed Obaid Rashid Al Marshoodi, Deputy Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee, said during the meeting: “UMEX and SimTEX 2022 continue to bolster their strategic position in terms of strengthening and developing all sectors that are based on technology, innovation, and AI. This vital event has become a global platform for showcasing the latest unmanned systems and the simulation and training systems.”

He added: “Welcoming the participation of international leaders, missions, and key players, these exhibitions play a vital role in strengthening the UAE’s position as a global centre for advanced technologies and innovation in line with global trends in these specialised sectors. Our partnership with the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), the organiser of this event, contributes to consolidating this event’s leading position.”

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Group CEO of ADNEC, said: “The fifth edition of UMEX and SimTEX reflects the distinguished international position that it has been able to achieve since its first launch in 2014. ADNEC is currently finalising its preparations for the successful organisation of this event in cooperation with its partners in the public and private sectors in accordance with the aspirations of the wise leadership and in a manner befitting the UAE’s reputation at the regional levels. The two exhibitions are expected to attract the participation of major specialised international companies, experts and decision-makers from all over the world, despite the exceptional circumstances the world is currently going through.”

Al Dhaheri indicated that the current edition would witness participation from countries and national pavilions for the first time. In addition, the number of new accompanying events and live demonstrations of various equipment and systems, will embodies the strategy of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company to develop and support existing exhibitions in a number of promising sectors and work continuously to transfer and localise advanced knowledge of the country, in order to support national industries in these vital sectors, enhance their competitiveness, and open the way for partnerships with major international specialised companies.

“ADNEC is committed to applying safety procedures of the highest standards to ensure the health and safety of all participants in the exhibitions, employing preventative measures and protocols that follow local and international health directives, serving as a role model in the sector, and allowing specialists to convene and exchange expertise in a secure and safe environment.” Al Dhaheri concluded.

The meeting discussed the conference accompanying the exhibitions, held under the theme “Unmanned, Unbound: Realizing the Promise of the Unmanned Revolution,” which will feature 22 speakers and will host 500 participants who will be present in person at the ADNOC Business Centre, while around 1,500 people are expected to attend the conference virtually. This emphasises the UAE’s standing as a unique international destination for hosting conferences on unmanned systems and simulation and training systems.

For more details, please visit: https://umexabudhabi.ae/
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The fifth edition of UMEX and SimTEX 2022 Conference kicks off in February


Abu Dhabi, UAE, 13 January 2022: Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, the fifth edition of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX) and the Simulation Training (SimTEX) Conference is set to kick off on 20 February, bringing together elite experts and specialists from around the world to the ADNOC Business Centre physically and virtually.

The conference, organised by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in partnership with the Tawazun Economic Council and in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense, will focus on the theme of the “Unmanned, Unbound: Realising the Promise of The Unmanned Revolution”.

The conference will take place prior to UMEX, SimTEX, and ISNR 2022 exhibitions, held on February 21-23.

The conference will convene some of the top experts, decision-makers, academia and government officials, from the unmanned systems sector, bolstering the UAE’s position as a global destination for hosting distinguished events that highlight the latest scientific and technological developments in these industries, in addition to showcasing best practices in these ever-emerging sectors.

The conference will discuss and explore four main topics. These include Understanding the Changing Unmanned Landscape; Unmanned Systems and the 4IR: How Technology is Shaping Future Capabilities; Facilitating Trust and Understanding: Human-Machine Teaming and Decision-Making in the Unmanned Age; and Optimizing Innovation: Overcoming Adoption and Integration Challenges.
Ministers and officials from around the world will be participating in the Conference, most notably His Excellency Mohammed Ahmed Al Bowardi, UAE Minister of State for Defense Affairs, His Excellency Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Teleworking Applications, and Prof. Mérouane Debbah, Chief Researcher, AI and Telecommunication Systems at the Technology Innovation Institute.

The Conference serves as an ideal platform for participants and attendees to gain a better understanding of the challenges faced by humanity today and the solutions and opportunities provided by the fourth industrial revolution, whilst also highlighting the advanced contributions of unmanned systems technologies and their potential.

Saeed Al Mansoori, Executive Director of Capital Events, a subsidiary of ADNEC, said: “Organising this conference supports ADNEC’s contribution to transferring and localising knowledge and attracting international experts in the unmanned systems sector, encouraging innovation and knowledge transfer.”

Al Mansoori added: “This conference is a leading platform that brings together decision-makers, pioneers, and experts under one roof in Abu Dhabi and the considerable turnout of experts and pioneers from around the world showcases the international community’s confidence in Abu Dhabi as a safe global destination for business. This event also sheds light on ADNEC’s efforts to improve this vital sector, reinforcing its strategic enabler of the business tourism sector in Abu Dhabi.”

Dr. Yehya Mohamed Al Marzouqi, Chairman of the Conference’s Organizing Committee, said: “We are proud to be hosting some of the top leaders, experts, and decision-makers in the unmanned systems sector for the 5th edition of UMEX and SimTEX 2022 Conference. This event is a unique platform that provides participants and attendees with the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the challenges faced by humanity today and the solutions and opportunities provided by the fourth industrial revolution.”
“We look forward to the Conference’s fifth edition where we will shed light on the advanced contributions of unmanned systems technologies and how they can reach their full potential in the coming decade,” Al Marzouqi added.

Mona Ahmed Al Jaber, Director of Corporate Communication at Tawazun Economic Council, said: “Holding this conference aligns with our efforts to support the sustainable development of these strategic industries, contributing to technology and knowledge transfer, supporting innovation, and encouraging active involvement in the fourth industrial revolution.”

“Tawazun is well aware of the importance of developing competitive products in the unmanned and remote-controlled operating systems, and the Council is committed to partnering with international companies to train UAE talents, enabling them to positively contribute to the development of the industrial sector and national products based on advanced technologies,” Al Jaber added.

The previous edition of UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions and conference held in 2020 witnessed a very high turnout, with considerable local and international participation by exhibitors, visitors and media.

ENDS

Registration is now open for UMEX and SimTEX 2022

The Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Company (ADNEC) has announced that registration is now open to local and international exhibitors, members of the media and visitors to the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX 2022) and the Simulation Training Exhibition (SimTEX 2022).

Organised by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Defense, the two exhibitions & their accompanying conference will take place at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC) from February 21-23, 2022.

UMEX and SimTEX are considered the only events in the region dedicated to unmanned systems, simulation, training, AI, robotics, and mixed-use systems in the defense and civilian sectors. The two exhibitions are of strategic importance on the calendar of events organized by ADNEC. The events will build on the success of the previous Unmanned Systems Exhibition and Conference and ADNEC is preparing to welcome an impressive edition of UMEX in 2022, with a broader scope. The upcoming edition will include a stronger focus on Simulation and Training Exhibition (SIMTEX), reflecting the sustained growth in investment by the UAE and the world.

The two exhibitions attract a group of experts, decision-makers, senior officials and academics, as well as major international companies and regional and global partners from the public and private sectors. The aim of the event is to discuss and review the latest global technologies and advanced solutions to confront security challenges, in addition to the latest innovations in the business sectors that are witnessing rapid changes and developments on the regional and global levels.

To register for UMEX and SimTEX, please click here.

UMEX and SimTEX 2020 Concludes the Biggest Edition in its History with Total Value of Deals of approximately AED 749,081,718

Under the Patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, the 4th Edition of UMEX and SimTEX and the accompanying conference, concluded today at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Centre, facilitating a huge number of trade deals valued at approximately AED 749,081,718 during the three day event. The event also drew 25,981 visitors.

UMEX and SimTEX 2020, organised by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in collaboration with the General Headquarters, GHQ, of the UAE Armed Forces, provided international visitors, including regional government delegations, civil entities and other sector-specialised agencies and organisations, with an overview of the latest innovations, technologies and security equipment. The exhibitions addressed the most prominent fields in which artificial intelligence and unmanned vehicles and systems are used, in order to achieve goals that serve the environment and humanity alike.

His Excellency Major General Staff Pilot Ali Mohammed Musleh Al Ahbabi, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying conference, said: “This edition of the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions achieved remarkable success and received praises from all companies and exhibitors, and this success would not have been achieved without the great support that the exhibition received from our wise leadership. We witnessed significant growth in the numbers of visitors and the number of deals that were signed, in addition to the great willingness of international companies to participate along with the organisation of several huge events in conjunction such as the Mohamed bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge organised by Khalifa University and the Series of Artificial Intelligence Competitions organised by the Ministry of Education, which confirms the leading global position that the exhibitions have reached during a short period of time.”

Al Ahbabi thanked the Ministry of Defense and the General Headquarters, GHQ, of the UAE Armed Forces for their unlimited support along with the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and all the teams who worked in cooperation with all national institutions that are members of the Organising Committee, who worked with the spirit of one team to succeed in organising the exhibitions to bring them out in a manner that supports the reputation and position of the UAE at both regional and international levels.

His Excellency Al Ahbabi confirmed: “UMEX and SimTEX are in line with the UAE’s vision and Strategy for the Future, to promote the advancement of innovation and support the goals of the ‘2020: Towards the next 50’ initiative by elevating future technologies, which affect economy, education, infrastructure, and healthcare industries across the UAE. The events also promote the UAE’s position as a global hub for technology and innovation, in line with the global trends towards embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

“Both exhibitions shed light on the latest innovations and technologies in front of a global audience, which included delegations, experts and specialists in these sectors from all around the world. It is also worth noting that we witnessed a noticeable increase in the number of national companies exhibiting in this session, as it helped in exposing them and paved the way for them to showcase their latest innovations and products in front of decision makers and specialists, which enhances the competitiveness of these companies and their ability to access new markets around the world.”

His Excellency Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer, ADNEC said: “The 4th and largest edition of UMEX and SimTEX cemented its leading and prestigious position at various local, regional and global levels. Both exhibitions play a major role in promoting UAE’s status as an international hub for technology and innovation in line with the global trends toward embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

His Excellency added: “The great success witnessed by UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions could not have been achieved without the support of our wise leadership and its guidance that contributed to advancing the reality and future of the business tourism sector in the country, by supporting existing exhibitions and conferences, and enhancing their competitiveness and ability to attract major international companies specialised in various Economic sectors.”

His Excellency further commented: “The 4th edition of both exhibitions and accompanying conference achieved record results, including; increase in the number of exhibiting companies to 166, with a growth rate of 38% compared to the previous edition in 2018, and local exhibiting companies have increased to 66, which count for 40% of total exhibitors. The total area of ​​the exhibitions increased by 50% to reach 25,500 square meters, compared to the area for ​​the previous edition of the exhibitions. The two exhibitions attracted more than 25,981 visitors from all over the world, with a growth rate of more than 116% compared to the previous edition. Additionally, the number of participants in the UMEX and SimTEX Conference, held on the 22nd of February, have reached 1,600 participants, achieving an increase of 433% compared to previous edition. “ Al Dhaheri confirmed: “Organising the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, in conjunction with the Mohamed bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge and the series of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Competitions, emphasises the flexibility of the facilities of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre and the platforms it provides for internal and external exhibitions in addition to the marine display platforms. The great demand that we have witnessed by specialised international companies to participate in the two exhibitions is a living testimony to the success of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company in supporting national events in various economic sectors, as part of its strategy to advance the reality and future of this vital sector, and to confirm the position of Abu Dhabi as the capital of a business tourism in the region.” Al Dhaheri thanked the Ministry of Defense, the General Headquarters, GHQ, of the UAE Armed Forces, all national entities, partners from the public and private sectors, sponsors, and supporters of this event in the country, for their exceptional efforts in organising this global event, and enhancing its position at the regional and international levels.

 

11 deals signed during the 3rd day of the exhibitions with a total value that exceeds AED 124 million

The General Headquarters, GHQ, of the UAE Armed Forces announced during a press conference held at the end of the third day of UMEX and SimTEX 2020, that the total deals reached AED 749,081,718 since the launch of the two exhibitions, with 11 new deals signed today (Tuesday) with local and international companies with a total value of more than AED 124 million.  Staff Brigadier Pilot Tareq Mohammed Al Bannai, spokesperson of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, revealed during the press conference: “The total foreign contract deals on the third day reached AED 3,041,244, while the total number of local contracts deals amounted to AED 121,077,815.

 

Al Bannai also confirmed that a contract was signed with “State Foreign Trade Enterprises” (Ukraine) to provide technical assistance for drones at a value of AED 3,041,244 and “International Golden Group” to purchase drones worth AED 33,352,936 dirhams, and Al Fattan Shipbuilding Company to purchase maritime targets on behalf of the General Headquarters, GHQ, of the UAE Armed Forces at a value AED 18,183,830.

 

Al Bannai added that “Ahmed Al Mazrouei Metal Industries” Company has been contracted to purchase electronic systems and land targets for the General Headquarters, GHQ, of the UAE Armed Forces at a value of AED 20,273,030, Microsoft Gulf for the Ministry of Interior with a value of AED 1,733,632 and technology projects solutions company for the Ministry of Interior with a value of AED 1,498,750.

 

He pointed out that the Emirates Photography and Marketing Company was contracted on behalf of the Ministry of Interior at a value of AED 31,287,995 and the Emirates Alliance for Technical Solutions for the Ministry of Interior with a value of AED 1,547,022, Gulf Business Machines (GBM) for the Ministry of Interior with a value of AED 4,640,000 and AGI 4S for security solutions on behalf of the Ministry of Interior, with a value of AED 7,064,620 and for the Emirates Fire and Rescue Company, on behalf of the Ministry of Interior, for a value of AED 1,496,000.

 

In parallel to the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions, key events were held including the UMEX and SimTEX Live Indoor Demonstrations at ADNEC and the Live Flying Demonstrations at Tilal Swaihan, allowing many international exhibitors and participants to show the actual capabilities and characteristics of their unmanned products in practice.

The live demonstrations proved very popular with the Indoor Live Demonstrations taking place at ADNEC and the Flying Demonstrations taking place at Tilal Swaihan. The indoor live demonstrations involved Falcon Robotics showcasing their “Shaheen” system and Al Tuff showcasing there “Spur” System.

The flying demonstrations at Tilal Swaihan took place on the second day of the event with great success and saw ADAISI showcase their “S-100” and “SDO-50 V2” systems, MP3 showcase their “ISR 350-5” system, Ziyan showcase their “Blowfish A3”  system and Shenzhen showcase their KWT GX360-E system.

Other events taking place are the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC), organised by Khalifa University and the Series of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Competitions.

The Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC), organised by Khalifa University, was launched in 2015 as a major international robotics competition that will be held in Abu Dhabi every two years, offering prizes worth a total of USD 5 million.

MBZIRC 2020, attracted state-of-the-art AI solutions and autonomous aerial and ground robots, consisted of three challenges and a triathlon type Grand Challenge, all focusing on innovating robotic solutions for smart city applications.

Challenges addressed in the MBZIRC 2020 included capturing and neutralising intruder UAVs, extinguishing a series of simulated fires, and prompt response in emergencies in urban high-rise buildings. A total of 34 teams and nearly 500 researchers, representing the best robotic systems laboratories and accounting for 10% of 100 international universities, were involved in these challenges.

As for the “Series of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Competitions”, launched in 2015, and its 6th edition, which is witnessed the participation of more than 6,700 Emirati school students, was organised with the aim of building a sustainable educational platform that plays a major role in activating robot laboratories and promoting innovation, cooperation and international competition in the field of robotics and artificial intelligence, and raising the level and scale of global participation in the field of advanced skills in the areas of creative and technological design.

Competitors from various educational levels of UAE public and private school students at the state level replaced engineering books and technology sites to participate in the 6th edition of the Series of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Competitions. All participating students diligently worked to develop the coding language, fix robotic arms, install cameras, print 3D palm trees among others, with the aim of winning the competitions and finding the best solutions to contemporary problems and winning the title “Champion of the Series”.

The series featured a pack of national and international competitions in the fields of programming, robotics and technological innovation, with winners getting the opportunity to represent the UAE in 10 international competitions. The 2020 series competition will included four categories: The first focused on international robotics competitions featuring Four First National Competitions, Five RoboCup Junior and Five VEX Robotics competitions. This category is strategically designed to engage all students, from kindergarten to university levels, making the UAE the only country around the world to organise these three international competitions under one roof. The second category included the GPC national programming contests, consisting of four different programming languages, namely: Python, C++, Web and Tynker. Moreover, the third category presented the STEAM Robotics Innovation competition. The newly added fourth category is the international remote control competitions, which included three international competitions in the fields of remote control, which is the “Harazin” competition for hydrogen cars, “Drones” competition for airplanes, and “ROV” for submarines.

UMEX and SIMTEX 2020 are ideally positioned to provide a professional platform shedding the light on the ecological, environmental, civil and humanitarian benefits of unmanned systems and simulation and training, and showcase many of their benefits, such as increasing flexibility and the reduction of capital and operational costs. Some common uses for unmanned technologies and systems include: Mapping forest fires, upgrading agricultural monitoring techniques, weather monitoring, telecommunications, aerial photography/mapping, film production, oil and gas exploration and more.

Deals for First and Second Days of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 Exceed AED 624 million

The UAE Armed Forces announced today during a press conference held at the end of the second day of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX) and the Simulation and Training Exhibition (SimTEX) 2020, that the total deals signed since the opening of the exhibitions has exceeded AED 624,962,659. There were seven new deals signed today (Monday) with total value exceeding AED 468 million of local and external deals.

“The total value of external deals reached AED 25,821,190,” said Staff Brigadier Fahad Nasser Al Thehli, spokesman for the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, “whilst the total local contract deals amounted to AED 443,049,964 , representing 94 per cent of total deals signed in the second day.”

Staff Brigadier Fahad Nasser Al Thehli, spokesman for the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, confirmed that contracts were signed with the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments Company (ADASI) to purchase drone systems at a value of AED 180,426,908 , in addition to a contract to supply the Armed Forces with new unmanned Helicopters “Camcopter S-100” at a value of AED 234 million.

Al Thehli added that a contract was signed with Denel Dynamics from South Africa to purchase drones at the value of AED 25,821,190, and a contract with EARTH to purchase unmanned vehicles at a value of AED 22,573,056. Additionally, Al Awael Company was contracted to supply simulations and training system for firefighting on behalf of the Abu Dhabi Police at a value of AED 3.2 million.

Al Thehli also pointed out that the I ON Technology Company was contracted to purchase a simulation system to detect explosives for Abu Dhabi Police at a value of AED 2.3 million, and another contract with Power Drone Company to supply three drones for firefighting for the Abu Dhabi Police at a vale of AED 550,000.

Deals on the first day of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exceed AED 156 million

The UAE Armed Forces announced the signing of five deals with a total combined value of over AED 156,000,000. The contracts were announced during a press conference, held at the end of the first day of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX) and the Simulation and Training Exhibition (SimTEX) 2020.

“The total value of external deals reached AED 90,575,681,” said Staff Brigadier Tareq Mohammed Al Bannai, spokesman for the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, “whilst the total local contract deals amounted to AED 65,515,824.”

Staff Brigadier Tareq Mohammed Al Bannai, spokesman for the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, confirmed that the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments Company (ADASI) struck a contract to purchase unmanned UAVs at a value of AED 55,128,014, and the Emirati company, EARTH, will purchase unmanned vehicles worth AED 10,387,810.

Staff Brigadier Al Bannai also pointed out that the US company, Insitu, was contracted to provide technical support for unmanned UAVs, at a value of AED 50,257,883, and the Ukrainian State Foreign Trade Enterprise will buy UAVs, worth AED 2,626,195. The United Kingdom also signed a deal, targeting the purchase of air systems worth AED 37,691,603 from Caintech.

UMEX and SimTEX Conference 2020 Kicked Off Today

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense and the Supreme Command of the UAE Armed Forces, organized the UMEX and SimTEX Conference today, under the theme ‘Manned-Unmanned Teaming in the Age of Smart Systems’, in the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.

 

The conference discussed innovative solutions to current challenges, the future in a world of rapid scientific developments and innovations and increased dependence on unmanned systems and artificial intelligence. It also addressed the latest scientific and technological developments in these fields, and created a platform for experts to share and exchange best practices. Moreover, the conference provided audience and speakers with an opportunity to explore and develop a better understanding of the daunting challenges facing humanity today.

The Conference was inaugurated with an opening of speech by His Excellency Mohammed bin Ahmad Al Bawardi, Minister of State for Defense Affairs, in the attendance of His Excellency Hussain Bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, UAE Minister of Education, His Excellency Hakob Arshakyan, Minister of high-tech industry, Republic of Armenia, Lieutenant General Tim Keating, Executive Advisor Defense & Security, Kearney and Former Chief of Defense Force New Zealand, and a number of high-ranked military staff.

In his opening remarks, HE Al Bawardi said: “I am pleased to welcome you to the UMEX and SimTEX conference and exhibition, located in the United Arab Emirates; the home of will and ambition; the home of progress and creativity; the home of science and effort; and the home of tolerance, peace and openness.”

He continued: “We are proud to belong to this land, which, first thanks to God and then it’s wise and visionary leadership and its open politics, has become a model for cooperation, with its achievements and impressive successes across various fields, in alliance with our partners and friendly nations of the world.

This is reflected in the UAE’s advanced competitiveness in various sectors, as we work with interest and cooperation for the common benefit of all. Welcome to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE, and welcome to work together for a bright tomorrow for the future generations. The UAE has become the destination and venue for the world’s most important conferences and international exhibitions, with the aim of discussing the various human, environmental, economic, technological, security issues.”

 

 

 

HE Al Bawardi added: “The UAE is determined to be a workshop to prepare for the future, and to become the capital of the future, dedicating its efforts and resources for this goal. UMEX and SimTEX 2020 is be the preferred platform for research into unmanned systems and simulation and training systems as well as port security. One of the most prominent features of the era of artificial intelligence and digital technology, which in turn spawned the Fourth Industrial Revolution, was that it revolutionized technological development, accelerating advancement in human life. Machines and inventions are almost beyond human control, increasing the challenges and increasing the fears of technology becoming a double-edged weapon in their harmful uses.”

He further commented saying: “The UAE has recognized the importance of anticipating events, looking ahead and preparing for the future. I take this opportunity to call on all countries to work together to meet the challenges and harness the advanced technology to serve humanity and to advance the prospects for our future generations instead of being involved in conflicts and disputes. The conference is an ideal platform for meeting and sharing experiences, as well as unleashing creativity and innovation to develop new inventions, as well as identifying uses and developing common strategies to face threats from the misuse of this technology, which will inevitably harm the interests and security of our societies.

HE Al Bawardi concluded by saying: “What we need today is to define the role of humans in their interaction with these machines and systems of all kinds, especially in light of the increasing uses of artificial intelligence by establishing controls, laws and systems of use. The use of unmanned systems has become multi-purpose and includes civil, security and military uses across land, sea and air transport, media, monitoring, traffic regulation, urban and remote area security and forest fires. In the era of the digital economy, it is well known that investment in future technology has become the most important area of investment, making a difference in the future progress and prosperity of countries. The United Arab Emirates aims to be a leader in the fields of artificial intelligence and developing the uses of unmanned systems. It aims at achieving security, stability and serving humanity wherever they are.

The conference attracted leading experts, academic researchers and global thought leaders to exchange views and explore the challenges and opportunities that have emerged as a result of artificial intelligence and the fourth industrial revolution. It also focused on the advanced participation of the unmanned systems technologies and their role in achieving its full capacity throughout the upcoming decade.

The conference agenda consisted of four keynote sessions and four panel discussions that hosted a group of 23 national and international speakers from 11 countries, holding discussion under four main themes, namely: Human Dimension, Missions and Operations, Industry and Market, and Border Security. The Human Dimensions theme addressed the human aspects of the unmanned systems and the mutual roles of manned and unmanned systems in the age of autonomy.

His Excellency Hakob Arshakyan, Minister of high-tech industry, Republic of Armenia, delivered the first Keynote session titled “The Human Dimensions of Unmanned Systems”.

During His Excellency’s speech, Arshakyan said: “Cyber security, artificial intelligence and robotics play a crucial role in the development of modern defense industries and ensure efficient processing, but the world is constantly changing, and so must we. We must continue to develop our human capacity and skills to continue to develop better technologies that serve us.”

HE Arshakyan added: “We are certain that the unmanned systems, simulation, training, and artificial intelligence sectors must evolve in parallel with each other, as we seek to serve global peace and further advance humankind,” he added.

The first Panel Discussion “The Human Dimension: Manned-Unmanned Teaming in the Age of Autonomy” was moderated by Naoufer Ramoul, TV Anchor & Producer, Dubai Media, and drew the participation of esteemed panelists; Lieutenant General Tim Keating, Executive Advisor Defense & Security, Kearney and Former Chief of Defense Force New Zealand, Dr Arif Al Hammadi, Executive Vice President Khalifa University of Science Technology, Basel Shuhaiber, CEO of Marakeb Technologies, Oussama Khatib, Roboticist, Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University.

This panel discussion highlighted the incorporation of autonomy in new technology systems and teaming up between manned and unmanned systems to enable better decision making through gathering data. The panel also discussed the ethical and moral considerations and mechanism that have to be considered in the development of unmanned systems. The distinguished speakers also addressed the challenges of innovation and creativity and how the UAE is working towards mentoring a new generation of youth capable of solving future challenges.

For the second theme, the conference discussed Missions and Operations, examining the role of unmanned systems in supporting multi-domain operations, in addition to missions and operations in line with the Fourth Industrial Revolution. His Excellency Hussain Bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, UAE Minister of Education, delivered the second Keynote session titled “Missions and Operations in light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. In his speech, His Excellency said: “We are witnessing a significant leap from the Third Industrial Revolution to the Fourth Industrial Revolution, through the development of technology, human capital and the skills required. To keep pace with these ongoing developments, we have been transforming and developing the curriculum in the UAE by introducing technological elements to enhance awareness and understand the best ways to benefit from the applications of these technologies.”

HE Al Hammadi added: “Autonomous systems have given us the potential and the capability, but we must continue to develop youth skills within the educational framework and implement them at an early stage through various competitions such as the Mohammed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge. There are many applications being developed in medicine, automobiles, and smart factories that we will continue to incorporate into our learning methods to make the most of them and ensure that we have a bright and sustainable future.”

The second Panel Discussion “Unmanned Systems Role in Supporting Multi-Domain Operations” was moderated by Mr. Mohannad Al Khatib, Anchor and Reporter, Sky news Arabia, and drew the participation of the panelists; Ismail Abdulla, CEO of Strata Manufacturing PJSC, PROF.LOW KIN HUAT, Programme Director, Air Traffic Management Research Institute Professor Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Anna-Karin, CEO of Saab Ltd Abu Dhabi, Tate Nurkin, Founder and CEO OTH Intelligence Group.

This panel discussed the important contributions of industry, high tech industry and academia in supporting Multi-Domain Operations and the importance of allowing the industry to express itself innovatively. The discussion also encompassed the ability of unmanned technology to enhance yield and improve efficiencies for the end user, understanding what the human and the artificial role is within the wider application of the technology to improve our quality of life.

The third theme at UMEX and SimTEX 2020 special conference covered the future of the unmanned systems sector and the integration and interoperability of unmanned systems. The keynote session titled “The Future of Unmanned System Industry” was delivered by Lieutenant General Tim Keating, Executive Advisor Defense & Security, Kearney and Former Chief of Defense Force New Zealand.

In his speech, Lt. Gen. Keating said: Values and ethics continue to form the basis of any human decisions. Without the restrictions that humans place on these technologies and systems, they are very dangerous if they become the primary technologies that are relied upon in combat”.

Lt. Gen. further added: Keating added: “Unmanned systems have become the primary option for countries to use in combat situations, and with a growing competitive industry, these systems become widely available at affordable and effective prices. This will also continue to develop the applications of these technologies to not only be used in the defense industry, but also for commercial use.”

The third Panel Discussion “Integration and Interoperability of Unmanned Systems” was moderated by Tate Nurkin, Founder and CEO OTH Intelligence Group, and drew participation of; Dr Stephen Bruder, Associate Professor Electrical Engineering Department Embry –Riddle Aeronautical University, Bashar Kilani, IBM, James Walter, Jaime Walters, Senior Technical Direction, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems and Khalid Al Breiki is the President of the Mission Support cluster, EDGE.

This panel explored academia’s role in the development of unmanned systems and the need to foster the next generation to grow and think of solutions to problems that don’t even exist yet. The panel discussed in depth issues of warfare and cyber security, thinking about policing, logistics and manufacturing, and encouraging the audience to think about their engagement with 4th Industrial Revolution technologies in a different way.

Finally, border security has been added to this year’s conference as a fourth theme and as one of the main topics for debate and discussions. It is one of the new topics at the conference where experts and decision makers on the border security sector will discuss the implications of the digital age on joint action in ports and border security as well as its new intellectual approach in the light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The fourth Keynote session titled “Collaborative frame- work for border security in digital world” was delivered by Major General Ahmed Bin Thani, Assistant Commander in Chief of Ports Affairs – UAE, where he said: “I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be able to speak at such an event and have been listening with intent with the amazing ideas, concepts and experiences that we have been exposed to today”.

He added: “The development of border security technology comes at a time when threats become more diverse and difficult to monitor. The growing use of unmanned systems to monitor border movements, through the speedy processing of data, make our borders safer. The challenges include limiting the use of technologies for illegal purposes, and although it’s impossible to fully control the use of this technology it’s imperative that we understand the different ways that it could be misused.”

The fourth Panel Discussion “New narratives for border security in light of Fourth Industrial Revolution” was moderated by Dr. Mohammad Hamad AL Kuwaiti, Executive Advisor, The Supreme Council for National Security, and attended by Peng Xiao, CEO of Group 42, James Morse, President Rabdan Academy, Nicholas Holmes, Public Safety & Policing Global Leader – IBM, Ewan Duncan, Senior Advisor Defense &Security AT Kearney.

This panel underscored the critical importance of the deployment of unmanned technologies and it’s legislation to deal with the ever changing threats to border security, emphasizing the need for a flexible scalable architecture to combat these border challenges. They highlighted the need for organizations to cooperate to provide a seamless response to the challenges we face, warning that a lack of collaboration between entities in the industry will lead to the exploitation of our systems”.

On his part, Major General Staff Pilot Ali Mohammed Musleh Al Ahbabi, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020, said: “We are proud of the successful conference that was held and concluded today. This Conference will further promote the UAE as a leading global destination for hosting specialized conferences in the fields of unmanned systems, training and simulation systems and border security systems. We have witnessed a drastic increase in number of attendees and participants this year, which grew to reach over 600, reflecting an increase of over 100% from the previous edition”.

His Excellency Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and CEO of ADNEC Group, said: “The success of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 Conference is a solid demonstration of our success and conviction in our ability to organise and host the most prestigious international conferences, which plays a pivotal role in raising the standards of the business tourism sector in  Abu Dhabi.”

His Excellency Al Dhaheri, added: “Hosting such world-class experts and professionals at a conference of this scale, one day before the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions, confirms the great flexibility of the facilities of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Centre and its ability to host a wide range of events at the same time, using all the internal, external and marine facilities provided by the centre.”

The conference activities addressed issues such as organising training sessions, renewal of simulation systems and next generation of advanced technologies. The panel discussions highlighted aspects of cooperation between manned and unmanned systems in the age of intelligent systems, as well as border security in the digital world.

The Conference was concluded with closing remarks delivered by Dr. Yehya Mohamed Al Marzouqi, Executive Director Strategy – Tawazun Economic Council, UAE, and an honoring ceremony for all the speakers and participants for their important contributions to this event.

In his remarks, Dr Al Marzouqi said: “We have had the opportunity to hear from a variety of experts on interesting topics about a subject that is becoming increasingly relevant as this type of technology is becoming more integrated into our lives”.

He added: “Human capital is the cornerstone of all of the technology we have talked about today. The most important question is how we develop the youth of today, 35% of whom will be doing jobs that do not even exist yet? Tolerance is a building block of this nation and we have to channel that spirit into collaborating with the development of technology because technology, if not transferred into capability has no value.”

“Tomorrow, we will see the beginning of a fantastic exhibition in which all these technologies will be on display. I hope you enjoy your stay in Abu Dhabi and enjoy your experience over the next few days.”

It is worth noting that this Conference is organized by ADNEC in collaboration with Tawazun Economic Council, Ministry of Defense and the Supreme Command of the UAE Armed Forces, with ADASI as the strategic partner; International Golden Group (IGG) as the Diamond partner; Khalifa University as the knowledge partner, STRATA Manufacturing as the Gold partner, with the support of the Nation Shield Magazine; Etihad Holidays, General Authority of Ports, Borders and Free Zones Security, General Civil Aviation Authority and Abu Dhabi Health Services, Co. (SEHA) as the Official Healthcare partner.

The Largest Edition in History of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 will kick off next Sunday in Abu Dhabi

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) completed the final preparations for the 4th edition of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX 2020) and Simulation and Training Exhibition (SimTEX 2020) to be held between February 23 to 25.

Organised by ADNEC in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense and the Supreme Command of the UAE Armed Forces, the 4th edition of both exhibitions is the largest in their history, since their inception in 2015. Hosting several leading local, regional and international specialised organisations and global attendees, including government delegations, civil entities and other specialised agencies, the current edition will highlight the latest innovations and technologies in the fields of unmanned systems and simulation and training, as well as areas of artificial intelligence, robotics and the global future trends.

UMEX and SIMTEX 2020 are ideally positioned to highlight the functional and practical aspects of using unmanned systems in our lives today, which can be summarised in the combination of greater flexibility, lower capital, and lower operational costs.

The announcement came during a press conference held today (Tuesday) at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Centre, in presence of His Excellency Major General Staff Pilot Ali Mohammed Musleh Al Ahbabi, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying conference; His Excellency Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group CEO of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and its subsidiaries; Staff Brigadier Engineer Khalifa Ali Al Kaabi, Deputy Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying conference; Saeed bin Khadim Al Mansoori, Executive Director of IDEX LLC, a subsidiary of ADNEC; His Excellency Dr. Hassan Obaid AlMheiri, Assistant Under-Secretary for Accreditation and Education Services at the Ministry of Education; Ali Al Yafei, CEO, Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments Company (ADASI); and Dr. Fahad Al Maskari, Manager of Organizing Committee of the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC).

The world-renowned event, with a leading regional position as one of the key platforms for unmanned systems and simulation and training, is expected to attract a record turnout of both exhibitors and visitors. The events of both exhibitions will host a plethora of specialised activities and conferences in the presence of a select group of industry experts.

Alignment with the UAE Strategies for the Future

His Excellency Major General Staff Pilot Ali Mohammed Musleh Al Ahbabi, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying conference, said: “UMEX and SimTEX come in line with the UAE’s vision and Strategy for the Future, in accordance with the aspirations of our wise leadership, led by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE; His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister, Ruler of Dubai; His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, and their brothers Their Highnesses members of the Federal Supreme Council rulers of the Emirates.”

His Excellency added: “The two exhibitions promote efforts to advance concepts of innovation and support the goals of the ‘2020: Towards the next 50’ initiative by elevating future technologies, which affect economy, education, infrastructure, and healthcare industries across the UAE. UMEX and SimTEX also promote the UAE’s position as a global hub for technology and innovation, in line with the global trends towards embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

Al Ahbabi stressed that both exhibitions support robotic and artificial intelligence technologies in line with the UAE AI Strategy 2031, and emphasised that their contribution to launching innovative systems and products covering various civil and security sectors enhances the local economic diversification in conformity with the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and promotes the growth of the emirate’s non-oil GDP towards building a strong competitive innovation- and knowledge-based national economy.

Additionally, Al Ahbabi said: “UMEX and SimTEX, which shortly cemented their status as leading local, regional and global events, are the only specialised regional exhibitions for unmanned systems, simulation and training and the recently added border security systems.”

“The exhibitions aim to provide international visitors, including government delegations, civil entities and other specialised agencies and organisations, with an overview of the latest innovations and technologies. Across their various activities, the exhibitions will host 200 official delegations, a 33% increase in comparison to their 2018 edition. Moreover, a group of leading national companies will participate in the events, allowing them to showcase their latest innovations and products to decision makers and specialists, thus, enhancing their competitiveness and ability to access new markets around the world,” said Al Ahbabi.

Commenting on what’s new in this edition, Al Ahbabi said: “The current UMEX and SimTEX edition will be distinct by all means, especially that it will be held for the first time in parallel to the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC), organised by Khalifa University, and the series of artificial intelligence and robotic competitions, which will be run by the Ministry of Education. The special conference accompanying UMEX and SimTEX, to be held on February 22nd under the theme ‘Manned-Unmanned Teaming in the Age of Smart Systems’, is expected to see a remarkable turnout by participants, experts and specialist from all over the world.”

His Excellency Al Ahbabi thanked the organising committee and sub-committees of both exhibitions, and expressed his appreciation to all national entities, partners, sponsors and supporters of this event. He also thanked ADNEC for all the distinguished efforts they made over the last two years. Noting that all working groups closely collaborated for the success of these special events in a manner that befits the status and the reputation of the UAE.

The Largest Edition Ever

His Excellency Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer, ADNEC and its subsidiaries, said: “The 4th edition of UMEX and SimTEX saw a record-breaking increase in statistics compared to previous editions, making it the largest edition ever. Both exhibitions and events happening in conjunction with them will occupy all Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre halls, as well as the Grand Stand.”

His Excellency clarified that the great demand by specialised international companies to participate in the activities of the two exhibitions is a living testimony to the success of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company in supporting national events in various economic sectors, as part of its strategy to advance the reality and future of this vital sector, and to confirm the position of Abu Dhabi as the capital of business tourism in the region.

His Excellency Al Dhaheri said: “The number of exhibitors increased to 163 companies, with a 33% growth compared to the 2018 edition, and the total exhibition space increased by 40%, to 25,000 sqm, compared to the space of the previous edition. The number of participating countries increased to 30 in addition to 7 national pavilions. The number of national companies participating in the event reached 63, constituting 40% of the total number of exhibitors. UMEX and SimTEX 2020 are expected to attract more than 18,000 visitors from all over the world, with an increase of more than 50% from the previous edition.”

Al Dhaheri added: “The current edition of UMEX and SimTEX will address several new topics and activities, and it will be organised for the first time in conjunction with MBZIRC 2020, organised by Khalifa University, and the series of artificial intelligence and robotic competitions, which will be run by the Ministry of Education. On its first ever participation, the General Authority for the Security of Ports, Borders and Free Zones will participate with the third largest pavilion and hosting more than 25 exhibitors.”

Adding further, Al Dhaheri said: “The current edition of the exhibitions witnessed an increase in the number of international companies specialised in the civil use of unmanned systems and simulation and training, as well as the robotics and artificial intelligence applications. The special conference accompanying UMEX and SimTEX 2020 will be held on February 22nd at ADNEC, one day prior to the four main events.”

UMEX and SimTEX 2020 Conference

The exhibitions’ agenda is filled with accompanying events, where the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 Conference will be held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces in Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Centre, on February 22nd, one day before launching the main event.

In his speech during the conference, Staff Brigadier Engineer Khalifa Ali Al Kaabi, Deputy Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying conference, said: “The conference, held under the theme ‘Manned-Unmanned Teaming in the Age of Smart Systems’, will attract leading experts, academic researchers and global thought leaders to exchange views and explore the challenges and opportunities that emerged as a result of artificial intelligence and the fourth industrial revolution. The conference agenda consists of four keynote sessions and four panel discussions that host a group of 21 national and international speakers from 11 countries. 600 attendees are expected to participate, with a 100% increase from the previous edition. The conference agenda will cover four main themes, namely: Human Dimension, Missions and Operations, Industry and Market, and Border Security.”

“The Human Dimensions theme will address the human aspects of the unmanned systems and the mutual roles of manned and unmanned systems in the age of autonomy. For the second theme, the conference discusses Missions and Operations, examining the role of unmanned systems in supporting multi-domain operations, in addition to missions and operations in line with the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The third theme at UMEX and SimTEX 2020 special conference covers the future of the unmanned systems sector and the integration and interoperability of unmanned systems. Finally, border security has been added to this year’s conference as a fourth theme and as one of the main topics for debate and discussions. It is one of the new topics at the conference where experts and decision makers on the border security sector will discuss the implications of the digital age on joint action in ports and border security as well as its new intellectual approach in the light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” added Al Kaabi.

Commenting on the key topics to be discussed during the conference, Al Kaabi said: “The panel discussions will highlight aspects of cooperation between manned and unmanned systems in the age of intelligent systems, as well as border security in the digital world. The conference activities will address issues such as organising training sessions, renewal of simulation systems and next generation of advanced technologies.”

Al Kaabi stressed that the conference will promote the UAE as a leading global destination for hosting specialised conferences in the fields of unmanned systems, training and simulation systems and border security systems.

He also added: “The conference seeks to find innovative solutions to current challenges, and to anticipate the future in a world of rapid scientific developments and innovations and increased dependence on unmanned systems and artificial intelligence. It also aims to address the latest scientific and technological developments in these fields, and to share and exchange the ever-evolving best practices. Moreover, the conference will provide audience and speakers with an opportunity to explore and develop a better understanding of the daunting challenges facing mankind today. It will also bring focus on the advanced participation of the unmanned systems technologies and their role in achieving its full capacity during the upcoming decade.”

A Productive National Strategic Partnership

On the sidelines of the 14th edition of IDEX held in 2019, ADNEC signed a partnership agreement with Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments Company (ADASI), under which the latter participates in UMEX and SimTEX 2020 as a strategic partner. The agreement came in light of the directives of the wise leadership towards promoting cooperation among national entities to ensure the success of innovative initiatives across different economic sectors and open the door to domestic industries to access international markets and enhance their competitiveness.

During his speech in the conference, Ali Al Yafei, CEO, ADASI, said: “At ADASI, we are proud to be the Strategic Partner for UMEX & SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying Conference, organised by ADNEC. This is our first participation in the exhibitions since EDGE’s inauguration as an advanced technology group in November 2019, and our third year as a strategic partner for UMEX & SimTEX.”

“This partnership reflects the directives of our wise leadership on the necessity of intensifying the cooperation between national institutions and innovative initiatives across various economic sectors. Through our existing partnership with the General Command of the UAE Armed Forces, UMEX & SimTEX and ADNEC, we seek to emphasise our common goals in developing cutting-edge autonomous systems’ technologies that will advance the defence industry and eventually the commercial domain too, while at the same time building our local talent pool and contributing to the broader knowledge-based economy.” Al Yafei added.

Speaking about the effects of future technologies on the world, Al Yafei said: “Drone technology is revolutionising our world, with unmanned systems evolving to become a key enabler of more complex missions and with various extents of this technology being integrated into other areas – such as agriculture, oil and gas, humanitarian assistance and even emergency services. The market offers considerable growth for suppliers, and one of our key business priorities includes a dedicated focus on autonomous capabilities and exploring future growth trends with extensive investment in R&D.“

Al Yafei added: “We’re looking forward to engaging with local, regional and international industry leaders in the unmanned sector, showcasing some of our latest capabilities and continuing to drive transformative impact within this industry as we aim to enable a secure future. We also look forward to cooperating with global partners involved in developing products and technologies that serve our future visions.”

Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC) 2020

In parallel to the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions, the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC), organised by Khalifa University, will take place between February 23 to 25. MBZIRC was launched in 2015 as a major international robotics competition that will be held every two years, with total of prizes of USD 5 million.

MBZIRC 2020, attracting state-of-the-art AI solutions and autonomous aerial and ground robots, will consist of three challenges and a triathlon type Grand Challenge, all focusing on innovating robotic solutions for smart city applications.

The technological challenges addressed in the MBZIRC 2020 include: capturing and neutralizing intruder UAVs, extinguishing a series of simulated fires, and prompt response in emergencies in urban high-rise buildings. A total of 34 teams and nearly 500 researchers, representing the best robotic systems laboratories and accounting for 10% of 100 international universities, are preparing for these challenges.

For his part, Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Steering Committee General Co-Chair, Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC 2020) and Executive Vice President, Khalifa University, said, “The Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge 2020 aims at raising the ceiling of innovation in the field of robotics technology and artificial intelligence and challenge the brightest minds in this these fields, with the goal of reaching new horizons for future smart city technologies. The presence of more than 400 robotics experts from the best universities and research centres in the world in Abu Dhabi under the umbrella of the challenge is evidence of the important role that the challenge plays in putting the country on the global map of innovation in the field of robotics, and the vision of our wise leadership in strengthening the leading role of the UAE in this field.”

Dr. Arif added, “MBZIRC 2020 represents a golden opportunity for industry and business leaders to meet innovators and creators from the best minds, from all over the world, to explore the latest developments in robotics technology, and thus achieve the direct benefit for the UAE, the region and the world.”

The Series of Artificial Intelligence and Robotic Competitions

The Ministry of Education is gearing up for the launch of the 6th edition of the series of artificial intelligence and robotic competitions, which was initiated in 2015. More than 6,700 students across UAE schools will participate in this edition, which aims to develop a sustainable environmental platform that plays a major role in activating robot laboratories, promoting innovation, cooperation and international competition in the field of robotics and artificial intelligence and raising the level and scale of global participation in the field of advanced twenty-first-century skills.

UAE students from various levels and private and public schools are familiarising themselves with engineering books and technology sites to participate in the 6th edition of the series of artificial intelligence and robotic competitions. All participating students will diligently and brilliantly work to develop the coding language, fix robotic arms, install cameras, print 3D palm trees among others, with the aim of winning the competitions and finding the best solutions to contemporary problems and win the title.

The series will feature a pack of national and international competitions in the fields of programming, robotics and technological innovation, with winners getting the opportunity to represent the UAE in ten international competitions. The 2020 series competition will include four categories: The first will focus on international robotics competitions featuring 4 First National Competitions, 5 RoboCup Junior and 5 VEX Robotics competitions. This category is strategically designed to engage all students, from kindergarten to university levels, making the UAE the only country around the world to organise these three international competitions under one roof. The second category will include the GPC national programming contests, consisting of four different programming languages, namely: Python, C++, Web and Tynker. Moreover, the third category will present the STEM Robotics Innovation competition. The newly added fourth category will offer the International Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) Competition, consisting of three international contests, namely: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Car Competition, the Drones Competition and the ROV Submarines Competition.

In his speech, His Excellency Dr. Hassan Obaid AlMheiri, Assistant Under-Secretary for Accreditation and Education Services at the Ministry of Education, said: “Modern technologies such as robots and artificial intelligence are acquiring new areas in our lives, and increasing dependence on them, and in the near future these technologies will form the foundations for different life facilities. The Ministry of Education has long recognised the importance of these technologies, and their role in raising the quality and levels of education in the Emirati school, so we relied on these technologies in our educational practices and made them an integral part of our educational curricula aimed at achieving the targets of a percentage of the UAE in 2071, aimed at transforming the UAE into a global leader in all sectors.”

Dr. Hassan Obaid AlMheiri added: “the series of artificial intelligence and robotic competitions” hosted by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre is one of the most important annual competitions organised by the Ministry within an integrated system of initiatives that will familiarise our students with the latest modern developments in the field of engineering, technology and science, in a way that sharpens their imagination and enhances their creativity and innovation, which has a great impact in building their independent personalities that contributes to the development of the country at the world level, and we trust that the outputs of the series live up to our expectations and meet the aspirations of the future state.”

ADNEC is organising UMEX and SimTEX 2020 in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense and the Supreme Command of the UAE Armed Forces, with ADASI as the strategic partner; Abu Dhabi Digital Authority (ADDA) as the Gold partner; the Nation Shield Magazine as the Official Media partner; Etihad Holidays as the Official Destination Management partner and Abu Dhabi Health Services, Co. (SEHA) as the Official Healthcare partner.

Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company Signs a Media Partnership with Nation Shield Magazine for UMEX and SimTEX 2020

Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) has signed a media partnership agreement with Nation Shield magazine, in which the magazine will assume the role of the official media partner and the authority responsible for issuing the daily media newsletter for the Unmanned Systems Exhibition and Conference (UMEX) and Simulation and Training Exhibition and Conference (SimTEX) and the accompanying conference, which will be held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, from February 23 to 25 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.

 

The fourth edition of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 and the accompanying conference are organised by ADNEC in collaboration with the Armed Forces General Command.

 

Saeed Bin Khadim Al Mansoori, Executive Director IDEX, a subsidiary of ADNEC, said: “This agreement reflects ADNEC’s strategic endeavors to enhance collaboration and partnerships with various key national institutions. Through this cooperation, we also seek to combine efforts, promote business tourism, and organise and host major events that suit the regional and global reputation and position of Abu Dhabi.”

 

Al Mansoori also emphasised that this year will see the largest edition of UMEX and SimTEX in their history; and pointed that both exhibitions cemented their leading position among major international exhibitions and events in their respective fields.

 

“UMEX and SimTEX became increasingly relevant due to the opportunities they offer showcasing the latest unmanned systems and simulation and training systems, in addition to latest Artificial Intelligence and robotics technologies and real time applications, as well as all solutions offered by these technologies to face challenges and turn them  into opportunities for a better future,” Al Mansoori clarified.

 

For his part, Staff Colonel Yousef Juma Al Haddad, Editor in Chief, Nation Shield Magazine, said: “We are proud of our media partnership with ADNEC, and we will collaborate to build on the success of the previous editions of both exhibitions.”

 

Al Haddad added: “At Nation Shield, we are keen to offer exhibitors, participants and visitors at UMEX and SimTEX 2020 an exceptional media experience. We will provide exhibitors and participants with media and advertising spaces in our daily newsletters, and we will prepare and publish specialised media articles and conduct exclusive interviews with key national and international participants, experts and decision-makers to produce creative and rich content that benefits all readers of the magazine and newsletters.”

 

Al Haddad also added: “Since its inception in 1971, our magazine became a regional leader, keeping up with and covering UAE Armed Forces milestones, and all events and developments in the UAE throughout its longstanding history. We will continue to steadily move forward to always stay at the forefront.”

 

The fourth edition of UMEX and SimTEX will run between February 23 to 25, in conjunction with the “Mohamed bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge” and the Series of artificial intelligence and robotics competitions. The UMEX and SimTEX Conference will be held on February 22. For more details, please visit: https://umexabudhabi.ae/

The Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020 hold workshop for UAE diplomatic community on the upcoming exhibitions

The Higher Organising Committee of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition (UMEX) and Simulation and Training Exhibition (SimTEX), and the accompanying conference, which are held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, organised a workshop highlighting what to expect at this year’s edition, which shall be held from 23 – 25 February at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, to representatives of the UAE’s diplomatic community.

Staff Brigadier Engineer Khalifa Ali Al Kaabi, Deputy Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020, delivered the keynote address to gathered attendees, highlighting the importance of this year’s event for the development of the unmanned vehicles, simulation and training sectors in the UAE. The gathering was also addressed by Mr. Saeed Bin Khadim Al Mansoori, Executive Director IDEX, a subsidiary of ADNEC; Mr. Khaled Moussa, Director of Information Technology at the General Civil Aviation Authority and Conference Committee Member; Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Steering Committee General Co-Chair, Mohammed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC 2020) and Executive Vice President, Khalifa University of Science and Technology; and Eng. Khalfan Al Marashda, Student Skills Development Department Director at the Ministry of Education.

The meeting outlined the current areas of concern which the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions will focus on, which includes a new topic this year of border security, showcasing how artificial intelligence and unmanned systems can be used to maintain secure national boundaries. In addition, the meeting also discussed the upcoming UMEX and SimTEX conference, which is due to take place on February 22, and will bring together international industry leaders, experts and officials focused on the theme of ‘Manned-Unmanned Teaming in the Age of Smart Systems’.

H.E. Major General Staff Pilot Ali Mohammed Musleh Al Ahbabi, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of UMEX and SimTEX 2020, commented: “The UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions contribute to strengthening the position of the UAE as a global centre for technology and innovation, in line with global trends toward embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The two exhibitions are the only specialised regional exhibitions on unmanned systems and simulation and training, and for this year, border security systems.”

“The UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions have established a prestigious position at the local, the regional, and the international level, particularly given that they provide a specialised platform in the sectors of unmanned systems, simulation and training. For the fourth consecutive edition, the two exhibitions will display the latest innovations and technologies to a wide variety of representatives from global audiences, including government delegations, specialised experts and civil institutions,” he added.

His Excellency Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group CEO of ADNEC, commented: “UMEX and SimTEX showcase ADNEC’s success in organising and hosting internationally recognised exhibitions, alongside boosting the business tourism sector of Abu Dhabi.

“The organisation of the UMEX and SimTEX 2020 exhibitions, in conjunction with the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge and the artificial intelligence and robot competitions, demonstrates the great flexibility of the facilities of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. We are able to host a wide range of events concurrently, alongside providing indoor and outdoor platforms, with accessibility to waterfront areas.

“Both the UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions have come to compete, over a short period of time, with mega international events which are specialised in the unmanned systems sectors. The UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions for 2020 are anticipated to be the largest in their history, due to the unwavering support of our partners in the public and private sectors, most notably the Ministry of Defence, and the General Command of the Armed Forces.

“We have also received the support of a variety of national institutions, working in a range of sectors, who have collaborated to ensure these exhibitions are successful, and are organised appropriately according to Abu Dhabi’s regional and international reputation,” Al Dhaheri concluded.

Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi said: “The anticipated presence of around 500 top robotics experts from 30 teams representing 17 countries illustrates the global appeal of the 2020 edition of the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC). The categories in the competition are designed to test the creative capabilities and technological skills of these teams in tackling drone capture, construction automation, firefighting and emergency response. “

“These challenges also reflect the extreme limits set for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and unmanned guided vehicles (UGV), and the role of UAVs and UGVs in today’s technology-driven world. We believe the presence of the MBZIRC 2020 teams from world-renowned universities and robotics laboratories at UMEX and SimTEX 2020 will further inspire research innovations in this rapidly-evolving sector, bringing in highly advanced technologies to help industries develop even more capable UAVs and UGVs,” added Dr. Al Hammadi.

Her Excellency Dr. Amna Al Dahak Al Shamsi, Assistant Undersecretary of the Activities Sector at the Ministry of Education, commented: “AI, robotics and programming technologies have become very essential features of developed societies as we have seen their presence and applications in many aspects of our daily lives. We, at the Ministry of Education, are very keen to provide the students with the science and knowledge of the current time to inspire, motivate and hone their skills to become aspiring Emirati innovators. The sixth edition of the Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Competition Series will serve as part of the UAE’s Vision 2071 to become the world’s leading nation, creating a creative young generation, able to express their ideas with discipline and balance, use the skills of the current era, and apply them in real life situations. “

UMEX and SimTEX will run from 23 – 25 February, and the Mohammed bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge 2020 and the Artificial Intelligence and Robotics competitions will be held concurrently to the exhibitions. The UMEX and SimTEX Conference will be held on 22 February. Khalifa University will also organize the MBZIRC 2020 Symposium, soon after the Challenge, from 26 – 27 February. For more details, please visit: https://umexabudhabi.ae/

Ewan Duncan

A graduate of Edinburgh University (Jt Hons Mathematics and Statistics), Ewan Commissioned into the Royal Marines where he served for 10 years before transferring to the Army Intelligence Corps in order to further his career in Intelligence and Security.

Ewan served for 30 years in total and served extensively on both Counter Terrorist and conventional operational deployments/commitments around the world. He retired as a Brigadier and Head of Army Intelligence.

Subsequently, Ewan established and operated a global Corporate Security & Intelligence function for British American Tobacco. He has worked as an independent security consultant. For the past three years, he has fulfilled the role of Group Head of Security for Associated British Ports (the UK’s largest Port Operator) with responsibility for addressing a range of security threats to Cruise Ships, Cargo movement as well as Port Security (ISPS and UK Regulations).

He presently a Defense Adviser and Middle East Specialist Operations Manager with The Global Management Consultancy firm, Kearney.

Khalid Al Breiki

Khalid Al Breiki is the President of the Mission Support cluster, EDGE.
Prior to this role, he was CEO of GAL, where he was leading the strategic realignment of the company and managing business growth for one of the leading MRO service providers in the UAE.

Earlier, Al Breiki was the Managing Director of the Commercial Division of YAS Holding, where he managed more than 12 different commercial assets, and CEO of GAL Air Navigation Services (GAL ANS), a UAE-company specialising in Air Navigation Services based in Abu Dhabi.

Previously, Al Breiki served in a senior position in the technology acquisition and deployment field, joining an already-established core team of UAE professionals. He was also General Manager at Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC), facilitating the construction of the new airport and increasing the number of qualified UAE nationals in the aviation field. Earlier, he worked as Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Thales Advanced Solutions, where he led the company’s strategic projects, after serving in the UAE Armed Forces.

Al Breiki possesses extensive experience in the aviation sector, having held numerous positions within the aircraft and electronics maintenance domain. He was the Lead Engineer for the F-16 programme within the UAE Avionics Integration Team, and Systems Integration Specialist in the Flight Test and Development Centre for the UAE Air Force and Air Defence.

Khalid Al Breiki holds an MSc in Systems Engineering from Southern Methodist University (SMU) and a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from The George Washington University (GW), both in the US. He has attended many senior leadership and management programmes from renowned institutions.

Bashar Kilani

In his role Bashar oversees the IBM business in the Gulf Countries and the Levant working with clients and partners across industries. Prior to that he was the Business Unit Executive for IBM software business in MENA. Bashar began his career with IBM in the United Kingdom and held several managerial and executive positions in software development, services, sales & marketing. His international career includes several assignments in the USA, Europe and the Middle East.

Kilani has a passion for thought leadership around Digital Transformation, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Cloud and has spoken at many international and regional conferences. He holds an MBA in Management from the University of Reading, an M.Sc. in Computer Engineering from the University of Surrey both in the United Kingdom and B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Jordan.

Lieutenant General Tim Keating

When Lieutenant General Tim Keating took up the position of Chief of Defence Force in January 2014, having been Vice Chief of the Defence since late 2012, his focus was firmly on the Defence Force’s raison d’etre: the delivery of frontline military capabilities to ensure Government is provided the response options it requires to safeguard national security.
He began implementing a significant reform agenda aimed at lifting the organisational performance of the Defence Force and improving its contribution to the wider security sector. Fixing on a single plan for the NZDF and a new excellence horizon built around the year 2020 with the goal of ‘enhancing combat capability’, Lieutenant General Keating initiated work-streams to deliver stronger leadership, better governance, and improved management; greater partnering with other agencies and other militaries; and ensuring the Defence Force has the people and talent it needs, while also better supporting military families.

By demonstrating to Government that the Defence Force had a thorough handle on its processes, with improved understanding of the true through-life costs of all inputs, the NZDF under Lieutenant General Keating’s stewardship improved the levels of confidence in it within Government and the wider security sector. Government confirmed its faith in Defence’s ability to deliver by signalling a 15-year $20 billion asset replacement programme – new ships, aircraft, investment in estate, and new capabilities like cyber – delivering modern, combat-focussed capabilities, with the right people to operate them.

Lieutenant General Keating’s personal leadership philosophy is focused on the leader as a servant – a framework that he has developed over his career since first enlisting into the New Zealand Army in January 1982 as an Officer Cadet, and further honed through practical experiences. These include operational deployments as Commanding Officer of the New Zealand Contingent Multinational Force, Sinai; and to Afghanistan, where he was a Task Group Commander. Lieutenant General Keating has also been Commanding Officer 1st New Zealand Special Air Service, as well as serving as Commandant of the Army’s Officer Cadet School.

Lieutenant General Keating retired from the Defence Force in 2018 and became the Chief Executive of New Zealand Health Partnerships Ltd. He joined Kearney in December 2019 as a Senior Advisor in the Dubai based consultancy practice.

H.E. Mohammed Bin Ahmad Al Bawardi

His Excellency Mohammed Al Bawardi is the Minister of State for Defence as per the new Cabinet reshuffle in February 2016. In addition to his role, he is the Vice Chairman of Mubadala Development Company and Dolphin Energy Limited, and board member of Tawazun Holding. He is also Chairman of the Committee for Developing and Implementing the Water and Agriculture Strategy for Abu Dhabi. Furthermore, H.E. Al Bowardi is Managing Director and board member of the Environment Agency- Abu Dhabi, Deputy Chairman of the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund and the International Fund for Houbara Conservation- Abu Dhabi, and a member of the Board of Trustees of Abu Dhabi University (ADU). H.E. Al Bowardi has previously held the positions of Undersecretary of the Ministry of Defence, Secretary-General of the General Secretariat of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of the Executive Committee. He has a degree in History and Political Science from Lewis & Clark College, USA.