Abu Dhabi, 23 January 2024: Under the distinguished patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Ruler of Abu Dhabi, and inaugurated by His Highness Lieutenant General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy
Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, the highly anticipated UMEX and SimTEX exhibitions made a significant impact in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
Organised by ADNEC Group and the Ministry of Defence, with EDGE Group as a strategic partner, the first day of the three-day exhibition was characterised by innovation, technology, and the establishment of key partnerships, setting new standards in the unmanned systems and simulation sectors. On the first day of the exhibition, the Tawazun Council secured deals totalling AED 971 million.
This is the largest edition of UMEX and SimTEX since its inception, with the total area of the exhibition increasing to 30,000 square metres compared to the 2022 edition, which had 26,200 square metres. The United Arab Emirates had the largest pavilion at this year's edition, spanning over 5,200 square metres, followed by China and the United States.
This edition of UMEX and SimTEX featured the launch of five new initiatives, including the MoD Coding Challenge Competition, UMEX Commercial Live Demonstrations held for the first time at ADNEC Grandstand and Marina Channel, UMEX Next_Gen, and UMEX Talks.
MoD Coding Challenge
The day commenced with the MoD Coding Challenge Competition, spotlighting the expertise of talented programming minds. This feature, organised by the Ministry of Defence in collaboration with ADNEC Group, allowed Emiratis to participate in two coding tracks. The event aimed to nurture national competencies in specialised programming sectors. These Coding Challenges provided an opportunity for participants to showcase their skills in software development, hardware design, and drone operations planning, to stay updated with the latest industry technologies, all conducted in a fun and competitive manner.
Following this, the Official Opening Ceremony set the tone for the day with an impressive blend of tradition and technological advancement.
The introduction of UMEX Commercial at Onsite Stage Hall 6 marked a significant milestone, providing a platform for both civilian and military advancements. The event showcased a strong presence of national and international companies presenting their latest commercial products, emphasising the immense potential of the global commercial unmanned sector. It underscored how businesses across various industries are adopting UAV solutions to enhance efficiency, reduce costs, and improve safety. The new Commercial Zone underscored the event's role as a central hub for cutting-edge developments in unmanned systems, offering a dynamic and interactive experience for all attendees.
Furthermore, the inaugural UMEX NEXT_GEN Pitch Competition connected startups with industry leaders and potential investors. More than 20 innovative startups from 7 countries participated, introducing their cutting-edge solutions to the market, some for the first time. International startups such as Volarious, AIR6 Systems GmbH, Strada AI, UAV Tech Private Limited, AR Engineering, and many others showcased their innovations while using the opportunity to build relationships with investors and end-users.
Over the next three days these startups will be competing in the UMEX NEXT_GEN Pitch Competition, vying for the title of UMEX NEXT_GEN 2024 champion startup.
Live Demonstrations at ADNEC
A captivating new feature at this edition included live demonstrations of unmanned systems and vehicles from leading national and international companies, including EDGE Group, Al Marakeb Technologies, AM Industries L.L.C, Robotized by TII, YUGOIMPORT-SDPR, and Milrem Robotics. The live demonstrations included real scenarios and potential applications for unmanned vehicles, with large crowds of delegates and industry leaders gathered at the ADNEC Grandstand before moving to the ADNEC Water Channel for marine demonstrations. These live displays showcased the remarkable potential of unmanned maritime systems, set to shape the future in both the defence and civil sectors.
UMEX Talks, which provided a platform for industry specialists to network and engage in discussions on unmanned systems, AI, and robotics, featured thought-provoking conversations among veteran and new industry stakeholders. The UMEX Talks covered groundbreaking topics such as the future of autonomy and the potential for AI and robotics, addressing major advances in the sectors. Dr. Zhengxiong Yang, Mobility Solution Architecture Lead at Bayanat, delivered an insightful presentation titled ‘Future of Autonomy in Motion: TXAI.’ Bayanat was the first company to introduce autonomous ride-hailing services to the region, receiving positive feedback from customers and widespread media attention. The pilot operation also allowed Bayanat to accumulate first-hand experience and knowledge for future operations.
The Ministry of Defences Musical band had a grand performance to conclude day one of UMEX and SimTEX 2024 that set a new benchmark in the fields of unmanned systems and simulation. This event not only showcased technological innovations and substantial economic deals but also reinforced Abu Dhabi's status as a global hub for technological advancements in these sectors. The combination of national and international talents, the introduction of groundbreaking initiatives, and the establishment of strategic partnerships underscore the event's significant role in shaping the future of unmanned and simulation technologies. With a successful start and an enthusiastic response from participants and attendees alike, UMEX and SimTEX 2024 is poised to continue driving innovation and collaboration in the days to come.