Land, Sea and Air Defence

Defence professionals from across the world will gather at IDEX 2015 to view the latest security technology for land, sea and air

IDEX is the only international defence exhibition and conference in the MENA region demonstrating the latest technology across land, sea and air sectors of defence. It is a unique platform to establish and strengthen relationships with government departments, businesses and armed forces throughout the region. IDEX is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces and is organised by the IDEX LLC in association and with the full support of the UAE Armed Forces.

IDEX takes place biennially at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), which is centrally located in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. The next event takes place on 22-26 February 2015.

All the major local and international defence manufacturers and contractors will fill over 35,000sqm of exhibition space running through the 12 exhibition halls, the concourse and the atrium.

The outside Capital Plaza also features exhibition stands and outside displays.

The Maritime Security Area called NAVDEX is located on the dock edge and features local and international exhibitors who specialise in naval, maritime and coastal security technology, equipment and crafts. There will also be on-water exhibits, daily demonstrations and visiting navy vessels.

For the first time there will also be an unmanned systems exhibition called UMEX 2015.

Defence Conferences
The IDEX Defence Conferences will give delegates the opportunity to discuss the biggest challenges the industry is facing and indentify the potential solutions.

The opening session will talk about using modern technologies to meet with rising international challenges and changing geopolitical balances.

In this keynote presentation the speaker will discuss what defence technology for the future means in practice. There is no doubt that technology will change how the armed services operate both during peace time and on the battlefield, but it also changes the nature of the threats that nations face.

There will be a panel discussion on modern military interoperability and how to meet the challenges of operating in a global and interconnected world.

Joint War Fighting is frequently associated with using common systems but there is more to it than that. With multinational, cross service operations now more usual than standalone operations, it cannot stop here. In this session heads of services from land, naval and air from three different nations will discuss how operations, training and force technologies need to enhance for effective war fighting. Each speaker will be interviewed by the moderator for ten minutes before joint questions and discussion.

Military Cooperation
There will be a panel discussion on military industry cooperation. Traditionally the military has prepared itself to meet a threat that is similar to itself – another army, navy and air force. However with the growing threat of non-state actors, the importance of national IT infrastructure and the very different threat that this faces from cyber-attack, the modern military needs to be more nimble.

Additionally many technologies for the military of the future, from additive manufacturing, through to nanotechnology and intelligent systems, are already seeing significant investment by private sector companies including those outside of the defence sphere. In this panel a defence manufacturer, a senior officer and a private sector company will discuss how the military can spot the next important new technologies, invest in them and work with the private sector to make this cost effective.

There will be another panel discussion on recruiting and training the modern armed forces. A more high tech military with increased use of unmanned systems won’t necessarily lead to a reduction in military personnel, but it will need to a change in skillset for tomorrow’s military. How can the military prepare for this? How can existing troops and officers be taught new skills? What must governments do to assist the military in this transformation? This panel will bring together officers and government officials to discuss workforce issues for the modern military.

Naval Power
The Naval Defence Conference will feature a keynote session on naval power and the global economy. In an increasingly interdependent world, our oldest long range trade routes via the sea are, if anything, more important than ever. In this opening keynote the presenter will look at how the modern navy is using new technologies to provide security for international trade.

There will be a panel discussion on combining naval forces for joint operations and for fighting a unified war. With an increasing need for joint operations, including the wish for the GCC to establish a joint naval force, this session will look at the human and technological issues that need to be considered for establishing joint operations, not least communication considerations. The challenging areas for the services are well known – harmonising command and control, communications and computers being the most prominent among them. This session will look at the full range of considerations for establishing joint operations.

There will be another panel session on unmanned systems for naval operations. Modern navies are adapting to use a variety of autonomous systems, airborne, on the surface and undersea. Use of this technology has the possibility to dramatically increase the effectiveness of naval vessels and the Navy as a whole. The session will as the question, what sort of missions can be used for these technologies and what should the navy be doing to prepare for the future?

The next panel discussion will be on the trends and developments of maritime situational awareness. The modern threat to naval warships and commerce is more likely to come from low tech small craft than from warships or submarines. This means tools that help maritime surveillance analysts identify suspicious activity are extremely valuable. Modern technology allows for a more expansive and effective maritime domain awareness. With unmanned, broad area surveillance systems, naval forces can deliver more information than ever and quicker than before. This panel will explore the issues.

The last panel session will be on expeditionary and irregular warfare and preparing marine units for future missions. The role of the marine forces is changing. In this panel senior marine commanders will discuss how they are adapting their forces to deal with future threats.

Unmanned Systems Conference
This conference will kick off with a keynote session on the evolving role of unmanned systems in modern defence forces. Unmanned Systems are not a new defence technology but their full potential has yet to be fulfilled. In this keynote session the speaker will explore new uses for unmanned systems and what industry and the military need to do to make this happen.

There will be a panel discussion on understanding trends in unmanned technologies and how it impacts future warfare. The panel will bring together industry executives of unmanned systems to discuss how they are developing new applications for unmanned systems and to present date and results from their recent use.

The Potential for UAS in the GCC will then be discussed. The UAE as a nation is investing in unmanned systems both from a military and a commercial perspective. This pattern will explore how the nation is developing the technology and partnership opportunities that are available.

The next topic to be discussed will be civil cooperation in developing UASs for the defence community. Much of the recent development for unmanned systems is no longer carried out by the traditional defence and aerospace industry. What can defence companies and the military learn from their successes and how do all parties cooperate to ensure national security.

There will then be a panel discussion on training standards, certification and other relevant human factors. Human factors are critical to accelerate the adoption of unmanned technologies. Unmanned systems require a different set of skills to operate than conventional aircraft. And until operators are certified like pilots and the technology is proven unmanned systems will be highly restricted in civilian airspace limiting their role. This panel will look at the challenges. The final session will be on the potential role for unmanned systems as fighter aircraft. It has been speculated that the sixth generation of fighters will be unmanned or at the least a mix of manned and unmanned aircraft. The session will examine if this is realistic.

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