“The most comprehensive display of military technology”
Looking back at the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) in 2017, this most comprehensive display of military technology is regarded as perhaps the best organised such event globally, Vayu editors were at the ExCeL site in the London Dockyards area with focus on some major products and programmes presented there.
Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI), regarded as the most comprehensive display of military technology, has been termed by UK’s Secretary of State for Defence, Rt Hon Sir Michael Fallon as “a remarkably stable landmark in an otherwise turbulent world”. The most recent edition, held 12-15 September 2017 at ExCeL London, did not disappoint.
Vayu’s editorial team were at the buzzing exhibition halls which welcomed 35,008 visitors, a 3% rise since 2015, with 1,600 companies, while the dockside venue hosted a spectacular line up of seven visiting international warships. Not to be outdone by the naval sector, an impressive array of aircraft stationed at ExCeL’s East Terrace included a Chinook and a Black Hawk. The land dimension was in full force, with armoured vehicles such as Rheinmetall’s ‘British by Birth’ 8x8 multi-role Boxer and its Leopard main battle tank among those drawing much attention.
DSEI also attracted an exceptional level of UK Government support, involving the Department for International Trade; Cabinet Office; Home Office; and the Ministry of Defence. The line-up of ministerial guests included the Rt Hon Sir Michael Fallon, Secretary of State for Defence, who attended for three days in a row, giving two keynote speeches; Rt Hon Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State for International Trade; Harriett Baldwin, Minister for Defence Procurement; and Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP, Minister of State for Security. Rt Hon Tobias Ellwood MP, Minister for Defence People and Veterans, attended the inaugural People and Skills Day at DSEI to highlight how the UK MOD was tackling the challenge of recruiting and retaining personnel from “welders to cyber warriors”, while “adjusting to society’s changing expectations and the exponential advance of technology”.
This was achieved by a three-pronged strategy including the creation of “new qualifications in export and International trade, a common industry
and government career pathway and secondments to allow individuals to develop their skills and gain key experience across both industry and government”.
A key enabler for strategic cooperation across the international defence and security sector, DSEI welcomed visitors from 110 countries. In addition, military representatives from across Europe, Australia and Canada joined all four UK Service Chiefs to address the DSEI seminar audience.
Among the wide range of product launches on the exhibition floor, Saab used DSEI to unveil its Gripen Aggressor fighter which would act as an opposing force in advanced military combat training.
Swarm Systems’ stand featured its Owl 4 ‘ Nano UAV’ which can be carried in soldiers’ pockets and deployed to help them see around corners or over hills without exposing themselves to gunfire.
Dutch firm Delft Dynamics showcased its ‘DroneCatcher’ counter UAS system for the first time, one of the only technologies of its type which can actually eliminate rogue drones by catching the threat in mid-air.
The growing expertise in military healthcare was also in evidence at this edition of DSEI, primarily in the Medical Demonstration Area organised by the MOD’s Defence Medical Services (DMS). This trend was also reflected elsewhere on the exhibition floor by companies such as B3 Blackbox Biometrics; Bodytrak; and Equivital which manufacture revolutionary sensors for monitoring soldiers’ cardiovascular and thermoregulatory responses during intense activity or training, and even brain activity following blast exposure.
Rear Admiral Simon Williams, Chairman of DSEI organisers Clarion Defence & Security, stated, “The support we are receiving from the UK Government is solid evidence of their commitment to the nation’s defence and security sectors. It is very pleasing that our industry’s performance and potential in key areas such as innovation, technology development and exports are being recognised in this way. DSEI will continue to deliver the ideal platform to see this partnership in action.”
The new Gripen Aggressor
NAMMO was a key sponsor of the event
India was well represented with private companies like Zen Technologies and MKU, apart from a number Indian Government PSUs
Defence companies from Pakistan were present in full strength
Rafael from Israel had a wide portfolio of systems on display, including its Spike LR2