GLOBAL DEFENSE MARKET
DUBAI AIRSHOW NEWS: Israel, UAE to Collaborate on Sea Drones, Sensors
Meredith Roaten photo
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Israel Aerospace Industries will team with one of the United Arab Emirates' largest defense contractors to build new unmanned naval systems, the companies announced at the Dubai Airshow.
The partnership between the Israeli firm and the EDGE Group — announced Nov. 18 — will lead to the development of a new class of sea drones and a new maintenance center for electro-optics technologies in the United Arab Emirates.
The UAE and Israel reached a peace agreement in 2020, which made it possible for Israeli companies to attend the airshow for the first time. More than five companies exhibited at the Israel pavilion during the international confab.
Aviv Kanelbaum, manager for business development and marketing for IAI's MBT Space Division, told National Defense the company’s presence at the show is intended to make a statement.
“We decided to go to big and stay big,” he said in a Nov. 17 interview. “We see our future here.”
The UAE’s expertise as a “startup hub” will benefit IAI’s ability to develop new technology, he added.
“We learned about the UAE capabilities and the UAE companies that are here and the people that are here,” he said. “They are super intelligent, super creative, and we believe [we] will be able to make great things.”
The industrial partners will design a series of 170 modular unmanned surface vessels. ADSB, a component of the EDGE Group, will focus on the platform design, control system integration and payload, while IAI’s engineers design the autonomous control system and integration of mission payloads, according to a press release.
The autonomous platforms will be able to perform missions such as anti-submarine warfare and deploying vertical take-off and landing assets.
“Comprising advanced sensors, sonars and imaging systems that are integrated into a unified command and control system, the USV can operate either remotely, semi-autonomously or autonomously, requiring no human intervention,” according to a press release.
Meanwhile, a memorandum of understanding between the two companies outlines a maintenance center for surveillances systems that use electro-optic sensor technology such as the plug-in optronic payload and multi-sensors optronic stabilized payload.
The two countries are laying the groundwork for future collaboration with a new standing committee that will work on identifying “opportunities in the field" including in other nations.
The IAI delegation planned to visit the new office based in the UAE the night before the collaboration was announced, Kanelbaum noted.
Topics: Global Defense Market