DSEi 2009 preview

Over 1350 exhibitors from across the globe will be showcasing the latest innovations at this year's Defence Systems & Equipment International (DSEi) running from September 8 to 11

With technology spanning land, air, sea and security applications, the event is one of the world's largest defence and security exhibitions. Because DSEi is held at ExCeL in London's Docklands, the venue's location allows visiting warships to berth beside the exhibition halls as well as enable various naval suppliers to conduct demonstrations in the Royal Victoria Docks. The organisers anticipate similar numbers of visitors to the last time the event was held in 2007 – around 26,500 – however, this year's event has grown by 10%. Working with UKTi DSO, DSEi's organisers have invited foreign delegations and high ranking senior visitors from around the world. The last DSEi saw 77 official delegations attending from 50 countries. Seminars The last DSEi saw the introduction of the Innovation Showcase – an opportunity for small to medium sized defence companies and supply chain contractors to present new products, services and technologies. These free sessions have been reprised for this year, as well as the addition of a seminar programme aimed at a wide range of topical issues such as exporting to the USA, how to sell to UK MoD and how SMEs can effectively introduce their new products into a defence supply chain. Other sessions include two seminars from Jane's Information Group, the first looking at global mergers and acquisitions activity and the second analysing the future of the European defence industry. Since 2007, the economic landscape has altered dramatically and this will be addressed in Stephen Radley's seminar. Radley, chief economist at the Engineering Employers Federation (EEF) will be discussing the current economic crisis and assess its implications for the defence industry and for manufacturing as a whole - both in 2009 and beyond. He will evaluate the prospects for rebalancing the UK economy in favour of manufacturing and outline what manufacturers and government must do to achieve this. A session looking at the export potential for defence and security products will be held the London Chamber of Commerce & Industry's Defence & Security Group featuring speakers from UKTI DSO, and the legal and financial world. Once again, all the seminar sessions are free to attend for exhibitors. The British Army Demo area, located in the North Hall, will reflect the mix of threats that today's armed forces need to be trained and equipped to deal with. Soldiers from the British Army Export Services team will carry out the demonstrations featuring some of the British designed equipment now used in operations. Some of the companies exhibiting at DSEi 2009 3di Consulting Stand 112 Independent product design consultancy, 3di Consulting, will be exhibiting its services for the first time at DSEi. Established in 2001, the company has recently designed equipment for the defence services including providing the technical design and development of an aviation battery box, which included a complete redesign of the assembly and an appreciation of the curved form of the helmet. These details needed to accommodate a PCB assembly and other essential elements. The original SL prototypes progressed to vac castings live for product testing, together with full colour CAD renders used for the client's presentations. 3di can assist from the initial product brief, concept designs are produced and progressed to detailed design. Prototypes are then produced to prove and test the design. Final detailing and drafting then complete the CAD files which make them ready to be used directly for production. Paragon Rapid Technologies Stand 242 Rapid Prototyping specialist, Paragon Rapid Technologies, will be showcasing examples of prototypes for the defence sector. Some examples include 2-shot moulded hand held devices, high temperature, fully functional and atypically large vacuum castings (up to 1.7m length). There will also be various stereolithography, CNC and SLS models, rubber and silicone components, RIM castings/low volume products, lenses and beacons. Centricity Stand 428 Centricity specialises in software for design, simulation, analysis and manufacture of electrical, hydraulic and pneumatic systems. Its products are used by commercial, defence, R&D and educational establishments. Industries include specialist military and emergency vehicles, construction machines, marine, aerospace and the tier one supply chain servicing these markets. The company describes its products as intuitive and easy to use and says that its animated graphics and simulation tools enable engineers to build reliable virtual models of electrical and fluid systems. Brownell Ltd Stand 235 Brownell designs, manufactures and develop desiccators, desiccant bags, humidity indicators and pressure relief valves. Their main purpose is to protect against moisture and atmospheric related problems which can occur in electronics, optics and storage containers. Brownell is launching two new products to the UK market at DESi, the 'Pumped NEPS1000 Advantage', which is the next generation in dry gas purging equipment, and also an 'Electronic Relative Humidity Indicator'. Advanced Composites Group Stand 328 Advanced Composites Group will be exhibiting its prepreg products which are used in a variety of defence applications. These range from ballistic protection to structural components for aerospace applications, including UAVs, naval applications, radomes and communication dishes. ACG will exhibit a spall liner manufactured at Permali Gloucester Limited using a hot press moulding technique with ACG's MTM 82 phenolic resin/S2-Glass prepreg. The moulded shape of the liner is said to provide coverage by matching the contours of the vehicle interior, increasing the protected area while reducing overall component weight. The materials and process are now used in full scale production, and parts have been supplied for fitment to an in-service fleet of vehicles.