|For a place dedicated to trade and commerce, it is perhaps not surprising that Dubai in the United Arab Emirates is home to one of the world’s leading aviation trade shows. Every two years, leading aviation manufacturers and service providers flock to the emirate to present themselves and their gear.
While 2017 saw the Chinese and Russian air forces sent impressive delegations to Dubai, 2019 was once again more western oriented. That meant that the offering was perhaps a little less exotic to western visitors, but there was still plenty to see and discover from all over the world. The Brazilian manufacturer Embraer showed off some of its latest hardware, including the E195 ‘Profithunter’ airliner, the Super Tucano and the C-390 transport and tanker aircraft, receiving its name ‘Millennium’ at the Dubai airshow. The United Stated Department of Defence also had a strong showing with lots of new kit, including the KC-46 tanker, while the Russians presented the Mi-38, Kazan Ansat and Yak-130. Perhaps the biggest pull though is the strong showing of UAE’s military and security services in the static park, including their new Casa 295 and Global 6000AEW. Emirates also showed off some of its large aircraft, painted to act as promotional billboards for the Dubai World Expo 2020, joining the Dubai Emirates Flight Academy on the huge apron of Al-Makhtoum airport, Dubai's second large civilian airport.
The show runs from Sunday to Thursday. Only Sunday and Monday enjoyed nice weather however, with sandstorms on Tuesday and clouds and rain on Wednesday and Thursday threw a spanner in the works, even if the display was mostly able to go ahead.
Watch the complete report above (51 minutes)
In the air, the show boasted a superb line-up of 3 national display teams, the Blades display team from the UK, the F-22 Raptor solo display of the USAF, and of course solo displays by the Mirage 2000 and F-16E of the UAE air force. Perhaps the biggest new addition to the programme this year was the opening flypast of the show to present assets of the UAE air force not usually seen at events like these, which included a C-17 and Airbus A330MRTT, joining 3 helicopter types, each with a three-ship: the AH-64, the UH-60 and CH-47. Let’s hope this extensive opening parade becomes a tradition at the show!
While perhaps not a classic, the Dubai 2019 airshow was very enjoyable and had a solid edition once more. With more than 54 billion Dollars in trade and 87 people in attendance over the show’s 5 day-run, it did not disappoint those who were there.
|Report by Chris Janssens
Lay-out and content by Chris Janssens, 2005 - present