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Gulf Weekly (Bahrain), 15.11.2003

Sky’s the limit as Dubai Airshow takes off ...

WHEN it comes to human ingenuity, sky’s the limit!

And the much-awaited Dubai Airshow 2003, which takes off on December 7, is about to prove that right.

And as our Middle East bureau chief Shafquat Ali so aptly puts it in his roundup of Dubai’s hectic calendar (see pages 10 to 13), there’s much to look up to at the region’s prestigious event.

To be held at the Airport Expo Centre until December 11, the biennial event is likely to be bigger and better this year and promises to bring all the glamour that was missing at the Paris Airshow.

Russian inventor Hamid Khalidov will highlight a new life-saving aerospace technology, the Aircraft Passenger Autonomous Rescue Capsule at the expo.

If an aircraft is doomed to disaster, explosives embedded in the fuselage will detonate, separating the rest of the body from the highly durable and heat resistant capsule in which the passengers sit.

A parachute braking system then deploys and the capsule floats gently to the ground - or sea, where it will float.

Khalidov will be at airshow as a guest of Georgia's Tbilisi Aircraft Manufacturing (TAM).

“There’s no doubt Khalidov has brilliant ideas,” says TAM’s representative in the UAE Eugeniya Chebotareva.

“What he will be looking for at the Dubai Airshow is investment to pay for the development costs to turn the idea into reality.

“And with passenger safety paramount, we think his ideas have lots of potential,” she adds.

More than 60 of Khalidov’s patent applications were approved between 1999 and 2001 alone. His other bright ideas include a hyperfunctional keyboard, which gives a whole new look to the traditional interface.

Among other attractions at the event will be the debut of the Maverick, a unique ‘build-it-yourself’ twinjet.

The twinjet is a small business airliner already successful in the US. TAM has been awarded the sole foreign licence to build the five-seater jet or supply it in kit form.

The first test jet built by TAM in the Georgian capital will be in Dubai to try and impress potential buyers across the Middle East.

“This year the airshow has a wealth of new-to-market exhibitors and technology and the business oppor-tunities on offer are therefore substantially in-creased,” said the expo’s chief executive Clive Richardson.


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