Dubai Future Labs signs three agreements to drive innovation in aviation, logistics
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Dubai Future Labs signs three agreements to drive innovation in aviation, logistics

Dubai Future Labs signs three agreements to drive innovation in aviation, logistics

The agreements seek to drive adoption of advanced robotics and automation technologies in key economic sectors

Dubai Future Labs signs three agreements

Dubai Future Labs (DFL), an initiative of Dubai Future Foundation (DFF), signed partnership agreements with three Dubai-based entities Emirates Airline, DP World, and dnata.

The trio of agreements aim to deploy advanced future technologies across aviation and logistics, which form two vital non-oil sectors for Dubai and the UAE.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Dubai Future Foundation, witnessed the signing of the partnerships.

The partnerships aim to activate the Dubai Robotics and Automation Programme launched this September to boost the development and adoption of robotics and automation (R&A) and accelerate its deployment in key economic sectors.

Read: Sheikh Hamdan launches robotics and automation programme for Dubai

“These three partnerships will contribute to strengthening Dubai and the UAE’s position as a living laboratory for advanced technologies and innovations,” said Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, who was present at the signing.

“Deploying robotics, automation and future technologies in key sectors enhances economic diversification and raises Dubai’s long-term competitiveness and attractiveness as a platform for launching and growing businesses and enabling international trade with cutting-edge logistical services.”

The main project to be undertaken as part of the MoU signed between Dubai Future Labs’ and DP World is aimed at developing smart, autonomous electric vehicles for terminal operations that can serve as a more sustainable and reliable alternative.

The MoU also focuses on promoting R&D in built-for-purpose systems and commercialising it to increase the safety and efficiency of DP World’s global operations, as well as supporting the group’s carbon reduction and sustainability objectives, Dubai Media Office reported.

Under the MoU, Dubai Future Labs, will facilitate the research, testing and implementation of new technologies for logistics operations, and develop future technologies that incorporate artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, data analysis and blockchain.

“This MoU is of strategic importance to us and comes at a time when it is critical to enhance supply chain efficiencies,” said Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, group chairman and CEO of DP World.

“DP World and Dubai Future Foundation will explore the potential for achieving breakthroughs in various fields by integrating with smart government system and spurring development and innovation to transform the UAE into an advanced digital and smart economy.

“With our next-generation technologies and solutions including hyperloop and automated warehouse stacking as well as initiatives like Dubai Trade, Cargoes, Searates and Digital Freight Alliance, we are indeed reshaping the future of trade and logistics. Keeping pace with the rapid evolution of technology, we are also exploring the deployment of metaverse solutions across our operations to solve real-world supply chain bottlenecks.”

Under the MoU with Emirates Airline, Dubai Future Labs will facilitate various innovative pilot projects including a robot check-in agent that leverages facial recognition and interacts with passengers as well as a robot waiter serving in airport lounges.

Emirates is also increasing efforts to overhaul its warehouse management system by deploying automated solutions. The airline will work with DFL to test and implement initiatives to increase the efficiency of internal processes and advance its sustainability goals, as well as develop autonomous baggage transport and autonomous pallets for cargo warehousing.

“We are delighted to further expand our partnership with the Dubai Future Foundation to deploy innovative robotics solutions, and use advanced technologies and artificial intelligence across our business areas in Emirates Engineering, Dubai International Airport and ramp operations,” added Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ chief operating officer.

“This will give Emirates the opportunity to gain from DFF’s pool of experts and programmers, who will work with practical use cases and knowledge from the airline to enhance day to day operations, improve efficiency, as well as deliver further seamless experiences to our customers.”

Dubai Future Labs will work alongside dnata to research, develop and trial innovations to further improve safety, efficiency and sustainability across the company’s ground handling and cargo operations at Dubai International (DXB) and Dubai World Central (DWC) airports.

According to the MoU, Dubai Future Labs will support dnata in automating and converting its fleet into electric ground support equipment (GSE) and deploying robots to maximise operational and environmental efficiency. The partnership will also support dnata in achieving its strategic objectives and reducing its carbon footprint by 50 per cent by 2030.

“Our partnership with Dubai Future Foundation will accelerate the deployment of cutting-edge technologies across our operations. It will help us further improve productivity and sustainability, and consistently deliver world-class services for our partners, including Dubai Airports and our airline customers,” noted Steve Allen, CEO of dnata Group.

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