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Advanced Engineering show returns to NEC after two years

12 October, 2021

The Advanced Engineering UK show will return to the NEC, Birmingham on 3 and 4 November, 2021 for the first time in almost two years.

There will be seven zones – aerospace, composites, automotive, performance metals, connected manufacturing, medical devices and, new for 2021, space and satellite. Also, for the first time, Advanced Engineering UK’s sister show, Lab Innovations, will take place in the same hall.

There will be four forums during the two-day show, with presentations from engineering and manufacturing leaders. During the connected manufacturing forum, Ian Gardner, Industry 4.0 and Oracle specialist at IBM, and Stephen Phipson, CEO of Make UK, will deliver keynote speeches. They’ll be supported by speakers from the Connected Places Catapult, Brunel University London and IoT North, among others.

In the automotive forum, electrification and sustainability will be major themes, with talks from JCB, Ford, the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC), Jaguar Land Rover and others.

In the show’s Enabling Innovation zone, supported by Innovate UK, ten start-ups will showcase products or technologies, before presenting them to a panel of judges for the chance of winning a stand at next year’s show.

Visitors to the show will be able to see a prototype of the ExoMars rover, created by Airbus Defence and Space. The rover is semi-autonomous and equipped with the same technology as the final vehicle, including the sensors, actuators and cameras that allow it to see in 3D while navigating Mars.

Also on display will be RS Electric Boat’s Pulse 63 powered by a battery pack derived from the automotive industry. Instead of a traditional propeller, the boat is propelled by a rim drive, increasing its efficiency and cutting its weight.

The Advanced Engineering show is returning to the NEC for the first time in two years

Also being demonstrated is an electric wheelchair on tank-style tracks, which can climb and descend stairs or traverse hilly terrain. The Igan (I Go Anywhere Now) wheelchair, designed and built by former nuclear engineer, John Ross, is narrow enough to fit through doors and small enough to load into cars. The seat is pivoted as close to the ground as possible to lower the centre of gravity, while linear actuators keep the seat horizontal.

The University of Warwick will showcase its TT-capable electric racing motorcycle, Frontier, based on a Norton Motorcycles frame. The bike has been adapted by a student team to be fitted with a 160kW electric powertrain, as well as batteries and control systems designed in-house. The powertrain delivers 400Nm of torque from a standing start. The acceleration and speed characteristics of the electric bike are similar to those of a 900–1,000cc combustion-engined machine. The electric motor draws its power from an immersion-cooled battery pack thought to be the first of its kind in an electric motorcycle. Robust thermal management strategies allow the 16kWh battery to last longer, while also providing the large short-term power peaks required by a racing motorbike.

More than 10,000 manufacturing professionals attended the 2019 Advanced Engineering show, and 70% reported that they planned to place orders as a result of the relationships formed at the event. Some 93% of the exhibitors reported that they achieved their objectives for the show.

This year, Advanced Engineering UK is relaunching AE Connect, a digital platform used to schedule meetings ahead of the show. In 2019, the platform was used to schedule 588 meetings, generating an average order value of £200,000 per meeting.

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