Dubai witnessed a remarkable demonstration of the Gravity Jet suit and autonomous buses as integral components of its self-driving transportation endeavors. These pioneering initiatives took center stage at the third iteration of the Dubai World Congress for Autonomous Transport, which commenced in Dubai on a Tuesday.
The inauguration of the Congress was an honor bestowed by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council. Sheikh Hamdan also extended his commendation to the victors of the Dubai World Challenge for Autonomous Transport.
This event, meticulously orchestrated by Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), witnessed the active participation of a multitude of international stakeholders, featuring 53 distinguished speakers. Among them were eminent executives, scholars, specialists, and innovators in the realm of autonomous mobility technology. The congress, a pioneering trade exposition within the Middle East, set the stage for the display of cutting-edge technologies in the sphere of intelligent and sustainable transportation, with representation from over 40 exhibitors, each affiliated with leading organizations.
Smart Self-Driving Transport
Mattar Al Tayer, the Director General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors at RTA, emphasized that hosting this congress aligns perfectly with RTA’s commitment to advancing the Dubai Strategy for Intelligent Autonomous Transportation. This visionary strategy, set into motion by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, aims to transition 25% of transportation journeys in Dubai into intelligent and autonomous experiences by the year 2030.
Following Mr. Al Tayer’s remarks, Sam Rogers, widely recognized as “Flying Man” and serving as the Test Pilot and Design Lead at Gravity Industries, took the stage to deliver a keynote address. In his eloquent discourse, he delved into the future of mobility, focusing on the Gravity Jet Suit—a cutting-edge, 3D-printed marvel that stands as the world’s swiftest jetpack.
“We have initiated the deployment of the jetpack suit in multiple countries across the globe, and it’s heartening to see paramedics adopting it as a means to swiftly reach patients, envisioning it as a promising future mode of transportation. Our ongoing endeavors are squarely focused on the production and advancement of a broader range of jet suits, harnessing cutting-edge technology to craft high-thrust and electric variants. Our ambition is to proliferate the utilization of jet suits on a global scale, with plans to host jet suit races in cities around the world, Dubai included,” he remarked.
Dubai World Challenge for Self-Driving Transport
Sheikh Hamdan also had the opportunity to view a video presentation concerning the Dubai World Challenge for Autonomous Transport, which boasts an impressive total prize fund of US$2.3 million. This challenge garnered an exceptional 27 submissions from diverse countries worldwide, surpassing the set targets by a remarkable 130% in the Industry Leaders category and an astonishing 175% in the Local Academia category. Within the Industry Leaders category, five international corporations successfully advanced to the final stage, while the Local Academia category featured participation from five universities.
The featured film provided insights into the rigorous testing procedures conducted at a dedicated site within the Dubai Silicon Oasis, in collaboration with the Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority, adhering rigorously to stringent safety protocols. These tests encompassed a wide spectrum of factors, including traffic safety, the continuous enhancement of autonomous technologies integrated into buses, and the optimization of passenger comfort. Furthermore, the presentation shed light on RTA’s unwavering commitment to reliability, its visionary outlook, innovative capabilities, wealth of experience, and its holistic approach, encompassing both the operational and added value aspects of the transportation ecosystem.