By Joseph Roukoz.
One of the very first aviation and defence exhibitions to be hit by the COID-19 crisis in February 2019, which limited the attendance but did not stopped the event to take place, the Singapore Airshow will be also one of the very few to avoid being stopped by the pandemic, and the consequent crisis that hit the commercial aviation sector, this biennial event taking place from February 15 to 18 at the Changi Exhibition Center.
The 2022 edition of the Singapore Airshow was inaugurated on Day 1 of the exhibition by The Minister for Defence Ng Eng Hen (right) and the Minister for Transport S Iswaran (left).
This 8th edition brings together some 600 exhibitors from 39 countries, according to the organizers, who expect 13,000 visitors to attend the show, a limited number compared to the pre-COVID era but a good sign of re-start.
Compared to the old times, airshows are more and more focused on commercial aviation, and this is one of the reasons that led to the cancellation of some of the key events of that mind in the last couple of years. The recovery of the aviation industry is therefore taking center-stage at this year’s Airshow. The second key subject is of course the climate change. To this end, the Singapore Airshow 2022 partnered with Alton Aviation Consultancy to organise the “Sustainable Aviation Forum” scheduled for 16 and 17 February. Experts from public and private sectors will discuss challenges and opportunities within sustainable aviation, including the topic of sustainability of future technology in areas of air mobility and aviation operations. Focus areas include the roles of regulators, innovations in engine technology, sustainable aviation fuel, and maintenance, repair and overhaul.
That said, defence remains a key issue, especially in Asia, where China is definitely showing its will to extend its dominance on some key areas. In e mean time the United States of America have re-oriented their strategic interest towards the far East, albeit the Ukrainian situation might bring again some focus on Europe. In this situation the Singaporean Armed Forces, as well as the military instruments of many Asian countries are seeking to modernise their assets in order to improve their capabilities, to be able to cope with all kind of potential threats. The Singapore Airshow is therefore a forum where key regional players are meeting to discuss their defence issues, and to touch first hand the new weapon systems that might become soon part of their arsenals.
A key element in an airshow is definitely the flight display. Here military aircraft will be the majority. The host nation air force will fly one F-16C fighter jet flying a solo display, as well as a two AH-64D Apache attack helicopters. Flying for the first time the Indian Air Force will fly its Tejas Light Combat Aircraft at the Singapore Airshow. The Indonesian Air Force six KT-1B Woong Bee aircraft painted in red and white forming the “Jupiter” aerobatic team will also perform in front of the Singapore Airshow visitors. The most modern aircraft part of the display will definitely be the F-35B Lightning II of the United States Marine Corps, the world’s first short-takeoff, vertical landing stealth fighter, the US Air Force being present at the show with a old but still valid aircraft, the B-52 Stratofortress, that will perform a fly-by over the exhibition area. The Singapore Airshow does not limit the presence of military equipment to aviation-related products; many industries, first of all national ones, will take advantage of the event taking place at the Changi Exhibition Center to exhibit also naval and land systems.
Hereafter the articles by the EDR On-Line team on some of the new items exhibited at the Singapore Airshow: