The upcoming Singapore air show and its attendant events will focus on innovation and the future of the industry.
At a media briefing prior to the show, the head of the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), Kevin Shum, shared a conceptual video of the industry's future.
It shows blended wing aircraft constantly connected to the ground and other aircraft by high-bandwidth data streams. Artificial intelligence manages air traffic control with minimal human input. Any technical issue that occurs on an aircraft in flight is dealt with immediately by a team of experts on the ground.
In the airport all processes are automated. Passengers clear security simply by walking through an invisible barrier, baggage following on a robotic trolley. Defying gravity, flying cars race along above city streets, reminiscent of the movie Blade Runner.
"We are very much at the cusp of the next technological revolution for the aviation industry," says Shum. "On the aircraft side you've got new aircraft and new manufacturers coming in, and even supersonic travel is being talked about. There is also talk about hybrid and even electric engines."
Shum made the presentation with Leck Chet Lam, managing director of Experia Events, organiser of the Singapore show.
Key events accompanying the show will the Singapore Airshow Aviation Leadership Summit, which will gather key industry figures and government officials to discuss the sector. The theme this year is "Reimagining Aviation's Future".
Other events accompanying the air show include the Singapore Aerospace Technology and Engineering Conference (SATEC), and the Aerospace Technology and Leadership Forum (ATLF).
SATEC, the more technical of the two conferences, brings together researchers, operators, and engineers to discuss engineering and technology advances. ATLF - which is organised by Singapore's Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) - provides a space for aerospace industry leaders to discuss where research and development efforts are heading.
ATLF panel discussions include representatives from companies such as Airbus, Bombardier, Honeywell, Rolls-Royce, Boeing, Embraer, Panasonic, Pratt & Whitney, Safran, and ST Aerospace.
Leck says the show will see several new exhibitors. These include Honda Aircraft, Turkish Aerospace Industries, Russia's United Engine Corporation, and more Chinese companies.