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DEFSEC ATLANTIC 2018: The Halifax-based Defence, Security and Aerospace Exhibition (DEFSEC) and the Atlantic Canada International Air Show share common origins with the Nova Scotia International Airshow and this year, industry "strutted its stuff" on the grounds of CFB Shearwater, as military, civil and performance aircraft flew above.

More than two decades ago, the "ground display" became a separate event, initially setting up at Halifax's World Trade and Convention and ultimately settling into its current home at Pier 23, near the mouth of the historic Halifax harbour.

Second only to CANSEC in Ottawa, DEFSEC offers a major networking opportunity for the industries which take advantage of its proximity to and co-location with Nova Scotia's many universities and Canadian Armed Forces facilities.

In fact, Halifax is the only city outside Ottawa where the three military services have operational headquarters.

DEFSEC 2018 drew exhibitors and attendees from the global community. The 1,200 attendees and 100 exhibitors from 10 nations focused on Atlantic Canadian opportunities and the show's worldwide reach creates partnership potential for all attendees.

Previously conducted in September following the airshow, this year's show took place Oct. 2 to 4. The month-long"break" gave organizers the opportunity to liaise with the technical and technological departments of Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia Community College campuses throughout Nova Scotia and the University of Prince Edward Island Engineering School.

"This was a pilot project," DEFSEC organizer Colin Stephenson explained. "It exposed students and faculty to the employment opportunities presented by oceans technologies, aerospace and defence." Some returning exhibitors included:

GENERAL DYNAMICS MISSION SYSTEMS-CANADA

The company's exhibit displayed its cross-domain, multi-level command, control and communication (C3) capabilities among unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV), submarines and land-based mission operations centers.

THALES

The winner of the AJISS contract is a prime contractor and systems integrator for military communications and weapons control systems and mission critical C4ISR solutions. The company also supplies avionics for civilian regional and business aircraft; transportation systems that focus on electronic systems; and cybersecurity systems.

IRVING SHIPBUILDING

The sole supplier of warships to the Royal Canadian Navy, proudly displayed models of the Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, which will bring new capability to and expand year-round operational areas for the navy.

COVE (THE CENTRE FOR OCEAN VENTURES & ENTREPRENEURSHIP)

This is a collaborative facility for applied innovation in the ocean sector to support ocean technology commercialization. COVE opened its doors on June 6 on the Dartmouth waterfront's former Canadian Coast Guard facility.The facility is a unique location for applied innovation in the ocean sector. At least 40 organizations, including start-up companies, small and medium sized enterprises, large firms and post-secondary expertise, are anticipated to share this common home to encourage partnership, synergy and collaboration.

KOGNITIV SPARK

Based in Fredericton, NB, this company uses Microsoft Hololens[TM] and augmented reality to give frontline workers expert support without travel time and costs, and equipment downtime. Utilizing low bandwidth Wi-Fi, a subject matter expert can see what the HoloLens wearer sees from anywhere in the world. The expert can provide guidance using real-time voice and video, interactive holograms and 3D content, and live Internet of Things (loT) data.

QRA

Based in Halifax, this company's software detects errors in software systems and project development resulting from poorly written, ambiguous, and inconsistent requirements. Their products assist business analysts, project managers, and engineers increase clarity, consistency, and quality of their requirements documentation using many of the commercial off-the-shelf authoring and management applications.

DEFSEC has become a "must visit" event and certainly it is a true powerhouse for promoting collaboration, cooperation and partnership between the defence industry and Canada's Navy, Army and Air Force.

BY BEN SABBATH

Ben Sabbath is a Halifax-based freelance writer
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Title Annotation:TRADESHOW & CONFERENCE REPORT
Author:Sabbath, Ben
Publication:Canadian Defence Review
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Oct 1, 2018
Words:564
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