September 2019, Dubai

Interview with Dr. Saud Aldajah, Head of Electromechanical Engineering, Abu Dhabi Polytechnic

Our reasons for coming on-board as a University Partner

The awareness of automation in the industrial development is at its infancy in the Middle East region.  The main goal in getting on board with SPS Automation Middle East is to play a role in increasing the awareness about the importance of automation and the available academic programs in the UAE.

Our expectations for this inaugural event

We want to increase the awareness about the importance of automation, and explore the latest developments in this important field.  We also want to explore areas of collaboration with international leaders in this area.

The importance of educational institutes to be involved

It’s extremely important for us to be a part of such an event because we want to give the local industry an idea about our existing automation programs, while providing our students a platform to interact with industrial leaders in this area.

We also want to give our faculty an opportunity to further develop our curriculum by exploring the latest development in the field, and at the same time examine the latest lab equipment that can be utilized in our curriculum.

Education’s role in developing the region’s automation sector

Education plays a vital role in developing the region’s automation sector by providing specialized programs in this important area. The Abu Dhabi Polytechnic provides specialized training such as the FACT centre which is the only centre in the Middle East that is authorized by FESTO to provide training in the pneumatics hydraulics and automation technologies.

Preparing our students for the next phase of automation

ADPoly has invested a lot in the Factory Automation area by establishing a state of art labs. The students receive vigorous training on the latest equipment in this field. Furthermore, the students at ADPoly are encouraged to take international certifications before graduation such as SMCP, FESTO and NEBOSH.

The future of Middle East automation

The automation sector will have a bright future in the UAE. Currently, it’s in the early stages and I believe events such as SPS Automation Middle East will offer a great opportunity for this industry to develop and to initiate international collaborations which will eventually lead to the development of this sector.

Key challenges facing automation 

The main Challenge is the lack of appreciation for this sector’s importance. Also, the slow transformation is a key challenge.

Regional opportunities in an emerging market

I believe this market will be developing at a very high pace since the UAE government is investing a lot in the manufacturing sector.