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OpenThe focus was on partnerships rather than mega deals as Dubai 2015 opened Sunday with more than 1,100 exhibitors from around the world descending on the city to showcase their products.

Aircraft orders worth more than US$200 billion were announced at the previous show in 2013, but analysts say they don’t expect any major deals this time as airlines have ordered enough airplanes to meet their demands.

Instead, manufactures like Boeing and Airbus are expected to announce partnerships with regional aerospace companies.

The UAE Space Agency is one of the new exhibitors at the show. The government organization was created last year to regulate and support the country’s space sector.

spaceDubai Ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who opened the airshow, also toured the space agency pavilion.

“With the addition of the UAE Space Agency to our existing exhibitor list, we have added yet another dimension to the Dubai Airshow,” said Michele van Akelijen, managing director of F&E Aerospace, the organizers of the Dubai Airshow.

Dubai 2015 has also added a dedicated 3D print pavilion, 3D Printshow Dubai.

“With (3D printing leader) Stratasys recently reported to have 3D printed more than 1,000 in-flight parts for the Airbus A350 XWB aircraft and GE already developing and testing engines with 3D printed parts, the technology is a natural fit for inclusion in the Dubai Airshow,” the organizers said.

In other show news:

Bombardier Commercial Aircraft announced that the CS100 flight test program is almost complete.

Fred“Only a few tests remain to be completed and Bombardier is on track to have the aircraft certified this year with Transport Canada,” said president Fred Cromer (right).

“We’re proud to be moving into the entry-in-service and production phase as we look to deliver the aircraft in the first half of 2016 to SWISS, a customer that has been with the program from the beginning.”

airBombardier also announced that Riga, Latvia-based airBaltic will be the launch customer of the CS300 aircraft when it takes delivery in the second half of 2016.

The Latvian flag carrier has 13 CS300 aircraft on firm order and retains options for seven CS300 aircraft.

“Bombardier’s CS300 airliners are integral to the execution of airBaltic’s business development strategy and fleet optimization plan,” said Martin Gauss, CEO of airBaltic.
airbal“The CS300 aircraft has exceeded our expectations in terms of its noise and emissions footprint, aligned with airBaltic’s low environmental impact vision, ” he added.

“Additionally, it will offer airBaltic passengers a widebody, unparalleled in-flight passenger experience, perfectly complementing our modern fleet of 12 Bombardier Q400 turboprops.”

The show runs until Thursday.

Images are courtesy of Dubai Media Office, UAE Space Agency, airBaltic and Bombardier. The CS100 photo is by Abdul Latheef.