Emirates Group opens new innovation centre featuring AI, VR and 3D products

The Innovation Majlis at its Dubai headquarters aims to enable 'greater exchange of cutting-edge ideas'

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Dubai's Emirates Group has launched a new innovation platform at its headquarters, featuring products powered by artificial intelligence as well as virtual reality and 3D exhibits set to transform the aviation sector.

The Innovation Majlis is a research and development platform that fuses present and future technology, aimed at supporting its staff to "explore new horizons, discover innovative solutions and drive the future of the aviation industry", the company said in a statement on Monday.

The majlis aims to facilitate the "greater exchange of cutting-edge ideas" and will showcase the latest in robotics, hyper-reality, holograms, 3D printers and other advanced technology, it said.

Exhibits include an autonomous mobile manipulator developed by Dubai Future Labs, a robot used for order deliveries; AI-powered glasses for augmented reality that allows people to interact virtually with others, products and services; as well as haptic gloves for natural XR interactions, which enables touch interaction in virtual reality.

Other services include 3D-printing solutions, optimised video-conferencing, automatic wireless charging, advanced water filtration and 3D holographic displays with generative AI functions.

“The Emirates Group has always been a trailblazer in the aviation industry and innovation is fundamental to our core values, our culture and our mindset," said Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed, chairman and chief executive of Emirates airline and Group.

"The Innovation Majlis ... will bring our partners, top tech companies and entities together in one space to address key challenges affecting our industry today.”

The aviation industry is undergoing a technological transformation as the sector embraces innovations designed to make travel easier and more seamless.

Emirates has been adopting the use of technology to keep pace with the changes and drive efficiency.

In March, it launched Sara, the world’s first check‑in robot assistant that aims to add to a faster travel experience.

Last week, the company announced it was planning a "mammoth" recruitment drive, in which it will use latest technology such as digital assessments, AI and other recruitment systems to select "in the most efficient and effective ways".

In May, the airline started phasing out paper boarding passes for most passengers departing from its Dubai airport in a move to boost its sustainability drive and promote a digital-first strategy.

Also that month, the world's biggest long-haul carrier announced it had earmarked $200 million to fund research and development projects focused on advanced fuel technology that can reduce commercial aviation's environmental impact.

Updated: July 11, 2023, 4:24 AM