New satellite to upgrade remote sensing capability

Updated 21 January 2016
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New satellite to upgrade remote sensing capability

RIYADH: The International Conference on Remote Sensing concluded in Riyadh on Wednesday and the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), which sponsored the event, announced plans to launch a new satellite in cooperation with China which will upgrade its remote sensing facilities and services in the Kingdom.
Badr Al-Swaidan from the Institute of Space and Aviation Research of KACST said the city had completed preparation for the components of the Saudi satellite (Saudi SAT 5B) which is locally made. It will be launched by the Chinese space rocket (Long March 2D) to support remote sensing services in the Kingdom.
The project is within the framework of cooperation between the Kingdom and China in scientific fields which also includes the establishment of a genetic studies project.
He pointed out that KACST would work in cooperation with the Chinese navigation satellite on scientific studies to develop reception systems and the use of the Chinese navigation satellite system (similar to BeiDou Satellite Navigation System) and GPS. The systems will work efficiently in the Kingdom because of joint research which includes system monitoring and performance evaluation systems and integration.
According to an official from the organizing committee of the International Conference on Remote Sensing, there were more than 800 local and international delegates from different parts of the world.
“The conference, with a concurrent exhibition, was held under the patronage of the Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and was a big attraction for those interested in space technology,” he said.
The three-day event was co-sponsored by Saudi Aramco and other companies in the country. More than 30 national and global companies took part in the exhibition which ran concurrently with the three-day conference.
During the four-day conference, some 44 scientific papers were presented by local and international delegates.
A number of Saudi youths who have graduated in space technology in various Saudi universities displayed their achievements in various pavilions at the exhibition.
Anas Khalil Dahlawi from Falconviz, a company displaying services such as aerial mapping and aerial videography at the exhibition told Arab News that they had a drone mini-plane manufactured locally to take 3D aerial surveying.


Saudi Arabia ‘racing into the future’ with Formula E

Updated 15 December 2018
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Saudi Arabia ‘racing into the future’ with Formula E

  • A first for Saudi Arabia and the region, the event’s magnitude reflects the Kingdom’s goal of hosting major events and promoting them domestically and globally
  • “This is unprecedented and fabulous,” one concert-goer said. Another said: “I can’t believe I’m in Saudi Arabia.” 

RIYADH: Formula E is one for the books. Attracting fans from all over the world, the mega event — held in the historic Saudi town of Ad Diriyah, a UNESCO World Heritage Site — is set to revolutionize motorsports by using only electric race cars. 

Officially known as the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, the race expects to draw 40,000 attendees, with access not only to the race but also to the Kingdom’s largest ever festival for music, entertainment and cultural activities.

A first for Saudi Arabia and the region, the event’s magnitude reflects the Kingdom’s goal of hosting major events and promoting them domestically and globally.

A milestone was marked as Bandar Alesayi and Ahmed bin Khanen became the first Saudi I-Pace eTrophy racers, sponsored by the General Sports Authority (GSA). 

Both drivers predict increased grassroots support in the Kingdom for youths to train in carting and race-car driving.  

At 1.76 miles long with 21 corners, the track is somewhat tricky for first-time Formula E drivers.

“The system is like Mario Bros when they get the little star and go faster,” said Formula E founder and CEO Alejandro Agag. The new electric circuit in Saudi Arabia has been hailed as one of the best Formula E tracks.

The three-day event is hosting some of the world’s top singers, including Jason Derulo, Enrique Iglesias, Amr Diab, Black Eyed Peas, David Guetta and One Republic, along with DJ EJ. 

“This is unprecedented and fabulous,” one concert-goer said. Another said: “I can’t believe I’m in Saudi Arabia.” 

Outside the venue, Al-Bujairy, one of Ad Diriyah’s historic areas, hosts high-end restaurants, cafes and local designer outlets overlooking the historic district of At-Turaif, which was once home to the Saudi royal family and has newly opened for visitors.

Another area of interest is the Family Zone, with many events and activities to entertain all age groups. Men, women and children are given different driving experiences.

In Ad Diriyah’s Formula E, only one car is allowed per driver instead of two, making pit stops more crucial in terms of timing.  

“Attack mode” gives cars a temporary power boost from 200 to 225 kilowatts, equivalent to 268-302 horsepower. Drivers need to move to a certain area on the track to activate this mode.

“Saudi Arabia is racing into the future with Formula E, as we open the Kingdom to the world in a transformation that’s being supercharged by the Vision 2030 plan, driven forward by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman,” Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal Al-Saud, vice-chair of the Saudi Arabian General Sports Authority, told Arab News.