AOC Electronic Warfare, Saudi Arabia – Chairmans Report

AOC Electronic Warfare  |

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia  |  11th – 13th November 2013  |

Chairman’s Report.


This 3rd Electronic Warfare (EW) Symposium to be held in Saudi Arabia was hosted by the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), through its Advanced Sensors and Electronic Defence (ASED) Centre.

The event was held in collaboration with the Saudi MOD and with the AOC, with principal sponsors BAE SYSTEMS and Selex ES, and organised by Tangent Link.

The conference was preceded on 11 Nov 13 by a series of specialist sponsor workshops: BAE and Selex on Elint; Thales on EW Data Flow; PLATH on COMINT; Rohde and Schwarz on Global Communications; Elettronica on ECM; and CSIR on EW Modelling and Simulation.

The Conference had an elaborate Opening Ceremony on 12 Nov 13, with an inaugural address of the AOC Saudi Chapter of the AOC by Dr Sultan K M Almorqi, Director of the ASED Centre, followed by an AOC Address by Lt Gen Bob Elder USAF Retd. The Saudi MOD welcome was given by their CDS, HE Gen Hussein bin Abdullah Al-Qubail, and the KACST welcome by their Vice President HH Dr Turki bin Saud bin Mohammed Al-Saud. This was followed by an awards ceremony to recognise 9 Saudi officials for their work in enhancing EW in the Kingdom.

The Keynote Address for the Conference was then given by the Chairman, on behalf of ACM Sir Glenn Torpy, BAE Systems UK, who could not be present. The remaining sessions of the day covered UK experience of RM EW exploitation in Afghanistan, developments in EW test facilities (BAE), EW operational support, future technology (Selex ES), computer EW language, and the UK’s EW range at RAF Spadeadam. At the end of the day, there was a public signing of an agreement between BAE Systems and Selex ES to work together on projects in the region.

The speakers on Day 2 developed the themes of Platform Protection, and there was a comprehensive session on Cyber and EW from a representative of the Saudi MOD, and Cyber Protection from Dr Mohammed Alahbabi of the UAE Armed Forces. A Keynote Address was then delivered by Lt-Gen Elder on Maximising EW/ISR capabilities in an Austere Budget Environment, and the day rounded off with presentations on emerging technology, simulation and modelling for EW test and evaluation.

The large audience (over 600 on Day 1, and roughly half that at start of Day 2) clearly relished the return of the EW Conference back to Saudi after a gap of several years. This was reflected in the penetrating questions from the audience after each presentation, and the lively interest in the sponsors’ stands in the Exhibition Hall. The detailed organisation of the Conference by Tangent Link was well appreciated by the speakers and delegates alike, and this all bodes well for holding future EW and related conferences in the Kingdom.


Philip Sturley
Conference Chairman