Portland, Maine – USA, September 13, 2023 – Commercial drone professionals gathered last week for Commercial UAV Expo 2023, held September 5-7, 2023, at Caesars Forum in Las Vegas. The ninth annual event hosted 206 exhibitors from 22 countries and 3,449 verified professionals from all 50 U.S. states and 54 countries out of 4,008 registrants, continuing to cement itself as the leading international trade show and conference focusing on the integration and operation of commercial UAS.
“Year after year the turnout has been tremendous and continues to grow,” said Lee Corkhill, Group Event Director at Diversified Communications, organizer of Commercial UAV Expo. “Commercial UAV Expo has proven to be the opportunity of the year for anyone who needs to keep up with commercial UAS technology, trends, operating standards and increasingly, workforce development.”
The event kicked off Tuesday, September 5, with extensive pre-conference programming, including the FAA’s announcement of a new charter designed to refocus the Drone Safety Team. Live Outdoor Flying Demonstrations were hosted in cooperation with Sundance Media Group and participating vendors Autel Robotics, Event 38 Unmanned Systems, Frontier Precision Unmanned, ideaForge and Skyfish. These vendors showcased new, cutting-edge commercial drone solutions and a sophisticated A/V set up allowed attendees to see the data and images as they were being captured. Exhibitor Showcase presentations highlighted use cases for drones for inspection, law enforcement, drone delivery, and more.
The expanded exhibit hall floor – the largest in the event’s history – opened Tuesday evening, buzzing with commercial drone professionals exploring solutions from among the 206 exhibitors showcasing new technology, hardware, and software to help solve the unique challenges facing the UAS industry.
Wednesday morning, more than 1,000 attendees packed the conference room to hear Commercial UAV Expo’s Opening Keynote, which encouraged FAA-drone industry collaboration and looked at the future of AI and drones. Lee Corkhill, Event Director at Commercial UAV Expo, and Commercial Drone Alliance’s Executive Director and Commercial UAV Expo Advisory Board member Lisa Ellman delivered opening keynote remarks, followed by a fireside chat with David H. Boulter, the FAA’s Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety.
For the second part of the keynote, the program shifted from regulations to the advent of artificial intelligence (AI). To explore the many sides of this issue, Kay Wackwitz, the CEO & Founder of Drone Industry Insights, moderated a panel discussion featuring Brendan Groves, Vice President of Regulatory & Policy Affairs at Skydio, Barrit Lovelace of Collins Engineers, and Travis Mason, Chief Policy and Regulatory Officer at Merlin Labs. The full discussion is available online.
Thursday morning began with a keynote that explored the many ways drone technology, human expertise, and government polices interact and how improving those interactions is essential to the future of the industry. Martin Cookson, Director of Digital Service Innovation for Cambridge Consultants, noted contributions by many individuals with different talents and backgrounds to realize the potential of what is projected to be a $30 billion industry by 2030.
To further explore the intersections between people, UAV technology, and regulations, Dr. Joseph J. Cione, Lead Meteorologist for Emerging Technologies at NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, followed Cookson’s presentation to talk about his work using drones for hurricane detection and monitoring.
Building the topic of public and private interactions in the drone space, the keynote concluded with an open discussion featuring Lisa Ellman of the Commercial Drone Alliance, Jeffrey Vincent, the FAA’s Executive Director for the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration Office in Aviation Safety, and Brandon Roberts, the FAA’s Executive Director of the Office of Rulemaking. All keynote presentations are accessible online.
The overall conference program focused on critical industry topics, including the use of AI, drone delivery, airspace development, regulatory developments, industry-specific challenges, and more. Over 150 speakers from leading companies and organizations presented or participated in panel discussions, including drone experts from Amazon, DJI, Duke Energy, Federal Aviation Administration, Elroy Air, Florida Power & Light, John Deere, Department of Homeland Security, Merlin Labs, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Percepto, Southern Company, US Department of Transportation, Walmart, Wing, Zipline and more.
Special features of the 2023 event included numerous networking events, an at-capacity University Roundtable, the Pitch the Press competition, vendor-delivered exhibitor showcases, a new two-part Advanced Airspace Summit and the DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Summit, which featured two full days of programming for drone operators and program managers across law enforcement, fire, search & rescue, and other emergency services.
Commercial UAV Expo was supported by 339 publications, portals, associations, user groups, analysts, cooperating events, and government agencies, covering six continents. “We are thrilled to have such far-reaching global support, as nearly a quarter of our attendees are traveling internationally to participate,” expressed Corkhill. “These groups recognize Commercial UAV Expo as the leading global event in the commercial drone space.”
The next edition of Commercial UAV Expo takes place September 3-5, 2024 at Caesars Forum in Las Vegas. Stay up to date by inquiring about attending or exhibiting, and continue to follow Commercial UAV News for post-event coverage.
About Commercial UAV Expo
Commercial UAV Expo is produced by Diversified Communications’ technology portfolio which also includes Commercial UAV News; Geo Week, Geo Week Newsletter, 3D Technology Newsletter, AEC Innovations Newsletter, Geo Business (UK) and Digital Construction Week (UK).
For more information about exhibiting at the Commercial UAV Expo, visit the exhibitor information page or contact Kat McDonald, Sales Manager, at [email protected] or +1.207-842-5646 or Dominique, Caron, Sales Representative, at [email protected] or + (207) 842-5404. For attending information, visit https://www.expouav.com/ or email [email protected].
Commercial UAV Expo Senior Marketing Manager