Looking back at NCT Europe 2022
23-25 May, 2022, Munich
On 23-25 May 2022, IB Consultancy and the CBRNe Society launched NCT Europe 2022 at the Universitaet der Bundeswehr Muenchen, in Germany. More than 300 delegates from different geographical regions and professional backgrounds – government agencies, first responders, military officers, industry, and academia members – attended the event. NCT Europe featured a one-day industry exhibition where over 50 sponsors and exhibitors presented their state-of-the-art technologies in the CBRNe field, a two-day NCT PRO training for European and American teams from the security field, and two-day conference sessions. Additionally, in parallel to the NCT Europe conference, NCT Europe hosted the Union Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM) funded FORMATEX23 CBRN Technologies User workshop. Discussions addressed the latest trends in the field of CBRN, C-IED, and EOD.
Throughout the two-day Formatex sessions, experts from the public sector including the EU Commission emphasized the need for combining scientific findings and practical experience, drawing on the lessons learned from other EU research projects. Presentations revolved around the importance of applying a bottom-up approach to address unexpected and non-conventional threats, with speakers from both the public and private sectors also stressing the need to increase efficiency and avoid the duplication of efforts. The EU Commission representative explained how the EU is doubling up efforts to assist Ukraine in the CBRNe field in coordination with other international organizations, highlighting the creation of asymmetrically placed hubs for CBRNe emergencies on an EU level (Croatia, Germany, Spain). Formatex attendees could also learn about Romania's CBRN capabilities, where firefighters are integrated within the Ministry of Defense and where 50% of its counties are in possession of CBRN decontamination equipment. Companies presenting at Formatex flagged the importance of having multifunctional and interoperable equipment in place, as compatibility with other existing solutions (e.g air-ground platforms, ambulance stretchers) would very much facilitate the tasks of the first responders. Industry members explained the usefulness of their state-of-the-art technologies in CBRN scenarios, for instance, when detecting gamma sources of radiation (mostly used by fire departments), or when integrating their chemical sensors into a car or an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).