Smart Machines & Factories
Smart Industry Expo and co-located shows rescheduled to take place on 25th-27th January 2021
Published:  06 April, 2020

The biennial co-located events; Smart Industry Expo, Drives & Controls, Fluid Power & Systems, Plant & Asset Management, and Air-Tech Exhibitions – have been rescheduled to January 25th-27th 2021, due to the COVID-19 outbreak. These extra months will help give the industry the space to recover and the opportunity to present their technologies, innovations and solutions in an upturning market with no restrictions on travel. The events will continue to be co-located with MACH.

DFA Media Ltd, organiser of Smart Industry Expo and co-located shows, says it has been actively monitoring and following advice regarding the Coronavirus outbreak (Covid-19) over the past weeks. As a consequence, it has decided that Smart Industry Expo and its co-located events will be postponed and rescheduled for 25th-27th January 2021, which will take place alongside MACH Exhibition.

Managing director of DFA Media, organiser of the co-location of event, commented: “As the effects, actual and projected, of Coronavirus have become increasingly evident across all aspects of our lives both here in the UK and across the globe, it was necessary, as a responsible events organiser, to take the necessary steps to ensure the health and wellbeing of all our exhibitors, contractors and visitors (many of whom face travel restrictions), which is our top priority.” He added: “It is therefore with reluctance that we have taken the decision to postpone the event until January.”

However by working closely with its venue partners, THE NEC, Atkinson said DFA Media has been able to secure rescheduled dates for these events in January, alongside MACH, explaining: “Current modeling projections suggest that the virus will peak in around June and decline thereafter during the following months allowing our exhibitors the opportunity to present their technologies, innovations and solutions in an upturning market with no restrictions on travel.”

He added: “The rescheduled date provides clarity and ensures we have time and space to deliver the same high-quality event we promised, providing a safe and secure environment conducive to business, networking and career development for the manufacturing sector that we serve.”

The new dates for the now firmly established Smart Industry Expo, will continue to offer visitors the ideal opportunity to learn about digitalisation and how to prepare and implement a strategy in this smart era as well as being able to discuss a wide range of issues from components to Predictive Maintenance 4.0, Logistics 4.0, and smart grid technologies amongst others. Other areas covered include: components for IT-based automation solutions that will bring fundamental change to all in-factory processes, IT security, as well as smart technologies that manage and coordinate power, gas and heat networks so that capacity can be balanced and optimally deployed across the entire energy system – integrated energy, plus much more.

Drives & Controls Exhibition 2021 will also once again bring together key suppliers of state-of-the-art equipment representing the multi-tasking culture of today’s design engineer, covering critical areas such as energy efficiency, machine safety, drives, motion control, robotics and automation plus much more, all under one roof. With the advent of the smart factory, Drives & Controls Exhibition 2021 is an essential source of technological and engineering information and is fully supported by GAMBICA and EPTDA.


New for the rescheduled January 2021 date is the significant announcement that the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) has confirmed a 100m2 pavilion within Smart Industry Expo, and Drives & Controls where it will be joined by its members.

The MTC was established in 2010 as an independent research & technology organisation with the objective of bridging the gap between academia and industry. Its role has also increased to cover not only R&D but also training, advanced manufacturing management and factory design and it now has over 700 employees working with it. The MTC has helped hundreds of companies across a range of industries and over 100 of them have become members of the MTC. Its presence at Smart Industry Expo and Drives & Controls highlights the importance that the MTC attributes to these key sectors.

Running alongside Drives & Controls Exhibition and Smart Industry Expo, will also be Air-Tech 2021, which is set to highlight current key themes related to the very latest in air compressor and related technology from companies from around the globe. The event is supported by the British Compressed Air Society (BCAS), and is the UK’s only dedicated event for the compressed air and generators market.

Vanda Jones, the British Compressed Air Society’s executive director, commented on its presence at the key industry event: “As the UK’s only dedicated exhibition for the compressed air, generators and vacuum market, Air-Tech is an ideal chance for visitors to keep up to date with all the latest developments in our industry. For BCAS, it is an ideal opportunity to engage with manufacturers, distributors and end users alike, and for us to provide impartial advice about legislation, standards and technical issues.”

The co-location will also include Plant & Asset Management 2021, the UK’s premier event for plant, asset, maintenance and works management engineers and directors.

Industry spends huge sums of money maintaining its plant, machinery and building assets and, because of constantly increasing business and financial pressures, there is an on-going need to achieve the maximum performance from those assets.

Plant & Asset Management 2021 will therefore showcase the very latest in condition monitoring, CMMS, outsourcing/contract maintenance, energy efficiency, boilers/burners/combustion, handling and storage plus much more.

The Society for Operations Engineers (SOE) will also be having a major presence at Plant & Asset Management 2021, where it will be promoting efficient and environmentally sustainable operations engineering, through the support of best practice, health and safety initiatives and a commitment to the professional development of its members. The Society will be able to speak about how it can help visitors’ careers in engineering with professional recognition through the Engineering Council, technical guides, accreditation standards, CPD events and much more.

In addition Fluid Power & Systems 2021, will focus on a comprehensive range of hydraulic and pneumatic equipment, together with products that facilitate better electro-mechanic system design and application for improved process automation, control, monitoring and analytics.

Fully supported by the British Fluid Power Association (BFPA), Fluid Power & Systems comprises the largest gathering of world-class companies displaying and demonstrating the latest in mechanical and electro-mechanical equipment.

Chris Buxton, CEO of the British Fluid Power Association, commented on the Association’s decision to exhibit again at Fluid Power & Systems: “There is no better event for the fluid power market than Fluid Power & Systems.”

Whatever your industrial sector, whether engineering, construction, offshore/marine, oil & gas, agriculture/farming, automotive, aerospace etc., Fluid Power & Systems offers a convenient one-stop shop for all your fluid power and system requirements.

DIgitalisation and Engineering Forums

At a time when engineers are under increasing pressure, and time out of the office for attending exhibitions needs to be balanced against heavy workloads, one growing justification is attending a well-balanced and focused seminar programme where gaining further industry knowledge is at the core.

Located at the heart of the 2021 co-location are The Digitalisation and Engineering Forums. With a strong emphasis on technology, The Engineering Forum will bring together all aspects of plant and asset management, hydraulics, pneumatics, robotics and automation, energy efficiency, machine safety, drives, motion control, legislation, system strategies and technological developments. Featuring representatives from across industry including government agencies, research bodies, trade associations, and manufacturers.

While The Digitalisation Forum, sponsored by Pilz, will fully reflect the ongoing global transformation to the smart manufacturing era and provide a fascinating insight into the potential plants of the future, covering all aspect of the digital transformation across the manufacturing spectrum. Leading expert will address the vast array of information around 4IR, discussing the practicalities, technologies and issues surrounding transition and implementation of digitalisation in UK manufacturing. Over the course of the three-day seminar programme, visitors will have the opportunity to learn how they can seize the opportunities that exist and promote the benefits of adopting emerging digital technologies.

The variety and scope of both Forum programmes for 2021 is extremely exciting, adding real value. The combination of leading manufacturing events, with a highly engaging seminar programme, will give visitors a genuine opportunity to keep abreast of the latest industry developments.

For regular show updates, full Digitalisation and Engineering Forum seminar programmes and to register to attend, please visit the official websites: