x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

100,000 flock to science fair

Organisers say they got a great turnout for the Abu Dhabi Science Festival.

ABU DHABI // More than 100,000 people visited the emirate's science festival last week, organisers say.

Ahmed Al Calily, the director general of the Technology Development Committee (TDC), said it had proved such a success it would become an annual event.

Mr Al Calily said it had provided an inspiration for local talent.

"These numbers show there is a clear hunger and thirst for knowledge," he said. "We created an event that we hoped would influence people's perceptions and children's career choices."

The festival, which ended on Saturday, featured workshops and more than 150 exhibitions across the emirate. Attractions included a robot zoo, an emergency ward, an Egyptian archaeological site and a chemistry lab.

There was also an exhibition titled 1,001 Inventions, which featured innovations from the golden age of Islam. This display and other events will continue at the Corniche until December 24.

More than 16,000 of the visitors were schoolchildren, including Mehak Bhatia. The 11-year-old was impressed by "Jetman" Yves Rossy, who flew with jet wings.

"It's amazing looking at how technology has changed since ancient times, from developing aeroplanes to allowing a man to fly on his own," Mehak said.

Mehak's father, Subhash, said: "It's a fantastic initiative."

mismail@thenational.ae