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Sep 30 2020

NCI Agency announces qualifiers of 2020 Defence Innovation Challenge

The NATO Communications and Information (NCI) Agency is pleased to announce the top eight qualifiers of the 2020 Defence Innovation Challenge.

The evaluation panel selected eight proposals for the next phase of the Innovation Challenge. The challenge aims to accelerate transformational, state-of-the-art ideas, technologies and solutions from companies of all size from all NATO nations.

This year, it focuses on improving distributed radar data processing so that NATO's air operations can tap into the latest technologies available in the defence sector and beyond. The submissions were assessed against criteria including innovation, implementation feasibility and cost-effectiveness. The challenge is in its fifth year.

The top qualifiers and their innovative proposals are:

Name of proposal
Aselsan Elektronik Sanayi A.S.
Performance Improving Architecture For a General Multiple Radar System
Aselsan - SST
A-FACT (Aselsan - Fusion Algorithm Combined Technologies)
Canadian Uavs
Sparrowhawk Radar-Agnostic Software Solutions for Low Cost Airspace awareness
CS Canada Inc.
Detection and Identification of drones
ERA a.s.
Czech Republic
Reticle Ventures Canada Incorporated. (Reticle)
"Making Sense of the Clutter"
RS Technologies SP. Z O.O.

Next steps: what's on offer

The top qualifiers are invited to a virtual innovation pitch session on 4-5 November 2020 as part of NITEC Connect, a virtual two-day event leading up to the next NITEC, NATO's flagship industry conference.

"We were impressed by the caliber of this year's submissions. We look forward to learning more about the proposals at NITEC Connect this year and to discover the best qualified companies," said Dr Peter Lenk, Chief of Service Strategy and Innovation at the NCI Agency.

The Innovation Challenge jury is composed of subject matter experts from NATO and AFWERX, a United States Air Force organization focused on innovation. They will evaluate the live pitches and announce the top finishers, who may subsequently be invited to bid for a contract in this area.

The top finishers will receive:

  • One registration waiver for admission to NITEC in 2021;
  • Participation in an award ceremony with NCI Agency leadership;
  • A mentoring session with NCI Agency leaders in their respective technological field; 
  • The possibility to demonstrate their solution with NATO;
  • Recognition on the NCI Agency communication channels; and 
  • Potential to put their system into operational use through a competitive bid with the NCI Agency.

Click here to register now for NITEC Connect!

Stay tuned for the agenda and practical details.

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