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Final Challenge Video

Watch the final challenge video that captures the tremendous work of the teams who competed in this years First Responder UAS Endurance Challenge. Amazing innovations were discovered all the while making pivots and moving past road blocks during a world wide pandemic. Wonderful job to all the teams and partners!

To view the stage 4 winners and best in class please visit the winners page.

About The Challenge

Could your Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) win a competition for the “Last Drone Standing”?

If you look around, there are plenty of drone challenges sponsored by industry, academia, non-profits, and government agencies. The First Responder UAS Endurance Challenge, however, will be the one most worthy of your time.

Why? Because the First Responder UAS Endurance Challenge is a competition that is specifically designed to crowd-source as many inventive drone designs as possible for first responders. What does this mean for you? It means the Challenge presents a unique opportunity to use your ingenuity and hardware build expertise to design a drone prototype that will fly for the longest time possible while carrying a 10-pound payload. It means the competition awards up to $588K in prizes that not only include the top three best designs that meet program requirements, but also include a variety of ‘best-in-class’ awards for specific drone capabilities. When you accept our invitation to join this Challenge, you and your team will be directly helping to advance UAS technology focused on supporting the needs of the public safety community and its stakeholders.

In this Challenge, implemented by Capital Consulting Corporation and Arizona State University Research Enterprise (ASURE) under contract with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Public Safety Communication Research (PSCR) Division, you are asked to create and build a powerful drone intended to support critical, life-saving missions. Will you push the innovation envelope and accept our invitation to be the “Last Drone Standing?”

America’s First Responders need your support!

First Responder UAS Endurance Challenge

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Visit this page regularly for updated information. Sign up now for updates, including notification of the official Challenge launch notice, by clicking "Get in touch."

First Responder UAS Endurance Challenge



Latest Updates

6/23/21 - Stage 4 results announced.

3/29/21 - Stage 3 results announced.

1/15/21 - Stage 3 remediation deadline extended to 3/1/21

12/9/20 - Stage 3 submission deadline extended to December 28.

11/6/20 - Congratulations to the Contestants Joining the Stage 2 CDR Winners Circle!!

10/28/20 - Stage 3 Webinar recording and presentation

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Key Details


To support the first responder community and help save lives.

Imagine a scenario where a citizen is lost in the desert. The existing Public Safety Broadband Network (PSBN) only covers 5% of the search area because of the local topography. A team of first responders deployed to the incident area need to rely on your Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) to carry wireless communications equipment that can be deployed quickly and support emergency response teams in the area.


Accept this Challenge to expand current drone capabilities (i.e. vertical takeoff and landing, accuracy, stability, safety), payload management, and flight endurance to support search-and-rescue operations and other public safety missions of similar need.


Invited Contestants - Mark your calendars for our March 1, 2021 Stage 3: Video Test & Safety Evaluation Contest remediation deadline and submit your updated entries. Check out "Key Details" for submission requirements and information on what you can do right now to be ready. Selected contestants will receive prize awards and invitations to participate in the final stage.

The final stage will be a Live Test & Evaluation Contest to demonstrate your UAS capability and compete for prizes and recognition. Go to for complete Challenge Rules, evaluation criteria, and more details.


Invited Contestants are encouraged to take the following steps:

  1. UpdateYour Submission Material – Update your Stage 3 workbook (technical performance measures, bill of materials), summary slide, test flight video, and optional calculation/test results document and incorporate any feedback.
  2. Review step-by-step instructions for a successful contest entry.



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Contact Info

Josh Shapiro
Best In Crowd
Capital Consulting Corp
+1 (301) 468-6001

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