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FIRST RESPONDER UAS ENDURANCE CHALLENGE

Congratulations to Stage 1 Winners Circle!!

Accepting new entries starting December for Stage 3 Walk-on Contest

Prepare your UAS prototype NOW!

Frequently Asked Questions

This page will be updated as new FAQs become available.

# Posted Question Type Question

1

4/28/20 Cost

Please consult the Official Challenge FAQ page (https://firstresponderuaschallenge.org/faqs.php#faq20) and specifcally FAQ #20 posted on 3/4/20 which states "Please provide the current market price for the item. If the exact item is no longer available, please provide the current market price for a like item." Furthermore, donated and/or discounted hardware is allowed, but the market value of each component must be estimated and reported as if it were purchased. The list of components will be used in the hardware build sheet to ensure the UAV is compliant with the $30K hardware budget. The $30K hardware budget is in place to ensure that the prototypes created by contestants are similar in cost, that they are affordable to first responders and, in many ways, levels the playing field among contestants. If parts are custom made, the labor costs will not be included but the cost of material will be. In the list of required hardware build documentation, information regarding the materials used, volume and manufacturing process (CNC, 3D print, etc.) will be required to estimate the cost of the hardware in comparison to commercially available hardware.

2

4/28/20 Payload

The center of gravity of the payload may vary by up to 1" in the X, Y (i.e., horizontal), and Z (i.e., vertical) directions. The position of the payload is adjustable in one of the horitonzal directions with the aid of the mounting rails.

3

4/28/20 Payload

Other than the vertical orientation, there are no other payload orientation requirements.

4

4/28/20 FAA, FCC, Regs

Contestants are responsible for obtaining any waivers, airworthiness certificates, pilot licenses, etc. necessary for operating an aircraft that weighs 55 lbs or greater and to abide by all FAA rules and regulations (and/or the rules and regulations of the specific Civil Aviation Authorities within the various countries/jurisdictions in whcih they will be operating) pertainning to the operation of such an aircraft. Contestants are cautioned that operating an aircraft that weighs 55 lbs or more may not be possible under FAA Part 107 rules and the contestants are encouraged to contact the proper FAA authorities in order to determine the requirements pertaining to their particular aircraft and/or flights. Contestants will be required to present adequate proof of compliance with the relevant rules and regulations for any aircraft that weighs 55 lbs or greater.

5

4/28/20 Payload

There are no assumed capabilities for the broadband communications device for which the 10-lb payload is a surrogate for the purposes of this challenge.

6

4/28/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Any drones still in the air after 4 hours of the the Last Drone Standing (Criterion 5) event will be required to land. In Criterion 5, points will be awarded for maintaining the UAV in a location within a defined three-dimensional airspace.

7

4/28/20 Airframe

Multiple aircraft are allowed as part of a "system" as long as the system meets all of the design requirements in Table B of the official challenge rules (https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf). For a system with multiple aircraft additional 10-lb payloads will be provided. In addition, a system with multiple aircraft must be able to maintain continuous "communications coverage" at all times, meaning the newly arrived drone will have to be "on-station" before the other drone can navigate back to the designated landing location.

8

4/28/20 All Others

In reference to the Official Rules (https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf), pages 13 and 14, the term "form fields" can be ignored. The Contestant Portal will allow you to submit all of the required documents at the same time.

9

4/28/20 All Others

Yes, you may add graphics and tables, and the original content (not captions) will count against word count.

10

4/28/20 All Others

Yes, please identify a single point of contact for your team and your team name.

11

4/28/20 All Others

Please provide a name or names of the individuals who are fulfilling these roles.

1

4/21/20 All Others

All submissions to this prize competition are deemed non-proprietary however, NIST does not intend to share any of the participants' information with other teams or to release that information to the public. Please read the "Warranties" in the Official Challenge Rules.

2

4/21/20 Payload

The gimbal and camera must be carried simultaneously with the 10 lb payload, but NIST will not be providing the gimbal or the camera and they do not need to be mounted along side the payload.

3

4/21/20 UAS Equipment

Contestants may implement any gimbal/camera combination that meets the design specification's minimum requirements.

4

4/21/20 Payload

For this challenge, it is assumed that the LTE equipment's antenna is attached to the payload and that the payload is held approximately vertical (relative to gravity) with the aluminum plate at the top. This orientation must be maintained during all flights, except during takeoff and landing.

5

4/21/20 Payload

The payload may be enclosed by the vehicle structure provided the payload (including the mount) can be removed and reinstalled or replaced easily. The enclosure may not interfere with RF signals, including those produced by any equipment we may place on the payload for the Live Event.

6

4/21/20 Payload

No, there are no shock or G requirements. Please be aware that the UAS must be operated safely under control at all phases of flight.

7

4/21/20 Payload

No, there is no specific RF noise requirements for the payload.

8

4/21/20 Payload

No, there are no specific thermal requirements for the payload.

9

4/21/20 All Others

No, there are no specific aero load limits on the payload.

10

4/21/20 All Others

The payload may be enclosed by the vehicle structure provided the payload (including the mount) can be removed and reinstalled or replaced easily. The enclosure may not interfere with RF signals, including those produced by any equipment we may place on the payload for the Live Event.

1

4/10/20 Cost

In a NIST survey of first responders in which they were asked how much they would be willing to pay for a drone that could provide broadband communications coverage, 93% said that they would pay $30K or less. The full survey is pending NIST publication.

2

4/10/20 Cost

The cost estimate is calculated and submitted by the Contestant. In other words, the Contestant's proposed approach to meet the Challenge requirements may be one of the major cost factors. Some may choose to use one UAS and others may chose to use several (e.g., a fleet). 

3

4/10/20 Updated FAA, FCC, Regs

Update on 4/20: No, this prize challenge is run under the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act and as such, is not subject to Federal Acquisition Regulations as a procurement or pursuant to 2 C.F.R. as federal financial assistance. NIST also does not intend to and will not own any of the UAS at the end of the Challenge.

4

4/10/20 FAA, FCC, Regs

The challenge requirements (and federal law) require compliance with FAA laws and regulations.  The implementation of ASTM standards are not a requirement (although they are good practice) unless specifically required by the FAA.

5

4/10/20 FAA, FCC, Regs

The team must have an a FAA Certified Remote Pilot (under Part 107) fly the drone for all flights. This includes the final demonstration and any test flights within the U.S. National Airspace. The team does not have to have a Part 107 certified pilot during the initial proposal phase, but must have a pilot for all flights within the U.S. National Airspace. Hiring a certified pilot is acceptable.

6

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

VTOL is taking off and landing vertically. Loiter is the ability to hold position over a particular space. The requirements have been drafted to allow for the maximum types of airframes to participate as possible. It is envisioned that the first responders will not have a lot of space from which to launch and recover the drone. Therefore, the drone must be able to takeoff and land vertically within an imaginary vertical cylinder of some diameter and height. The dimensions of this virtual cylinder will be defined at a later date, but typical vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) capabilities of multi-rotor/helicopter type UAS as well as forward flying (or fixed-wing) UAS that can takeoff and land vertically will be taken into consideration.

7

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

No, flight time will take into account the total continuous time that the drone is in the air and we may score the time spent loitering within the defined area differently.

8

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

Yes, loiter radius and endurance are closely tied together. It is not sufficient for the drone to demonstrate a tight loiter radius for a short period and then switch to a much larger loiter radius. The dimensions of the loiter radius will influence the drone's final score.

9

4/10/20 Updated Flight Characteristics

Update on 4/20: The "small area" and "100-foot area" specified in Stage 3 of the challenge are only necessary during the production of the 5-minute video that contestants are required to submit. The small area is necessary so that reviewers of the videos can get a clear line-of-sight to the drone at all times.

10

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

You will be required to operate under the natural weather conditions during the Stage 4 Live Competition (e.g., some wind or light rain).  While the Challenge is not requiring or evaluating your UAS under adverse weather conditions, First Responders prefer a UAS that is durable under adverse conditions. 

11

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

No. While cross wind conditions will not be evaluated or simulated during the challenge, the drone must be able to handle cross winds that may arise during Stage 4 of the challenge at takeoff and landing, and during flight.

12

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

1. The "small defined airspace" in which the drone must loiter will be decided at a later date. However, the size of that airspace will take into account typical capabilities of multi-rotor/helicopter type UAS as well as forward flying (or fixed-wing) UAS that can takeoff and land vertically.

2. A tethered drone is not suitable for the mission represented by this challenge for 2 reasons: a) it is envisioned that the incident area in which the first responders will be operating on the ground is not accessible by roads so that a typical vehicle would not be able to reach it (i.e., the drone will have to be deployed from a remote location and then flown over the incident area); and b) it is also envisioned that the drone, although stationary for some time over an area, may need to move about periodically in order to provide continuous communication links to the first responders who may be advancing to a new location. This is not as easy to do if a tether is involved, but having the drone move to those locations while being able to stay in a small defined space at those new locations for a prolonged period is the innovation we are looking for. Please see the Challenge Goals and Objectives section, specifically "The drone may be required to move between different locations in order to maintain communications coverage."

13

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

It is envisioned that the first responders will not have a lot of space from which to launch and recover the drone. Therefore, the drone must be able to takeoff and land vertically within an imaginary vertical cylinder of some diameter and height. The dimensions of this virtual cylinder will be defined at a later date, but typical vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) capabilities of multi-rotor/helicopter type UAS as well as forward flying (or fixed-wing) UAS that can takeoff and land vertically will be taken into consideration.

14

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

The majority of the drone's endurance during Stage 4 of the challenge should be spent in loiter mode. Loitering within specified parameters demonstrates positive control over the aircraft and is a necessary mode of operation. The official rules [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf] for the Last Drone Standing Flight Evaluations (page 31) state: "The drone must maintain a location within the defined three-dimensional airspace to be awarded points. Contestants’ drones must remain within the three-dimensional airspace for as long as possible. Once the drone has achieved its maximum Endurance, it must safely land at the assigned landing location to complete the event and be awarded points." Therefore, loiter time may be considered akin to endurance.

15

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

The majority of the drone's endurance during Stage 4 of the challenge should be spent in loiter mode. Loitering within specified parameters demonstrates positive control over the aircraft and is a necessary mode of operation. The official rules [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf] for the Last Drone Standing Flight Evaluations (page 31) state: "The drone must maintain a location within the defined three-dimensional airspace to be awarded points. Contestants’ drones must remain within the three-dimensional airspace for as long as possible. Once the drone has achieved its maximum Endurance, it must safely land at the assigned landing location to complete the event and be awarded points." Therefore, loiter time may be considered akin to endurance.

16

4/10/20 Flight Characteristics

There is not a maximum sink-speed for landing.  However, the landing speed should reflect a safe and controlled flight operation. 

17

4/10/20 Fuel/Power

All types of power sources are allowed as long as they meet FAA requirements and are implemented safely.

18

4/10/20 Fuel/Power

There are not requirements for dedicated fuel reserves.

19

4/10/20 Fuel/Power

Yes, however, the ten-pound payload simulates a network communications device but is not an actual device.

20

4/10/20 Fuel/Power

There are no restrictions to fuel type as long as the fuel can be safely utilized (by the team, during storage, and the drone) during the challenge.

21

4/10/20 Fuel/Power

There are not requirements for dedicated fuel reserves.

22

4/10/20 Payload

The Appendix (Sketch Up Files) can be downloaded from https://firstresponderuaschallenge.org/Appendix-Sketch-Up-Files.pdf

23

4/10/20 Payload

No, but you must still comply with all FCC regulations and be cognizant not to interfere with other communications during the Stage 4 live event.

24

4/10/20 Updated Payload

Update on 4/20: The payload may be enclosed by the vehicle structure provided the payload including the mount can be removed and reinstalled or replaced easily. The enclosure may not interfere with RF signals, including those produced by any equipment we may place on the payload for the Live Event.

25

4/10/20 Payload

The payload design is specified in the Appendix that can be accessed at https://firstresponderuaschallenge.org/Appendix-Sketch-Up-Files.pdf The 10 lb payload consists of the 2 rails, the square plate, the plastic enclosure with everything in it, all of the fasteners/straps required to keep the payload together, and any other instruments that the challenge team may decide to include into or onto the payload. The mechanism by which the payload is attached to the drone is left up to the teams.

26

4/10/20 Payload

The payload mounting plate may not be modified in any way from the official design since it is considered part of the 10 lb payload. The plate is made of a 0.25 inch thick 6061 aluminum alloy and is sufficient to carry the required payload under normal UA flight conditions.

27

4/10/20 Payload

The ten-pound payload consists of the 2 rails, the square plate, the plastic enclosure with everything in it, all of the fasteners/straps required to keep the payload together, and any other instruments that the challenge team may decide to include into or onto the payload. The fasteners used to connect the rails to the aircraft are not included as part of the weight.

28

4/10/20 Payload

The payload must be oriented vertically with the plate on the top and the plastic enclosure at the bottom.

29

4/10/20 Updated Payload

Update on 4/20: The payload may be enclosed by the vehicle structure provided the payload including the mount can be removed and reinstalled or replaced easily. The enclosure may not interfere with RF signals, including those produced by any equipment we may place on the payload for the Live Event.

30

4/10/20 Updated Payload

Update on 4/20: The payload may be enclosed by the vehicle structure provided the payload including the mount can be removed and reinstalled or replaced easily. The enclosure may not interfere with RF signals, including those produced by any equipment we may place on the payload for the Live Event.

31

4/10/20 Payload

The rail design cannot be modified since they are part of the weight of the payload.

32

4/10/20 Payload

All teams will get identical payloads in terms of shape, dimension, and weight (to within ± 0.25 lbs).

33

4/10/20 Updated Payload

Update on 4/20: The payload may be enclosed by the vehicle structure provided the payload including the mount can be removed and reinstalled or replaced easily. The enclosure may not interfere with RF signals, including those produced by any equipment we may place on the payload for the Live Event.

34

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

There are no restrictions on the entry of “buoyant vehicles.” Buoyant vehicles would still need to meet all of the requirements in Challenge Rules.

35

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Per the Eligibility Requirements in the Official Challenge Rules, " At the time of entry, the Official Representative (individual or team lead, in the case of a group project) must be age 18 or older and a U.S. citizen or permanent resident of the United States or its territories. In the case of a private entity, the business shall be incorporated in and maintain a place of business in the United States or its territories."

36

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

The requirements and objectives will be evaluated as outlined in the Rules document [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf]. As described The requirements represent mandatory capabilities of the drone and minimum acceptable values for the specific requirement.  We are asking for capabilities beyond that and will be assessing how well you implement your vision. Please check firstresponderuaschallenge.org for updates to the FAQs and new information.

37

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

No, but teams should be aware that travel funds have only been allocated for up to four members (not to exceed $6,000 per group) to attend the live test demonstration.

38

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

There will be some required flight demonstrations during the challenge in Stage 4. There is no minimum distance, but think of the drone that you are designing as having to meet the capabilities of similar drones on the market that may not have the endurance that you are designing. In other words, the drone needs to be useful and not just hover in place. One of the reasons why we will not accept tethered solutions is because the drone will need to fly to the incident site from the nearest paved or dirt road and then it may also need to move as the first responders on the ground move to new locations.

39

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

You may use manufacturers outside of the US. However, the Challenge requires that at least one team member be a US citizen or permanent resident. 

40

4/10/20 Updated Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Update on 4/20: The requirements and objectives will be evaluated as outlined in the Rules document [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf], including Stage 4 Evaluation Criteria and Judging. Please check firstresponderuaschallenge.org for any updates to the FAQs and new information.

41

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

While there are no wind velocity requirements under which the drone must operate, the drone is expected to be able to operate in, and be evaluated under (during the Stage 4 live event), wind conditions similar to what equivalent commercial drones typically operate under.

42

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

While there are no requirements for having custom software/hardware, the teams are encouraged to innovate as much as possible, and this will likely require some level of customization. Furthermore, since judges have certain discretions in awarding points, and since the Stage 4 Live Test & Evaluation Contest includes several Best-in-Class awards as well as a First Responder’s Choice Award, teams should expect to be as innovative as possible in their approaches.

43

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Teams may only submit one concept. Teams may update their submission in the Contestant Portal up until the deadline, and be evaluated on their final submission.

44

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Depending on the particular detect and avoid capabilities, that determination would likely be at the discretion of the judges.

45

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Since operating beyond a 2-mile line-of-sight can technically be accomplished without any autonomy, such operation in and of itself would not be considered an autonomous operation. Additionally, the challenge neither requires nor recommends operating a drone at such distances during any of the stages, and participants are cautioned to always abide by FAA rules and regulations.  

46

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

You are free to adapt existing commercial products into your designs.  Per the Official Challenge Rules, "Drones must not be a completely unaltered commercial, off-the-shelf UAS."

47

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

NIST will not keep any of the prototypes. Contestant UAS prototypes are considered intellectual property (see Submission Rights in the Official Challenge Rules

48

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

The requirements and objectives will be evaluated as outlined in the Rules document [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf]. Specifically, Table B - Drone Design Specification should provide more information on the objectives of each of the metrics of the challenge. Please check firstresponderuaschallenge.org for updates to the FAQs and new information.

49

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

The requirements and objectives will be evaluated as outlined in the Rules document [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf]. Specifically, Table B - Drone Design Specification should provide more information on the objectives of each of the metrics of the challenge. Please check firstresponderuaschallenge.org for updates to the FAQs and new information.

50

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

No, the challenge is open to all eligible contestants meeting the criteria outlined in the challenge rules [https://www.challenge.gov/assets/document-library/Official%20Challenge%20Rules%20-%20PSCR%20First%20Responder%20UAS%20Endurance%20Challenge%20April2020.pdf] under Eligibility Requirements.

51

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

The team must have at least one eligible contestant per the rules and terms of the challenge.  We encourage you to go to our Facebook page (Facebook.com/uasendurance) and recruit team members.

52

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Letters of support are intended to be testimonials from external entities endorsing the ability of team members to make a viable contribution to the First Responder UAS Endurance Challenge.

53

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Teams will attend all official events leading up to the live demonstration virtually, and all team members are invited and encouraged to take part. Teams selected to take part in the Live Demonstration will receive travel funds (not to exceed $6,000) to enable four members of the team to support the live demonstration event. Additional members of the team are allowed to attend, but the program will only provide travel funds for four members of the team to attend.

54

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Please refer to pages 39 and 40 of the official Challenge rules: All cash prizes awarded to Participants by the Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology are subject to tax liabilities, and no withholding will be assessed on behalf of the Participant claiming a cash prize.

55

4/10/20 Rules, Scoring, Eligibility

Please refer to the Rules document, which states that the System Volume is "the amount of space that the system occupies in a stored configuration" and is equal to or less than 3 ft x 4 ft x 6 ft feet in dimension. As long as the UAS (which includes the aircraft as well as all equipment needed to make it operational) fits within the specified volume, then the system would be considered compliant. The system volume requirement is meant to allow the system to be transported in small public safety vehicles such as trucks or SUVs. Please keep in mind that more points might be awarded to systems that fit within smaller volumes and that have a faster setup times - setup time is defined in the rules as "[b]eginning from a stored configuration in the back of a vehicle, the drone shall be capable of being setup to be in an operational state, ready to fly in 20 minutes or less." This is a requirement and not an option.

56

4/10/20 UAS Equipment

At a minimum, the gimbal must be able to maintain a steady camera image under normal flight conditions. In addition, the gimbal must be able to tilt the camera from horizontal to pointing straight down. Apart from being a useful tool for first responders, images and video captured using the drone's camera will also be used to judge the flight characteristics of the drone throughout the challenge.

57

4/10/20 UAS Equipment

RTK GPS is required in order accurately maintain and optimize the position of the payload in the air. Data from the RTK GPS logs may also be used for evaluating the drone's flight performance throughout the challenge.

58

4/10/20 UAS Equipment

The Flight Termination System or “kill switch” is a safety feature that stops all motors instantly.  This is a required feature for the Challenge.  A Flight Termination System is distinctly different from a “land switch” that when triggered directs the drone to immediately land at the position where the mode was triggered.  Both are good features to have, however only the Flight Termination System is required.

59

4/10/20 All Others

This will be provided at a later date.

60

4/10/20 All Others

Yes, the Contestant Portal (i.e., BestInCrowd) has a discussion forum.  You will need to join the challenge on the Portal to submit questions.  You can also email questions using the contact information on the website

61

4/10/20 All Others

Future challenges may be held, but this has not been decided yet. Applicants are encouraged to regularly check the NIST PSCR website <https://www.nist.gov/ctl/pscr/open-innovation-prize-challenges>, Challenge.gov <https://www.challenge.gov/> and/or contact PSCR staff regarding future opportunities.

62

4/10/20 All Others

Judges are selected by the Director of NIST. The qualified panel of expert(s) will consist of Department of Commerce (DOC), NIST and non-DOC experts based on their UAS, public safety, and other relevant subject matter expert knowledge.

63

4/10/20 All Others

The new challenge is different in 2 primary ways: 1) forward flying (or fixed wing) aircraft are allowed, and 2) endurance is defined as the maximum length of time that a drone at All Up Weight can safely spend in continuous flight.

64

4/10/20 All Others

While there is not a specific evaluation regarding noise, this consideration may be a factor in terms of "ease of use" considerations.

1

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. Contestants may utilize additional funding to support design, development, and testing. However, the unit cost of the system flying in Stage 4 must not exceed $30,000. The complete list of components, their costs, and sources, as well as a list of custom-made parts, their fabrication source, material, and material volume must be provided and verified in Stage 2. Interchangeable and spare parts that are an exact duplicate of primary parts within the drone, will not count as part of the $30,000 hardware budget (unless these are provided as part of the “system” that a first responder would buy). During the Stage 4 competition, drone components may be damaged or malfunction. It is in the contestant’s best interest to ensure that they have the spare parts required for safe flight and continued operation.

2

3/4/20 All Others

No, that is not necessary. However, we do encourage you to sign up on the Challenge website (https://firstresponderuaschallenge.org) to receive updates about the Challenge.

3

3/4/20 All Others

No. Each team or Contestant may submit one proposal.

4

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. Updates to proposals can be submitted until the proposal deadline, only the latest version will be evaluated.

5

3/4/20 All Others

These terms refer to the Contestant Portal, where you will submit the Concept Paper during Stage 1. Contestants may upload one or multiple documents which contain all the required evaluation criteria.

6

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. The goal is to develop an innovative solution for first responder teams, which can include work you developed prior to this competition. However, the design must adhere to the Drone Design Specifications, outlined in Table B of the Official Rules.

7

3/4/20 All Others

Contestants were selected based on their concepts. We recommend that each team pursue their Concept solution as entered. Teams can make refinements however, major shifts in the concept approach are strongly discouraged.

8

3/4/20 All Others

Liability insurance is required from Stage 2 through the end of the Challenge to ensure that all contestants are covered in the event of an accident during test flights and the final live event. Proof of a team's drone liability insurance is required to be eligible to receive prizes in Stage 1 and subsequent Stages.

9

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. A team can implement multiple air vehicles as part of their design. However, the multiple air vehicles must adhere to the Drone Design Specifications, outlined in Table B of the Official Rules.

10

3/4/20 All Others

No. System designs can utilize commercially-available products in their design.

11

3/4/20 All Others

No. An unaltered commercial off-the-shelf drone will not be accepted as a solution.

12

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. The Table B Drone Design Specification requirements specify the minimum accepted capabilities a drone (and the system) must have in order to be an acceptable submission in the contest.

13

3/4/20 All Others

No. Any airframe type can be utilized, however Contestants must show that the airframe meets the Drone Design Specification.

14

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. However, the “tanker” or other drones would be considered part of the system and count towards the total cost, set up time, and required pilots.

15

3/4/20 All Others

No. Endurance is estimated with the system at AUW which includes the weight of the payload.

16

3/4/20 All Others

There is no limit to the number of team members. However, the travel prize award for Stage 3 winners is limited to four team members.

17

3/4/20 All Others

NIST distributes prize money as a lump sum payment to the official team representative. NIST is not involved in any further distribution of prize money. The official team representative must be age 18 or older and a U.S. citizen or permanent resident of the United States or its territories. .

18

3/4/20 All Others

Please be aware that all cash prizes awarded to Participants by NIST are subject to tax liabilities, and no withholding will be assessed by NIST on behalf of the Participant claiming a cash prize.

19

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. All parts and materials in the system, regardless of when it was made or purchased, need to be included in the Bill Of Materials (BOM).

20

3/4/20 All Others

Please provide the current market price for the item. If the exact item is no longer available, please provide the current market price for a like item.

21

3/4/20 All Others

Yes. UAS requirements that have a Challenge Objective indicating that greater levels of performance are considered better, like Endurance, will be awarded additional points for better performance. See Table B: Drone Design Specification requirements

22

3/4/20 All Others

Donated hardware is allowed, but estimated market value of each component must be known and reported as if it were purchased. The list of components will be used in the hardware build sheet to ensure the UAS is compliant with the $30,000 budget. There are no restrictions to listing your contributors.

23

3/4/20 All Others

No. However, you can compete in Stage 3 as a Walk-on contestant.

24

3/4/20 All Others

Acceptable video formats are: avi, mpg, mov, and mp4.

25

3/4/20 All Others

You are free to design your UAS as you like. However, the NIST logo cannot be included.

26

3/4/20 All Others

To provide an even playing field, information regarding the location of the live site will not be shared until Stage 3. However, it will be at an outdoor location.

27

3/4/20 All Others

Challenge administrative staff members and live contest site personnel will share site information with Stage 3 winners. There is a major metropolitan area within an hour drive from the live contest site.

28

3/4/20 All Others

Spectators will be limited to NIST staff, judges, Challenge contestant staff and media. All spectators will need to register in advance.

29

3/4/20 All Others

BVLOS is not allowed. All teams will be required to have a direct line of sight to their UAS at all times during all flights.

30

3/4/20 All Others

Yes, the entire system, including payload, must fit within the volume limitations.

31

3/4/20 All Others

The rules state that the system shall not have any Tethers and must be free flying.

32

3/4/20 All Others

The use of WiFi for communications between components on the UAS itself is allowed, but is not advised because it may be susceptible to interference from other RF sources. A wired approach for this type of communication may be more prudent. The use of WiFi for any communications between the UAS and the ground station or the flight termination system is not allowed.

33

3/4/20 All Others

Once distributed, prize money is the property of the winner. However, we strongly encourage teams to continue participating in the Challenge as an opportunity to get mentoring and improve your prototype.

34

3/4/20 All Others

Absolutely. We encourage you to use this opportunity to publicly share your participation and any stage wins in the UAS Challenge. However, when publicizing your participation you may not use NIST’s logo or official seal, and you may not claim NIST endorsement of your technology or organization.

35

3/4/20 All Others

Each entrant retains title and full ownership in and to their submission. Entrants expressly reserve all intellectual property rights not expressly granted under the Challenge agreement. By participating in the Challenge, each entrant hereby irrevocably grants to NIST a limited, non-exclusive, royalty-free, worldwide license and right to reproduce, publicly perform, publicly display, and use the submission to the extent necessary to administer the Challenge, and to publicly perform and publicly display the submission, including, without limitation, for advertising and promotional purposes relating to the Challenge.

36

3/4/20 All Others

That depends. Federal grantees may not use Federal funds to develop COMPETES Act Challenge applications unless consistent with the purpose of their grant award. Federal contractors may not use Federal funds from a contract to develop COMPETES Act Challenge applications or to fund efforts in support of a COMPETES Act Challenge submission.

37

3/4/20 All Others

The challenge is open to individuals who are 18 years of age and older. Please see Page 35 of the Official Rules of the Challenge for complete eligibility requirements.

If you have additional questions, please send them to jshapiro@capconcorp.com.