STAGE 1: Solution Description
The Solution Description stage invites all eligible contestants to complete Solution Description submission requirements. Contestants’ solutions will be reviewed by a panel of subject matter experts (SMEs) and judges who will make their selections based on the clarity of the submission, the feasibility of the solution, and how well the submission addresses the Challenge Goals and Objectives and UAS Design Specifications.
- Up to 20 contestants will receive awards including invitations to advance to Stage 2: Design, Prototype Build & Safety Evaluation, and/or cash prize awards.
STAGE 2: Design, Prototype Build & Safety Evaluation
This stage has two milestones for contestants to demonstrate progression in the design of their solutions, development of a working prototype, and compliance with the safety requirements.
STAGE 2.1: Design Review
In this stage, contestants will develop their designs to build their prototype UAS solutions according to the specifications and required safety standards. They will submit design review materials.
- Up to 15 contestants will receive cash prize awards and an invitation to advance to Stage 2.2: Prototype Build & Safety Evaluation. Five additional contestants may win an invitation to continue to Stage 2.2.
STAGE 2.2: Prototype Build & Safety Evaluation
In this stage, contestants will purchase and/or create the hardware necessary to develop or configure a technological mapping method (e.g., SLAM) in order to implement the design approach outlined within their Solution Description and refined in the design. Contestants may take part in a series of design reviews to demonstrate progress towards achieving the teams’ proposed designs, culminating in video evaluation and a 3D map deliverable.
As part of Stage 2.2, Walk-on Contestant entries will be evaluated with an opportunity to advance to Stage 3.
- Up to 12 contestants (which may include Stage 2.1 Winners and/or Walk-on Contestants) will be selected to receive cash prize awards and an invitation to participate in Stage 3: Live Test & Evaluation.
STAGE 3: Live Test & Evaluation
The Live Test & Evaluation Contest consists of the live competition (location will be announced later). Stage 2 winners will travel to the Live Event site to compete in Stage 3. All contestants will be required to complete a UAS safety check prior to demonstrating their prototype UAS capabilities. Contestants who pass the initial compliance review will be evaluated and scored by a panel of judges, and based on those scores, may receive cash prize awards.
- Up to 8 contestants will receive cash prize awards and an invitation to Stage 4: Solution Accelerator.
STAGE 4: Solution Accelerator
The Solution Accelerator Contest is the final stage of this challenge and comprises two milestones for contestants to develop and work towards attainable, public safety-focused goals which are focused on productizing and/or furthering technical research of their Stage 3 UAS solutions.
STAGE 4.1: Plan Development & Public Safety Partnership
In this stage, contestants will develop a Solution Accelerator Plan with goals attainable by the end of Stage 4.2. Contestants will also obtain and develop a public safety partnership to leverage their plan throughout Stage 4.2.
- Up to 8 contestants will receive cash prize awards and an invitation to advance to Stage 4.2: Plan Implementation.
STAGE 4.2: Plan Implementation
Stage 4.2 will involve a series of required activities such as webinars, consultant reviews, final plan presentation, and testing at a NIST laboratory or test site. To complete this stage, contestants will prepare a final presentation showing their plan results and participate in the final event by making their final presentation and participating in UAS testing using NIST test methods. The Stage 4.2 prize requires contestants to attend the final event at the NIST laboratory or test site to receive this prize award.