NCI Agency’s Defence Innovation Challenge

2019 WINNERS

Startups, SMEs and Academia: Showing their most innovative ideas


The evaluation panel selected the best proposal out of the top ten: Dual-use of AIS-data; Combining historical and live AIS track with Social Network Analysis for increased Maritime Network Awareness, by US Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) and Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI). The winning team will be awarded a monetary prize of 10,000 EUR, and given the ambitious task of running a formal pilot with the NCI Agency to demonstrate its solution.


The NCI Agency is pleased to announce the winners of the fourth annual Defence Innovation Challenge, aimed at accelerating transformational, state-of-the-art technology solutions from start-ups, small businesses and academia in support of NATO C4ISR and cyber capabilities.

The top 10 innovators and their technologies are:

  • US Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) and Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI) (Norway): Dual-use of AIS-data; Combining historical and live AIS track with Social Network Analysis for increased Maritime Network Awareness
  • Kepler Communications (Canada): PolarConnect
  • 2G Robotics Inc. (Canada): Innovative Optical Sensor Payload for Autonomous Underwater Vehicles: A Force Multiplier for Defensive Mine Countermeasures
  • MarineTraffic (Greece): MarineTraffic MSA and Anomaly Detection Tool
  • Vake (Norway): Vake – detect and classify dark ships in satellite images
  • Studiomapp (Italy): Ship detection and monitor port activities using Artificial Intelligence on Very High Resolution Satellite Imagery
  • Troika Solutions (US) and Fieldmade (Norway): Logistics Velocity enabled by in-field manufacturing
  • Nodalpoint Systems (Greece): SatShipAI
  • Oxford Scientifica Ltd (United Kingdom): Rubicon – Advanced Data Signal Compression, Fidelity and Security
  • MMI Agency (United States): Identity Resolution and Threat Analysis (IRTA) Workstation

I was very impressed with the proposals received this year, to our fourth Innovation Challenge.  They were all judged to be of very high quality by our selection panel and demonstrate the potential of the revolutionary product ideas that small business and academia can offer to support NATO’s C4ISR and cyber capabilities.”

Dr Peter Lenk, Chief Service Strategy and Innovation, Service Strategy, NCI Agency




Top finishers will have an opportunity to showcase
to showcase their tech solutions at the NCI Agency annual industry
conference NITEC19:,  NATO and the High North: Technology Ultramarathon.”
This year’s conference is on 20-22 May in Oslo, Norway.




What’s on offer?

A selection board

will choose the top ten finishers that will receive:
  • One registration waiver for admission to NITEC19;
  • Sales pitch presentation of 5 minutes during the plenary sessions of NITEC19;
  • Free showcase space in the Exhibition area (standard space);
  • Participation in the award ceremony with NATO leadership; and
  • Mention in the NITEC19 report.

A monetary prize of 10 000 EUR will be awarded to the best proposal out of the top ten finishers. As a part of winning, they will be given the ambitious task of running a formal pilot with the NCI Agency to demonstrate their solution.

Participants of the conference will also have an opportunity to join B2B meetings, mentoring sessions and bilateral meetings with the NCI Agency managers.



Check out our

Previous winners…

NITEC19

Submission Guidelines

Start-ups, SMEs and academic institutions from all 29 NATO Nations are invited to participate.

Entries must be received by Friday 22 March 2019
The winners will be announced on Monday 8 April 2019

A concise proposal summary should demonstrate the unique aspects of your technology,
its innovative core and the proposed work as it relates to the focus area
while highlighting its relevance to NATO.


Please read carefully our Terms of Reference prior to submission of proposal.

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