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AlphaPilot – Lockheed Martin AI Drone Racing Innovation Challenge

AlphaPilot – Lockheed Martin AI Drone Racing Innovation Challenge

AlphaPilot is the first large-scale open innovation challenge of its kind focused on advancing artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomy. Read Overview...
$2,250,000
Overview

 

Calling all coders, gamers, race fans, and drone enthusiasts...

 

Lockheed Martin and The Drone Racing League (DRL) challenge you to participate in AlphaPilot, an open innovation challenge, developing artificial intelligence (AI) for high-speed racing drones.  

 

Enter the AlphaPilot Innovation Challenge today for your chance to master autonomous flight and win more than $2,000,000 in cash prizes.

 

AlphaPilot will challenge teams of up to 10 participants each to design an AI framework, powered by the NVIDIA Jetson platform for AI at the edge, that is capable of flying a drone -- without any human intervention or navigational pre-programming. Autonomous drones will race head-to-head through complex, three-dimensional tracks in DRL’s new Artificial Intelligence Robotic Racing (AIRR) Circuit, starting in 2019.

AlphaPilot aims to unite a diverse community of practicing and emerging AI experts, researchers and students to inspire the next generation of autonomous drone technology. By participating in this challenge, your knowledge and ideas can contribute directly toward the future of autonomous transportation, delivery, disaster relief, and even space exploration!

 

 

Why Drones?

Drone racing is a futuristic sport, and a big draw for millennials and K-12 students with an interest in technology — many of whom will become future STEM professionals, drone pilots and engineers. Lockheed Martin recognizes the important role in helping to develop a workforce with skills to compete in a 21st century high-tech economy. Lockheed Martin and DRL are targeting U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to apply for AlphaPilot; however, the competition is open to drone enthusiasts, coders and technologists of all ages from around the world.

 

Why is Lockheed Martin doing this?

For more than 100 years, Lockheed Martin has been redefining flight — from the fastest speeds, to the edge of space, to unmatched maneuverability and stealth. AI-enabled autonomy promises to fundamentally change the future of flight, and we are actively developing disruptive new AI technologies that will help our customers accomplish their most important missions – from reaching Mars to fighting wildfires.

 

WHAT CAN I DO RIGHT NOW?

  • Click SUBMIT above to apply for AlphaPilot.
  • Read the Challenge Guidelines to learn about competition.
  • Share this challenge on social media using the icons above. Show your friends, your family, or anyone you know who has a passion for discovery.
  • Start a conversation in our Forum to join the discussion, ask questions or connect with other innovators.

ABOUT LOCKHEED MARTIN

Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. This year, the company received three Edison awards for groundbreaking innovations in autonomy, satellite technology and directed energy. For more information, please visit www.lockheedmartin.com/alphapilot.

 

 

 

ABOUT DRONE RACING LEAGUE

DRL is the professional drone racing circuit for elite FPV pilots around the world. A technology, sports and media company, DRL combines world-class media and proprietary technology to create thrilling 3D drone racing content with mass appeal. In 2018 DRL hosted a global series of seven races, the Allianz World Championship, that is airing on ESPN, Sky Sports, ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE, Groupe AB, Disney XD, OSN, and FOX Sports Asia. For more information, please visit www.drl.io

Guidelines
Timeline
Updates 1
Forum 24
Community 1K
Resources
FAQ

The Overview

  • AlphaPilot is a Lockheed Martin open-innovation challenge 
  • It is focused on advancing artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomy 
  • The format is drone racing

The Details

  • Teams will design AI to pilot drones through professional drone racing courses
  • Teams will receive specially designed drones containing the latest GPU devices
  • No offloading of data is permitted – teams must perform 100% edge computation

Exciting Sport

  • The Drone Racing League (DRL) is the sport of the future, combining the thrill of pod-racing from Star Wars with the real-world adrenaline of Formula 1
  • DRL airs on premier sports networks in 75+ countries and has been watched by more than 55 million fans across the globe

Incredible Partners

  • AlphaPilot teams will compete on DRL’s professional Artificial Intelligence Robotic Racing (AIRR) Circuit
  • Teams will have access to the latest in GPU technology from NVIDIA, and mentoring expertise from Lockheed Martin

Exposure

  • AlphaPilot teams will be featured in DRL’s innovative media content, including a digital documentary series 

Compete as a Team

  • Teams of 1-10 people are permitted
  • Teams must be able to send at least 1 representative to compete at each designated AIRR race
  • Teams can be independent or sponsored 
  • Register via the AlphaPilot website through February 28 

Sponsor a Team

  • Legal entities may choose to sponsor one or more teams competing in AlphaPilot
  • Sponsorship can be in-kind, monetary (labor and travel), or both 
  • For additional information, click on the sponsorship tab above

Sponsor the AIRR Circuit

  • DRL has reserved slots for tier-two sponsors
  • Sponsorship includes branding and signage, activations, event tickets, VIP activities to be determined in coordination with DRL 

Host an AlphaPilot Race

  • If you have a unique venue with over 80,000 square feet and are interested in hosting an AlphaPilot race, please contact DRL: venues@drl.io

Open Registration (November 2018 – February 2019)

  • Register online, build your teams and connect with sponsors
  • Receive updates on AlphaPilot challenges, rules, timelines, technology, and more

Virtual Qualifying Round (March 2019)

  • Watch an informational webinar on the AlphaPilot qualification challenge
  • Develop code for the qualifier and submit it to a specified location on or before the given deadline 
  • The qualification challenge will close and AlphaPilot will announce the top scoring teams

Workshop (June 2019 – July 2019)

  • The top teams will be issued a simulation kit to develop and train their code for AIRR racing
  • The top teams will be paired with a Lockheed Martin mentor to assist in their code development ▪ A workshop will be held to 
  • introduce teams to AIRR and engage with leading AI experts

Race in the 2019 AIRR Season (August 2019 – December 2019)

  • The top teams will participate in a series of DRL AIRR race events
  • A grand prize will be awarded to the team with the best cumulative score (DRL scoring system)
  • An additional $250,000 prize will be awarded to the winner if they can outfly a professional DRL pilot
  • By submitting entry code in order to participate in the Challenge, Participants do not transfer ownership of the code to Lockheed Martin or The Drone Racing League.
  • During or after the Challenge, Lockheed Martin or the Drone Racing League may seek to negotiate licenses with participants for the entry code or code developed during the Challenge by participants.
  • In the course of collaborating with participants, Lockheed Martin or the Drone Racing League may gain certain general knowledge, skills, know-how, methodologies, procedures, and techniques from participants that may be useful in Lockheed Martin’s or the Drone Racing League’s operations, which Lockheed Martin and the Drone Racing League are free to use.
  • AlphaPilot is a Lockheed Martin "Innovation Challenge”
  • AIRR is DRL’s new global autonomous drone-racing circuit
  • In 2019 and 2020 selected teams from the Lockheed Martin AlphaPilot Innovation Challenge will compete in the AIRR Circuit. 
  • The challenge will require 100% edge computing – no offboarding of data
  • Contestants cannot modify any of the drone hardware or payloads
  • Preparation for races (finalists only) will be done via a high-fidelity AI/ML simulator and development kit
  • The 2019 drone will utilize technology from the NVIDIA Jetson line
  • Teams may add, remove, or substitute official team members so long as the change is reported (via the team’s AlphaPilot profile or through direct communication with AlphaPilot administrators if in the finalist phase) and in compliance with AlphaPilot’s terms and conditions for participation 
  • Yes, and we recommend keeping it short (15 characters or less), easy to understand and memorable to maximize fan engagement
  • Team names cannot contain expletives or language that’s not suitable for public use
  • Each team's name must be unique; in the event that two teams hold the same name, the team registered first will have the right to use that name
  • Lockheed Martin and DRL reserve the right to ask teams to change their name at any given time
  • Yes, employees from all companies, besides Lockheed Martin and its subsidiaries, are welcome to compete
  • AlphaPilot is about advancing the state of autonomous technology and being done in the spirit of communal progress 
  • Each team will have a designated Team Captain who will be the sole recipient of award money
  • Lockheed Martin and DRL are not responsible for distribution of award money amongst the team 
  • All teams are encouraged to develop their own legal arrangements in advance of the competition 
  • Teams may have between 1-10 members, but only a subset will be permitted to attend each race (based on venue capacities)
  • Teams are encouraged to have enough members such that at least 1 person can attend each event
  • Teams that represent a legal entity or university may pursue a direct sponsorship from those organizations
  • Teams are encouraged to promote their activity online and may crowdsource a sponsorship within user communities
  • For additional information, click on the Sponsors tab above
  • Please see section 3a of the Terms and Conditions for complete details on eligibility requirements 
  • The contest is open to applicants who are at least the age of majority in their country of residence or at least 18 years of age, whichever is older as of the start of the challenge.
  • Individuals who are a citizen of a country listed under 3a(ii) are not eligible to compete, even if they reside in or are a citizen of another country due to heightened U.S. and other country export control regulatory compliance risks or other restrictions.
  • Individuals can enter on behalf of Entities, but the Entities must comply with the restrictions set for in section 3a(iii).
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