ASELSAN has won the 5th Innovation Challenge (NITEC Connect), organized this year by The NATO Communications and Information (NCI) Agency.
This year's challenge focused on improving distributed radar data processing so that NATO's air operations can tap into the latest technologies available in the defence sector and beyond.
More than 1,100 people registered for the event that was held between 4-5 November 2020., representing 600 companies and organizations. More than half of the companies and organizations represented are attending a NITEC event for the first time.
Three winners were announced, after the top qualifying companies pitched their solutions at the NITEC Connect industry event that was carried out virtually.
The winners were:
- ASELSAN from Turkey
- ERA a.s. from Czech Republic
- Reticle Ventures Canada Incorporated, in partnership with Lemay.ai from Canada.
Aselsan made the following statement on its twitter account in regards to the matter:
"ASELSAN has won NCI Agency’s 5th Innovation Challenge with both of its proposals on improving air surveillance radar performance and also get a chance to put these systems into operational use for NATO’s collective security."
The winners will receive a contract to take part in a pilot with the Agency. Each contract will be tailored to the winner's proposal.
The challenge aims to accelerate transformational, state-of-the-art ideas, technologies and solutions from companies of all size from all NATO Nations. This is a fundamental element of the Alliance's air defence capability, the Air Command and Control System, which industry is delivering to NATO.
"At the NCI Agency we know we don't innovate alone. Industry has always been a major partner in our efforts. I am excited to see what other industry innovators can bring to this area, particularly in applying machine learning techniques to the wealth of data we have from these systems," said Major General Göksel Sevindik, NCI Agency Chief of Staff, in his opening remarks.
"We are committed to engaging with NATO's tech sector during this pandemic," said NCI Agency General Manager Kevin J Scheid.
Next, the NCI Agency will work with the winners to take their innovation to the next level and test it in NATO scenarios. The companies will work closely with NCI Agency experts in this field, refining their proposal and looking into the challenges of putting the innovative ideas into practice in NATO.