UAV Challenge wins AAUS Leadership Award

March 31st, 2020

The UAV Challenge and organisers CSIRO’s Data61 Robotics and Autonomous Systems Group and QUT have been awarded the Australian Association for Unmanned Systems (AAUS) 2020 Leadership Award.

The Leadership Award recognises individuals or organisations that lead the way with advocacy work that strives to improve the commercial and/or technological viability of the unmanned systems industry.

The UAV Challenge was first held in 2007 and has run continuously to the current round.  Thirteen High School events have been conducted, along eight Open events. The Open event was initially the Outback Rescue Challenge (2007 – 2014) with Canberra UAV first to complete the full challenge. The Medical Express Challenge followed, and Medical Rescue Challenge commenced in 2019 (to be flown in 2020).

The event has been made possible with the Queensland Government and Boeing being continuously involved as sponsors since inception. Insitu Pacific, Lockheed, Northrop Grumman, DST Group, and Mathworks have also been long term sponsors. The Australian Defence Force, CASA, Raytheon, regional councils, and other groups have provided support and judges over the years.

The UAV Challenge is known on a global scale and has had numerous international teams participate in both the Open and High School Challenges. It has been used as a model for a number of similar competitions. This Award recognises all who have played a role in the organisation and execution of the UAV Challenge since 2007, being represented by Jonathan Roberts and Andrew Keir from QUT and Dennis Frousheger from CSIRO’s Dat61.

Congratulations to all involved as the UAV Challenge has certainly achieved its objective to advance the state of the art in technology, operations, and regulatory knowledge and approvals. The UAS/RPAS industry today has been enabled in no small way by the efforts of the UAV Challenge organisers.

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