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RVC, Skolkovo Foundation and ASI announce the start of technology competitions of the NTI

8 November 2017

RVC, Skolkovo Foundation and ASI announce the start of technology competitions of the NTI

RVC, the Skolkovo Foundation and the Agency for Strategic Initiatives announce the start of the technology competitions of the National Technology Initiative. This is a new format of competitions of technologies and innovative solutions, in which the victory is awarded for an understandable, repeatable solution of the competition problem demonstrated to the jury and the general public. The estimated prize fund will be from 150 million to 200 million roubles for each competition.

Themes of the first two competitions are already known: the first one will be devoted to designing a driverless car for the Russian winter; the other one, to designing hydrogen fuel cells for small vehicles. Both competitions will start early next year, and the final tests are scheduled for the autumn of 2018.

The purpose of the first competition is to teach driverless vehicles to drive safely under extreme weather conditions. The developers are faced with the task of developing the software, designing high-performance sensors, on-board computer systems and control mechanisms. The contestants will have to design a driverless vehicle capable of driving 50 kilometers in three hours on winter roads of the cities. The first rides will take place in March 2018, and the final of the competition will be held in November 2018.

The second technology competition is aimed at designing hydrogen fuel cells for transport vehicles, which are comparable in efficiency with the traditional internal combustion engines and batteries. The competitions will be held in two nominations: power plants for small driverless vehicles as well as for cars, boats and light aircraft.

Alexander Povalko
RVC CEO
«Imagine a competition with a gold medal at the finish backed up by a substantial cash prize. This is not the payment for the R&D, not the purchase of any results of the teams. The task is set to the participants that has not yet been solved anywhere in the world, and the one who has overcome the barrier, who has created the best product, receives a significant cash prize. In the USA, a similar programme allowed launching private astronautics: winner of the X Prize competition launched a private rocket into space. Technology competitions are a very interesting story. I think we shall have a completely unique experience.»
Alexander Povalko
RVC CEO
Igor Drozdov
Board Chairman of the Skolkovo Foundation
«Prize competitions (“challenge” competitions) under the auspices of the National Technology Initiative are a new tool for Russia to support innovation. However, this tool has long been used abroad: technology competitions have stimulated the growth of the new markets there - private astronautics and driverless vehicles. In the context of the cooperation agreement on organization and holding of technology competitions signed by the Skolkovo Foundation, the RVC and ASI in June of this year we have set up a special department, which together with our partners immediately began to work. For the scientific community and engineering teams, the first two ambitious and, at the same time, specific tasks were formulated which are of strategic importance on a global scale. We hope that such competitions will allow forming a new active community of enthusiasts - scientists and engineers - which will become a generator of not only new startups, but will also ensure the competitiveness of the Russian Federation at high-tech markets in the medium and long term.».
Igor Drozdov
Board Chairman of the Skolkovo Foundation
Dmitry Peskov
Director of the "Young Professionals", ASI
«Technology competitions are one more tool for involving talents into the National Technology Initiative. The winners will be able to form teams united by super-sophisticated tasks on overcoming the technological barriers that will promote their solutions to the global market. The competitions will allow attracting much greater investments in the development than the prize fund amount spent.»
Dmitry Peskov,
Director of the "Young Professionals", ASI

Overall, until 2020, at least, six technological competitions of the NTI will be organized. The themes of the competitions will be formed taking into account the needs of innovative business and will be verified by the scientific community.

The prize fund of the competitions will be approved by the RF Government at the beginning of 2018.
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