The MIT Enterprise Forum in Israel together with the U.S. Department of Defense has announced the 2015 Combating Terrorism Technology Challenge, with a first prize of $100, 000.
The Israeli Minister of Defense Yaalon may be feuding with the American government these days and senior White House officials may have insulted Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu behind closed doors, but apparently the Israeli-American defense relationship is as strong as ever.
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America’s DOD clearly knows where to look for promising new ideas in the area of high tech defense. Israel, with its startup nation, is home to some of the world’s most innovative defense technology firms.
The sponsors of the Challenge have declared its purpose to be to identify promising new security technologies and to encourage entrepreneurs and inventors to focus their innovative talents on the critical need for counter-terrorism and homeland defense technologies.
The Challenge is open to any startup that is developing innovative technologies for combating terrorism that is still clearly in its infancy and has not yet reached $10 million in investments. University research projects are also eligible.
All firms that deal with fighting terrorism, except those that work in cyber technologies, are eligible. The submitted technology must be developed to at least Proof of Concept, for example, it must have a laboratory prototype or similar level model. The applicant must own or hold the exclusive license to the technology that it submits.
Each entry will be evaluated by an international panel of distinguished judges. The most qualified entries will participate in the finals at the Combating Terrorism Technology Conference on January 21, 2015 in Tel Aviv, where one company will be awarded the first prize by the US Defense Department, CTTSO.
Other finalists will receive mentoring by leading VC’s and Government sponsors, and exposure to relevant Government programs. All entrants will receive judges’ feedback on the strengths and weaknesses of their applications.
An online entry portal is now open and applications will be accepted until November 14, 2014.