Story image

Government-funded Callaghan Innovation offering $50,000 drone competition prize

08 Apr 15

Government-funded Callaghan Innovation has launched a competition with $50,000 up for grabs to develop unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology for the film and screen industry.

Callaghan Innovation chief executive Mary Quin said the inaugural C-Prize is aimed at boosting New Zealand's position at the forefront of UAV technology and helping keep the country's screen industry competitive.

"Increasingly directors are using unmanned aircraft to capture new visual perspectives to tell their stories," Quin said.

That trend, combined with New Zealand leading the world on progressive regulation for drone flights, presents an opportunity to Kiwi innovators to commercialise world-leading UAV technology that solves technical challenges and opportunities identified by the film industry, she said.

Those challenges include improving their ability to record and reproduce high-definition sound, operate in rough weather, and track objects for augmented reality and visual effects purposes.

New Zealand-based students and innovators have until July 5 to submit initial concepts to overcome these challenges, which will be judged by a panel of industry, technology and commercialisation experts. Those with concepts that make it through the first round will get $10,000 and support to further develop them into prototypes.

The overall winner - announced in December - gets $50,000 plus a trip to exhibit at the 2016 National Association of Broadcasters trade show in Las Vegas, the largest international trade show for media content and technology.

Innovation prizes had a good track record internationally for stimulating progress in technically-challenging industries such as space flight and Quin said she hoped the C-Prize competition will do the same for New Zealand's emerging UAV sector.

(Businessdesk is funded by Callaghan Innovation to write about the commercialisation of innovation).

How blockchain will impact NZ’s economy
Distributed ledgers and blockchain are anticipated to provide a positive uplift to New Zealand’s economy.
25% of malicious emails still make it through to recipients
Popular email security programmes may fail to detect as much as 25% of all emails with malicious or dangerous attachments, a study from Mimecast says.
Human value must be put back in marketing - report
“Digital is now so widely adopted that its novelty has worn off. In their attempt to declutter, people are being more selective about which products and services they incorporate into their daily lives."
Wine firm uses AR to tell its story right on the bottle
A Central Otago wine company is using augmented reality (AR) and a ‘digital first’ strategy to change the way it builds its brand and engages with customers.
DigiCert conquers Google's distrust of Symantec certs
“This could have been an extremely disruptive event to online commerce," comments DigiCert CEO John Merrill. 
Protecting organisations against internal fraud
Most companies tend to take a basic approach that focuses on numbers and compliance, without much room for grey areas or negotiation.
Telesmart to deliver Cloud Calling for Microsoft Teams
The integration will allow Telesmart’s Cloud Calling for Microsoft Teams to natively enable external voice connectivity from within Teams collaborative workflow environment.
Jade Software & Ambit take chatbots to next level of AI
“Conversation Agents present a huge opportunity to increase customer and employee engagement in a cost-effective manner."