Lockheed Martin and QUT partner to inspire UAV Challenge aspirants

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CANBERRA, Australia, September 13, 2017 – Lockheed Martin Australia has renewed its support of the UAV Challenge with a gold sponsorship of the events for 2017 and 2018, which will see young Australians high-school and university students further their science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) support for the next generation of innovators.

The UAV Challenge is a global competition that aims to inspire and harness the ingenuity and passion of enthusiasts, high-school and university students from around the world to develop novel and cost-effective solutions to real-world problems. It has run since 2007 and has seen over 500 high-school students and nearly 3000 unmanned aircraft developers take part overt the past ten years.

“Lockheed Martin is a global technology leader who recognises that Australia needs a constant supply of highly trained, highly capable technical talent, and to have them on board again as a Gold sponsor of the UAV Challenge is fantastic,” Professor Jonathan Roberts, a Queensland University of Technology Professor in Robotics and one of the co-founders of the UAV Challenge said.

“We created the UAV Challenge to educate and inspire young people in STEM for real world applications such as search and rescue and medical delivery.”

Lockheed Martin Australia & New Zealand Chief Executive, Vince Di Pietro, said Lockheed Martin’s ongoing support of this event is a first-hand insight into the exciting and important STEM related activities currently engaging Australian students eyeing a future career in this rapidly advancing field.

“Technology is transforming how humans and machines work together to help make better informed decisions, expand reach and access, and increase safety and productivity. Events like the UAV Challenge are clear evidence of how inspirational STEM activities can help Lockheed Martin partner with academia and others to achieve these transformations in technology and human interaction and help shape the future.” Mr Di Pietro said.

The UAV Challenge runs as a series of events over a two-year cycle, and is open to high school students, universities and enthusiasts from around the world.

The 2017 and 2018 events comprise:

  • The Airborne Delivery Challenge (September 26-28, 2017 and September 2018), involving high-school students responding to a hypothetical emergency situation that necessitates their delivering a life-saving medicine to @Outback_Joe, and
  • The Medical Express Challenge (September 24-28, 2018), where entrants (enthusiasts and university students) must retrieve a medical sample from a hypothetically stranded farmer (@Outback_Joe) who’s been cut off by flood waters and urgently needs some medical analysis to be conducted.

About Lockheed Martin Australia
Headquartered in Canberra, Lockheed Martin Australia is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation. Lockheed Martin Australia and its related entities employ more than 800 people in Australia and New Zealand working on a wide range of major programmes spanning the aerospace, defence, maritime and civil sector.

About the UAV Challenge

The UAV Challenge is a global UAV competition that is co-organised by Queensland University of Technology (QUT)|The Australian Centre for Robotic Vision and DATA61|CSIRO. In its eleventh year of running, the competition has seen over 500 teams compete, with more than 3000 team members in that time. It has greatly influenced the development of three of the most widely used low-cost autopilots (APM:Plane, PX4 and Paparazzi), and encouraged the development and commercialization of components such as the RFD900 communications modem and the Millswood Engineering failsafe flight termination device.