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Swarm Drone Challenge

The startup incubator brigkAIR and the defense tech company MBDA Germany are looking for participants aged 18 and older for a highly remunerated competition in the field of drone technology and machine learning. Participants can win up to €50,000 in prize money.


What is the Swarm Drone Challenge?

An evolution of the 2021 Deep Drone Challenge, the upcoming 2024 Swarm Drone Challenge will push the boundaries of drone technology as international teams present their creative and innovative algorithms. The focus on swarms opens new horizons for the fields of artificial intelligence and machine learning.

In the “Swarm Drone Challenge 2024”, participants develop solutions in which drones cooperate in a swarm and solve tasks together in competition. The “Swarm Drone Challenge 2024” is not only a stage for the competition, but also a platform for the exchange of ideas and techniques.

Get ready to disrupt the drone industry

What's the mission?


Whether you’re flying solo or joining forces with a team, get ready to showcase your expertise in swarm management and AI. Imagine a game that combines the excitement of capture the flag with a cutting edge world of drone technology. You and your team are assigned to a designated playfield. Your mission is to infiltrate opponent territory, execute a certain task and safely return to your own domain. 

But here’s the twist: It’s not just about completing the mission. We’re looking at the bigger picture: How resilient are your drones when faced with unexpected challenges?Can they work together intelligently like a coordinated swarm to tackle complex tasks?

Let’s not forget the AI at the helm. How smart is it at recognizing intentions and making the right calls?
Each team deploys a squadron of drones that collaborate seamlessly to achieve their objectives.

As drones are increasingly used in a variety of areas, such as industrial inspection, surveying, emergency response and delivery, there is a growing demand for the development of innovative software solutions for the automation and improvement of such missions. The Swarm Drone Challenge is a drone competition that is intended to accelerate the development of such drone applications and enable new approaches.

Who are we looking for?


We are looking for enthusiasts, startups and students from diverse backgrounds, such as aviation, artificial intelligence and robotics, to solve different problems in interdisciplinary teams – anyone from an age of 18 and onwards can participate.


To participate in the Swarm Drone Challenge, please apply alone or with a team by October 2023.
After selecting the final participants, the challenge will be carried out in two events (Qualifying and Final) and involves tasks related to the private use of drones.
For the challenge itself, participants preferably can bring, build and develop their own drone prototype to fulfill the tasks. But we will also provide limited drone platforms if requested. As of now, participants can start to create their prototype at home or later on on-site with access to the provided platforms.
The best performing team has the chance to win the competition.

What do you get?

Up to €50,000
prize money



Unique event

food and goodies




The basis of the evaluation present parameters like precision, flight time and novelty. 

A high-ranking jury from politics, business and science decides on the awarding of the prize money of up to €50,000. The patron of the event is Member of the German Bundestag, Dr. Reinhard Brandl.

 #staytuned! The jury members will be announced soon!

What are you waiting for?


Most frequent questions and answers

No, the property of developed hard- and software solutions remains 100% with the participants.

Register your team here. Please make sure that the registration form is completed before submitting. 

The prize up to 50.000 € will be awarded to the highest performing team in the final event.

You can either participate with your team, which is limited to max. 5 people. 
If you do not have a team you can also apply alone and join a team. 

No costs included! We’re so excited to see you fly, we don’t want to see a single penny.

You should be at least 18 years old to join the Swarm Drone Challenge. 

Yes, we are technology open. Bring whatever you takles the challenge best. We provide a funding per team to upgrade the drone, buy sensors or GPU power. All participants can actively give feedback to the rules and regulations book. This is joint approach so that all tems are leveled out equally with their different approaches.

According to the registration form the teams with the highest potential in solving the challenge will be selected to take part in the competition. During the WarmUp they have the opportunity to test their prototype before performing during the Final event. The only selection that will happen is during the application period based on the information that you will provide in the registration form. At the Final event a jury will judge your performance. 

No, applications are open to anybody interested. The final participants will be selected by Airbus on the basis of the information provided by the applicants in the registration form. Due to the current pandemic, we may have to restrict the selection of participants to a certain extent.

In principle, drones will be on site as a backup during the final if necessary.
These are for example:
  • M600 DJI platforms
  • S1000 DJI
  • DJI Mavic Pro
  • DJI Tello
When you register, you can indicate what you need and we will then provide items (within certain limits).

No, no limitations as of right now. Let us define together if there have to be some. 

Further questions?

Contact us:

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