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US, India to Hold Defense Tech Competition for Startups

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The United States and India have agreed to launch a defense technology development competition comprising various challenges for startups in both countries. 

During a meeting of the India-U.S. Defense Acceleration Ecosystem senior advisory group on Tuesday, the U.S. Defense Innovation Unit and India’s Innovations for Defence Excellence announced that the first two joint prize challenges will begin in the coming weeks. The tasks will focus on undersea communication and maritime intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, earlier identified by the two sides as high collaboration areas.

Winners will receive financial awards, along with an opportunity to have their technologies employed for real-world defense applications.

According to a fact sheet, the U.S. Department of Defense and the Indian Ministry of Defense established the INDUS-X platform in June to expand the strategic technology partnership and defense industrial cooperation between governments, businesses and academic institutions.

In support of the collaboration effort, American and Indian entities have organized programs focused on innovation and business development. 

The Hacking4Allies accelerator and Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad hosted a program to help 50 Indian startups commercialize, recruit talent and expand their business.

Pennsylvania State University and IIT Kanpur, meanwhile, organized a virtual meeting that gathered U.S. and Indian academics, government officials and industry representatives to discuss the development of innovation ecosystems to advance technologies in artificial intelligence, space and cyber domains.

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