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PMA-290 Prize Challenge

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Prize Challenge Synopsis

Program Manager (Air), Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircraft (PMA-290) desires to accelerate the identification and evaluation of technologies that leverage Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology (S.M.A.R.T.) data for Solid-State Drive (SSD) health assessment and visualization. The need statement for this prize challenge is a tool that can assess the health of SSDs to measure performance and predict potential failures in a way that does not disrupt the data on the drive or introduce new forms of drive wear. Additionally, the tool should provide a data management visualization capability to view and manage the historical health data of individual SSDs to support operational and maintenance decisions.

PMA-290 will sponsor a multi-phase prize challenge, which will culminate with a live challenge event tentatively scheduled for the week of 17 August 2020 in the Patuxent River MD area, to demonstrate and evaluate potential software solutions.


Prize Challenge Description

This prize challenge will be used to evaluate the state-of-the-art in relevant technologies, inform future acquisition strategies, and to satisfy merit-based competition for potential Other Transaction (OT) awards for prototyping and procurement.

Three cash prizes will be awarded at the completion of this challenge competition: $60,000 for first place, $30,000 for second place, and $10,000 for third place.

The challenge will be conducted in three phases. During Phase-1, applications will be accepted and screened. During Phase-2 of the competition, participants will be provided with a notional S.M.A.R.T. data-set and will analyze the data-set to answer standardized questions to demonstrate the accuracy of their software solution. Participants will be required to provide screen shots of their software outputs as evidence. In addition, participants will be provided with white paper instructions and must submit a white paper that describes their technical approach, operator interface, highlights their solution's unique capabilities and features, and summarizes the steps they've taken to reduce developmental risk. Participants whose solutions provide the most accurate answers to the data-set questions and most compelling white papers will be invited by the Government sponsor to compete in the Phase-3 live challenge. The Phase-2 and Phase-3 evaluation rubrics will be provided to competitors with their Phase-2 invitations.

During Phase-3 of the competition, invited participants will demonstrate their proposed solution at a live challenge event in the Patuxent River, MD area. During the live challenge event, competitors will load their software onto a Government-provided stand-alone laptop, then be provided with a new representative S.M.A.R.T. data-set and a panel of Government judges will evaluate the functionality and performance of the software solution. (Competitors will be able to bring their own laptops for software preparation and trouble- shooting if they desire, but the formal demonstration and judging will take place with a Government-provided stand-alone laptop. Software solutions must be compatible with Linux Red Hat 7.6 or later. Competitors will also participate in an oral review of their technical approach conducted by a panel of Government judges. The Phase-3 Rubric will be used by the judges to score each competitor. The Government intends to award the prizes to the competitors that comply with the requirements of the prize challenge and, all information considered, provide the greatest overall benefit to the Government.

Only U. S. citizens or permanent residents are eligible to participate. Only U.S. companies, or companies with U.S.-based offices are eligible to participate. Prize challenge participants should be aware that potential future follow-on efforts may involve classified work and performers may be required to obtain security clearances. Interested applicants should visit to apply for participation.

Technical questions may be submitted in writing to the point of contact listed at the end of this announcement. Questions and answers related to the prize challenge will be posted and updated regularly at:

Applications for participation will be accepted until 2359 EDT on 8 May 2020. Invitations to participate in Phase-2 of the competition will be issued via e-mail no later than 2359 EDT on 18 May 2020. Phase-2 submittals are due no later than 2359 EDT on 12 June 2020. Invitations to participate in Phase-3 of the competition will be issued via e-mail no later than 2359 EDT on 13 July 2020. Confirmation of participation in Phase-3 will be due no later than 2359 EDT on 17 July 2020. The Phase-3 live challenge is tentatively scheduled for the week of 17 August 2020 in the Patuxent River, MD area. Winners will be announced no later than one week after the end of the live challenge event. In the event that the live challenge must be postponed due to COVID-19 response efforts, all invitees will be notified.

The prize challenge venue is will be an off-base location in Patuxent River, MD. Additional information on the prize challenge venue will be provided to Phase-3 invitees with their invitation package.

At the Government sponsor’s discretion, the winners of this prize challenge may receive an Other Transaction Authority (OTA) award (under 10 U.S. Code, Section 2371 or 2371b) or award of a procurement contract for experimental purposes (10 U. S. Code, Section 2373) or a combination of these authorities. In the case of an award under 10 U. S. Code, Section 2371b, a successful prototype project may result in the further award of a follow-on production agreement or contract without additional competition. In the case of an award under any of the authorities mentioned significant quantities may be needed for field testing. The Government may make an award, even if all performance goals aren’t fully met.


Terms and Conditions for the Prize Challenge

The following terms and conditions apply to all participants in the challenge.

Agreement to Terms. By responding to this announcement, the participant agrees to comply with and be bound by the rules (including these terms and conditions) of this prize challenge and the decisions of the Government. Rules and decisions are binding and final in all matters relating to this challenge.

Security Requirements. By responding to this announcement, the participant agrees to comply with the DoDM 5200.01 (all volumes) and the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual (DoD 5220.22-M) and any revisions to those manuals.

Participation by Government Support Contractors. Government support contractors will assist in the review of any data provided by participants. However, the Government will be solely responsible for determining which applicants will be extended an invitation to participate in the prize challenge. A non-disclosure agreement (NDA) has been signed by the support contractors with the Government that precludes them from disclosing any proprietary data outside of the Government. If participants desire a separate NDA with the Government support contractors, participants should submit a NDA form, along with instructions, with their initial application.

Malware. Each participant warrants that their submission is virus free and free of malware.

At its discretion, the Government may not evaluate and may disqualify a final submission if the participant fails to comply with the terms and conditions of this challenge, complete the model, rubric or provide the information requested in the written description, or the Government may contact the participant for additional information.

By participating in this Challenge, each individual (whether participating singly or in a group) warrants and assures the Government that any data used for the purpose of submitting an entry for this Challenge, were obtained legally through authorized access to such data.

Eligibility Requirements. Eligibility is subject to verification by the Government before cash prizes are awarded. Participants (residents or entities) who are designated by the United States Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control are not eligible to receive any cash prize in the challenge. Participants who are listed, or become listed, on the Excluded Parties List found on, have any active exclusions, or are otherwise unable to be deemed responsible in accordance with FAR 9.104-1 based on information available in FAPIIS, are not eligible to receive any cash prize in the challenge.

Only U.S. citizens and entities incorporated in and maintaining a primary place of business in the United States are eligible to receive cash prizes in this challenge.

Federal employees, including NAVAIR employees, and NAVAIR support contractors acting within the scope of their employment are not eligible to participate in the challenge. Likewise, members of their immediate family (spouses, children, step-children, siblings, step-siblings, parents, step-parents), and persons living in the same household, whether or not related, are not eligible to participate in any portion of this challenge. Federal employees and contractors acting outside the scope of their employment should consult their ethics official and appropriate management before participating in the challenge.

Individuals and organizations that are funded by NAVAIR to support PMA-290 including, but not limited to, any Federally Funded Research and Development Centers and University Affiliated Research Centers (UARCs), or private-sector personnel whose scope of work includes solid-state drive health management systems technical development or administrative support are not eligible to participate in the challenge.

Taxes. Tax treatment of prizes will be handled in accordance with U.S. Internal Revenue Service guidelines. The winners must provide a U.S. taxpayer identification number (e.g. a social security number) to receive the cash prize.

Payment. In order for Phase-3 live challenge winners to receive a cash prize from the Government, they must be registered as a vendor in the System for Award Management ( and have a CAGE Code. There is no cost to register. If you have any questions about the registration process, please direct your questions to the POC referenced at the end of this announcement. Failure to register on by the commencement of the Phase-3 live challenge will result in a disqualification of the winning entry.

Government Right to Cancel, Suspend or Modify Challenge. The Government reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel, suspend or modify the challenge. These rules may be changed without prior notice, and all participants should monitor for the latest information. The Government further reserves the right to select no winners or select various combinations of winners (e.g. only two qualified vendors permit a limited award pool for 1st and 2nd place awards) and award no prize money or a reduction of prize money if the Government determines, in its sole discretion, that an award is not in the best interest of the Government.

Decision Authority. The PMA-290 Program Manager will be the final decision authority for all matters concerning the challenge.

Responsibility for Costs Incurred. Participation in this Prize Challenge will be at participant expense. The Government will not be responsible for any costs incurred by the participant, to include submission costs, travel costs, technology demonstration or development costs or any associated costs. Nothing in these rules, to include information on the websites publicizing the award, may be interpreted as authorizing the incurrence of any costs, or modifying the statement of work or authorizing work outside the terms and conditions of any existing agreements or contracts with the Government.

Release of Claims. The participant agrees to release and forever discharge any and all manner of claims, equitable adjustments, actions, suits, debts, appeals, and all other obligations of any kind, whether past or present, known or unknown, that have or may arise from, are related to or are in connection with, directly or indirectly, this prize challenge or the participant’s submission.

If invited to participate in the prize challenge, the participant agrees not to file any claims against the U. S. Government, or any of its authorized agencies or personnel, or otherwise seek any form of reimbursement for the use, or compensation for the loss, damage to, or destruction of the product displayed during the challenge. The participant agrees to release and hold harmless the United States, the Department of the Navy and all their employees and contractors, from any and all claims or demands resulting from any loss, damage, death, or injury that may arise from the setup, demonstration, display, or teardown of the participant’s property. Compliance with Laws. The participant agrees to follow and comply with all applicable federal, state and local laws, regulations and policies.

Liability. . By participating in this challenge, the participant agrees to assume, and thereby has assumed, any and all risks of injury or loss in connection with, or in any way arising from participation in this challenge, or development of any submission. Indemnification. The participant indemnifies the Government and its affiliates, directors, officers, employees against all liabilities, damages, losses, costs, fees (including legal fees), and expenses relating to any allegation or third-party legal proceeding to the extent arising from :

(a) The participant’s acts or omissions in relation to the challenge (including the participant’s use or acceptance of any prize and the participant’s breach of these Terms); and

(b) The participant’s submissions violating any rights of any other person or entity or any obligation the participant may have with them.

Disclaimers. All content provided by the government is provided on an "as is" and "as available" basis. The Government disclaims all representations and warranties (express or implied), including any warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. The Government is not responsible for any incomplete, failed, or delayed transmission of your application information or submissions due to the internet, including interruption or delays caused by equipment or software malfunction or other technical problems. Reference herein to any specific commercial products, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the United States Government.

Severability. If any term (or part of a term) of these terms or rules is invalid, illegal or unenforceable, the rest of the terms or rules will remain in effect.

Translations. Submissions must be in English. The Government may give participants an opportunity to correct non-substantive errors in submission packages, when feasible and at its discretion. In the event of any discrepancy between the English version of these terms and rules and a translated version, the English version will govern.

Governing Law. This prize challenge is subject to all applicable federal laws and regulations. All claims arising out of or relating to these terms will be governed by the federal laws and regulations of the United States of America.

Availability of Funds. The Government’s obligation for prizes under 10 U.S.C. 2374a is subject to availability of appropriated funds from which payment for prize purposes can be made. No legal liability on the part of the Government for any payment of prizes may arise unless appropriated funds are available to the United States Navy for such purposes.


Points of Contact

For questions related to the challenge, contact Charles Stanley,, (404) 407-6572.


Evaluation Criteria

During the prize challenge, the Government will evaluate the extent to which participant systems meet or exceed minimum criteria in a way that provides value to the Government. Additional information will be provided to each competitor with their prize challenge invitation package.



To apply for participation in the SSD Health Assessment and Visualization Tool Prize Challenge, please complete the application form below and submit by clicking on the “Submit” button at the end of the form.



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