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Northrop Grumman And UAE Partners Announce 2013 Innovation Challenge Winners

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates, May 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) presented awards to the winning teams of engineering students from the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) following the two-day Innovation Challenge flying competition for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) held April 23-24 in the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.).


A photo accompanying this release is available at

Now in its third year, Innovation Challenge is sponsored by Northrop Grumman, Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments (ADASI) and the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Foundation.

"We congratulate all of the competing teams and their engineering mentors for the hard work they have put into designing and building their UAVs over the past few months," said Gene Fraser, corporate vice president, programs, quality and engineering at Northrop Grumman. "The standard of the designs has been extremely high and we look forward to seeing what these talented students achieve in the years to come."

The winning team, Emirates Robotics from Dubai Men's Campus, and the runner-up team, Spirit of Al Ain from Al Ain Colleges, will receive a trip to the AUVSI annual convention in Washington, D.C., in August. The teams will exhibit their winning unmanned aircraft and describe their design process to industry and government representatives. 

The third place team, Seven Stars from Al Ain Colleges, will also receive a trip to the AUVSI annual convention, courtesy of ADASI.

"Innovation Challenge is an excellent opportunity for our engineering, avionics and aeronautical students to gain new skills while putting into practice those they have learned during their studies," said Tayeb Kamali, vice chancellor, HCT. "This event demonstrates HCT's 'learning by doing' philosophy that underpins how our students learn, and prepares them for future careers in the U.A.E. workforce. We thank Northrop Grumman for their partnership on this important event."

Eleven teams of students worked with Northrop Grumman engineers over four months to design, fabricate and fly unmanned aircraft. As part of the flying competition, the aircraft had to meet specific criteria related to speed, endurance and weight. Each team was also judged on an oral presentation.

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