The semifinalists for the $7 million Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE have been announced.
The teams advancing will test their entries at a depth of 2,000 m, racing to map at least 20 percent of the 500 sq. km competition area at 5-m resolution and identify and image at least five archeological, biological or geological features at any depth, all within 16 hr.
Up to 10 finalist teams will be selected to proceed past Round One and will split a $1 million milestone prize purse. In Round Two, they will need to operate their entries at a depth of 4,000 m, aiming to map at least 50 percent of the 500 sq. km competition area at 5-m resolution and identify and image at least 10 archeological, biological or geological features at any depth, all within 24 hr. A $4 million grand prize and $1 million second place prize will be awarded to the teams that receive the top scores for demonstrating the highest resolution seafloor mapping after meeting all minimum requirements for speed, autonomy and depth.
As part of the total $7 million prize purse, 12 teams will also be competing for the NOAA $1 million bonus prize and will need to demonstrate that their technology can “sniff out” a specified object in the ocean by tracing a biological and chemical signal to its source.
See the 21 advancing teams here.
Image Credit: Ocean Discovery XPRIZE