Israeli high-tech companies invited to participate in the Winter City contest


The Israel Innovation Authority and Russian Up Great technology contests start to cooperate as part of the Winter City challenge focused on the development of an autonomous vehicle for the Russian winter.

Israeli high-tech companies developing autonomous driving technologies, products and solutions are invited to team up with the Winter City finalists. The Israeli government has agreed to cover up to 50% of the national teams’ costs on R&D associated with the launch of joint pilot projects with the winners.

Participation in the contest will enable Israeli high-tech companies to test their solutions in the harsh conditions of the Russian winter, which will be simulated at special facilities of NAMI (Central Scientific Research Automobile and Automotive Engines Institute) in the Moscow region. In addition, working with the Winter City finalists will help the Israeli participants get to know the key players among Russia’s venture capital market and obtain extensive coverage in the Russian media.

The final of the Winter City challenge will be held in December 2019 in Moscow at the NAMI auto testbed, with five teams taking part: NGTU (Nizhny Novgorod State Technical University), BaseTracK (Basetrack Rus LLC, Moscow), Winter City (MADI, Moscow Automobile and Road Construction State Technical University), StarLine (StarLine NPO, St. Petersburg) and AUTO-RTK (united team of the Scientific Design Bureau of Computing Systems and On-Board Intelligence Systems company from Taganrog, the SFU (Southern Federal University) and SWSU (South-West State University). More information on the finalists is available here.

The teams will test their vehicles and attempt to overcome the technological barrier: drive 50 km on winter roads in less than three hours without breaking any traffic rules. The contest’s prize fund is $3 million. Detailed requirements for the final test and the evaluation procedure of the winners are set out in the Technical guidelines.


Up Great are the largest technology contests in terms of the prize fund in Russia. Competitions are designed similar to the model of prestigious international competitions like XPrize, DARPA Grand Challenge, etc. Participants have tasks to develop solutions to the most challenging technical problems in the World, which nobody has solved yet. A team, which wins a global technological barrier, receives a significant prize – up to USD 3M, if demonstrates a clear and repeatable solution to the experts, jury, and public. In 2018, the first Up Great contests started: "Winter City" (driverless vehicles under winter city conditions) and "First Element" (hydrogen energy). RVC, Skolkovo Foundation, and ASI initiated Up Great technology contests to support the National Technology Initiative (NTI), a long-term complex program to develop innovation-based new economy and create conditions for local companies to become leaders on new high-tech markets that will define global economic structure for the upcoming 15-20 years.

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