The Pacific Drone Challenge™ ("Challenge") offers no prizes, and is open to anyone who wishes to form a team. A team must meet the following rules in order to be eligible to compete in the Challenge:

1) A team must fly from the Sendai UAV Test Range in North-Western Japan to the Moffett Field in Sunnyvale, California in the United States - unmanned, un-refueled and non-stop. A team must obtain any individual permits for taking off from the Sendai facility and for landing at Moffett (from the US Military - the owners of the Moffett facility). No permits or permit assistance will be provided by the Pacific Drone Challenge™. A team must conform to any rules or regulations of any regulatory agency or authority in order to obtain the necessary permit. No assistance will be provided to teams by the Pacific Drone Challenge™ in the permitting process.

2) In order to win the challenge, a team's air vehicle must fly uniterrupted and may not land, refuel or carry any pilots or passengers whatsoever. Any interrpution in flight during the Challenge run will result in disqualification.

3) A team's entry must pass an Integrated Safety Review Board (ISRB) and a Flight Operations Review Board (FORB), organized by an independent 3rd party that is not associated with the Pacific Drone Challenge™ but approved by the Challenge as to methodology and processes for board formation and approval. No team will be eligible to participate in the Challenge without clearance from the two boards. Each board will independently determine a team's eligibility to participate.

4) All permits, flight plans and other permissions required to conduct the flight are the responsibility of each team. Each team must obtain permission by all governing and operating authorities to operate their air vehicle in their specific airspace - as well as permission to operate in international airspace.

5) A team's air vehicle must bear a certificate of airworthiness from the Japanese Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) and the US FAA. Each team must file a flight plan and the flight plan must be approved by the JCAB and/or the FAA prior to flight.

6) A team's entry must fly in accordance with the IFR requirements and/or standards of both the JCAB and FAA during the race, which includes lost communications, safety and recovery plans, as described in a Flight Operations Plan.

7) A team's entry must carry the necessary equipment to fly in Class A National and International airspace as mandated by both the JCAB, FAA and international aviation authorities.

8) A team's pilot(s) must be licensed by both Japan and the United States authorities to fly a UAV (if so mandated by national authorities), as well as licenses to operate in Class A and internatiponal and national airspace, and any additional licenses that may be required by local authorities to operate within their specific airspace.

9) Each team must carry insurance for their entry to include property damage and loss-of-life. All teams operate at their own risk and must indemnify the Pacific Drone Challenge™, in writing, from any liability. Further, the Pacific Drone Challenge™ must be named as an "also insured" on any insurance policy obtained by a team to enter the Challenge. A copy of the policy from the team's insurance company, with the Pacific Drone Challenge™ specifically named as indemnified and additionally insured,  must be provided to the Pacific Drone Challenge™ as part of the qualification process.

10) Each team must prepare and submit a Flight Operations Plan (FOP) to the Pacific Drone Challenge™ at least 180 days prior to their intended date of launch, and notify the Challenge with 90 days prior notice when they intend to fly the Challenge to allow the Challenge the opportunity to validate a team's accomplishment. No team will be allowed to compete until the ISRB, the FORB are approved by the 3rd party review boards and the FOP is approved by the Pacific Drone Challenge™ staff.

11) Each team will provide the Challenge with unlimited and unrestricted use of any team images, materials or other property owned or controlled by an entry team in order to promote the race. Attribution will be provided where and when requested.

Not permitted:

1) Any interruptions in the flight whatsoever. Interruptions include landing prior to the completion of race, in-flight refueling by a 2nd aircraft, or hovering above a boat, barge or other vehicle for the purpose of replenishing fuel in the Challenge air vehicle.

2) Balloons, dirigibles or tethered aircraft of any type.

3) Rockets or spacecraft, or any that use hypergolic fuels.

4) Unsafe operation of aircraft, including the violation of regulations contained in US 14 CFR Part 91 or 14 CFR Part 107.

5) Operation of aircraft without the proper permits and licenses by the aircraft and/or the air crew.

6) Any team that violates FAA or JCAB regulations in testing or operation of their aircraft will be immediately suspended and, following finding of fault, disqualified and/or eliminated from the Challenge.

7) Any violation of 14 CFR during the Challenge flight will immediately disqualify a team's entry in the Challenge.

The size, weight, speed and altitude are all unrestricted for the competition. Other rules may be added as necessary to maintain safety and/or legality of the operation of the Challenge and its teams.

Bear in mind: the purpose of the Pacific Drone Challenge™ is to demonstrate what current drone technology is capable of achieving. Think Charles Lindbergh and the Orteig Prize, as opposed to the X-Prize for Manned Spaceflight.

The Pacific Drone Challenge reserves the right to change the rules without notice in the interest of safety, and fair competition.


NOTICE OF RULE CHANGE;
Please be aware that as of December 1, 2017 a rule change has been made to protect the fundraising efforts of entry teams. Only one entry team (known as the "primary") per country will be allowed  until that team has secured all sponsors. Other entries from the same country will be placed on a waiting list on a first-come, first serve basis. Following the completion of the primary's fund raising efforts, the company at the "top" of the waiting list will then be cleared as a provisional entrant to raise sponsorship funds in their country. After the secondary team has completed funding, the next team on the waiting list will be cleared to start sponsorship fund raising.The purpose of rule is to prevent several companies from competing for the same pool of sponsorship funds. All entries are first-come, first served, with preference given to those entrants that have completed all the steps contained in the "Rules". Please note that this rule change does not apply to those teams that are self-funded and do not require sponsorship money to build, test and compete in the Pacific Drone Challenge™. Violation of this rule will result in disqualification from the Challenge.


The Pacific Drone Challenge™ Rules