On June 22, an international jury selected five unique drone projects to be the 2017 European Drone Heroes. The public chose his own favorite project during an online voting poll. The awards were given by Belgian Defence Minister Steven Vandeput during the final of the contest at the Commercial UAV Expo Europe in Brussels.
“We have started with no less than 31 participants from 13 different European countries,” says Mark Vanlook, chairman of the Flemish dronecluster EUKA and initiator of the Drone Hero Europe 2017.
5 jury categories and 1 public award
During the Commercial UAV Expo, organized by US-based Divcom, ten finalists received the opportunity to explain their previously submitted video in a short pitch. Then an international jury chose amongst these ten the five outstanding projects to award.
These are the winners:
International Drone Hero
Dutch based Ampyx Power was voted the best international concept. With a drone alternative for windturbines, Ampyx did well with the jury. They saw a customer-validated business case that should be rolled out globally as quickly as possible.
The jury: ”“THE JURY WAS IMPRESSED BY THIS MATURE BUSINESS CASE, WHICH IS ALSO VALIDATED BY REAL CUSTOMERS. THIS HAS TO BE PUSHED TO AN INTERNATIONAL LEVEL AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!”
High Potential Drone Hero
Polish contestant Droneradar was elected as the company with the most potential. It was a tough exercise to choose between them and the Belgian Unifly, which was a difficult decision for the jury. In the end, Droneradar was rewarded for their impressive results that came about with only limited resources.
Creative Drone Hero
The Dutch organization Mine Kafon was voted the most creative drone project. They presented a demining solution with drones. The jury found it to be a project with a great social impact that could be deployed immediately.
Innovative Drone Hero
The innovative Drone Hero was awarded to the Swiss team Voliro. They developed a drone who can fly in much more flexible ways than a conventional device can. The jury saw a lot of potential for the future.
Start-up Drone Hero
Best startup was Vectrino from Croatia. They came up with a project to combat mosquito plagues. The jury saw a concept with potentially a global impact, for example in the field of preventive disease control.
Public Drone Hero
Skycan from Belgium was popular online with his search & rescue video. That landed them the public award with just under 5000 votes.