NATO DIANA Pilot Challenges 2023


 North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Defence Innovation Accelerator for the North Atlantic (DIANA) 

For More Information

DIANA Program Website


On Monday, 19 June, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Defence Innovation Accelerator for the North Atlantic (DIANA) launched its first three pilot challenges. Applications are now open to world-class innovators who have exceptional ideas to help solve dual-use critical defence and security problems.

DIANA’s Pilot Challenge call focuses on the following three areas:

  • Energy Resilience:
    In an uncertain and changing world, there is an urgent need for more reliable, resilient and efficient energy solutions — particularly in the aftermath of natural disasters or in conflict zones. Climate change and its consequences will only make that need greater.
    For this challenge, DIANA is therefore seeking technology solutions that enable the modular design of microgrids that can meet supply demands reliably. Of interest are technologies and systems that are capable of scaling and that are interoperable with other similar systems; renewable power generation; power storage; hardware and software for adaptive and intelligent power conditioning and management; and technologies for the detection and protection of the physical system and components from malicious cyber-attack. 
  • Secure Information Sharing:
    By secure information sharing, we typically mean the ability to exchange documents and other static content with others safely, without the risk of interference by malicious actors. However, while protecting document-based information transfer in an office environment is important, it is a simpler task than securing multiple forms of information flow when working in the field or on the move, as is often the case with first-responders, peacekeeping forces and the military.
    For this challenge, DIANA is looking for ways of creating a secure and trusted information environment — with the emphasis on live data streams such as those used to provide near real-time video, augmented reality feeds, digital radio and more. Of particular interest are hardware and software solutions that operate over open networks and that can function in ‘austere’ or ‘disadvantaged’ environments.
  • Sensing and Surveillance: 
    Coastal waters are vital to the economic and security interests of the countries whose borders they touch and critical to all who rely on them for commerce, transportation, recreation and food, for example. Yet, even today, our understanding of the undersea environment is limited — not least because many standard methods of observation don’t work well underwater and because the marine environment is difficult to access and to work in for extended periods.
    For this challenge, DIANA is seeking components and systems for sensing and information gathering in subsurface coastal zones. Applications of interest might include, but are not limited to, novel techniques and/or advanced capabilities for seafloor mapping, undersea infrastructure monitoring, manmade object and marine-life tracking, climate-change-effects sensing, and patterns-of-life visualisations.

Companies whose proposals show exceptional promise will be invited to an online interview and pitch event, which will result in the selection of around 30 companies. Those companies will receive non-dilutive grants of EUR 100,000 and will be accepted into Phase One of the DIANA accelerator program called ‘Boot-camp’. Participants will join a cohort of innovators from across the Alliance at one of five regional accelerator sites for a custom-built defence and security and dual-use accelerator program. During this first six months, companies will work on evolving or adapting their technology solutions, in accordance with their proposed solutions.


A company must be the lead applicant. Any incorporated company headquartered in a NATO member nation is eligible to participate in a DIANA challenge.

Funding Availability

In Phase one of the DIANA accelerator program, approximately 30 innovators will receive grant funding of $150,000 CAD/ € 100,000 EUR starting in late 2023. At the end of Phase One, a smaller number of companies will be offered an additional grant of up to $450,000 CAD/ € 300,000 EUR and be invited to participate in Phase Two of the accelerator program called ‘Scale.’ During this second six months, companies will focus on demonstrating their technological solution, developing transition strategies, and working with investors and end users to identify pathways to adoption.

Maximum Project Value

$150,000 CAD / € 100,000 EUR (Phase 1)

Project Duration

6 months (Phase 1)


If College-level review is required, your College will communicate its earlier internal deadlines.

External Deadline

Call for proposals deadline

UofG applicants should inform if their application is selected to proceed. Each application or proposal to be submitted to a research sponsor (government, industry, business, foundation, private or other) must be approved by the University (Research Services Office) before the application is forwarded to the sponsor. To allow time for RSO review and processing, full applications (including an OR-5 Form, research proposal/application, and a budget) should be submitted to two weeks in advance of external deadlines.

For Questions, please contact

Any questions related to DIANA challenges or eligibility should be directed to NATO DIANA via DIANA’s official website.

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