UK opens request for information to industry for drone related services and solutions

UK innovation incubator Connected Places Catapult has opened a Request For Information (RFI) to industry to investigate the drone-related services and solutions available now or in the near-term within the UK.

Closing date: 23 March 2021

Throughout the next year, Connected Places Catapult and its solution partners will carry out demonstrations of drone technology solutions and services as part of the Drone Pathfinder Catalyst Programme, led by Connected Places in collaboration with the Department for Transport (DfT), CAA and BEIS.  These demonstrations will provide a showcase of the untapped capabilities and benefits currently available to many UK organisations across a breadth of industry sectors.

Prior to these demonstrations, this RFI is intended to help Connected Places build a catalogue of industry capabilities, use cases and potential solution partners to inform demonstration planning and future procurements.

The Drone Pathfinder Catalyst Programme is focussed on solutions that will generate a safe operating environment, reduce the barriers to entry, and ultimately, facilitate increasing adoption and use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (drones) across the UK for economic, social, and environmental benefit.

Responding to this RFI will notify Connected Places Catapult of capabilities and interests and enable the agency to keep participants informed about specific opportunities as the programme progresses over the next 12 months.

Organisations that successfully engage in subsequent steps in the procurement process will support the programme as a solution partner and benefit from opportunities including:

  • Access to a part of a GBP250,000 funding opportunity, individually assessed per demonstration
  • Showcasing their capabilities, with successes shared nationally
  • Cross-sector industry networking and learning from best-practice
  • Signposting to other potential funding opportunities
  • Working with the CAA, DfT and BEIS, gaining opportunities to inform government roadmaps.

Specifically, the work relates to multiple aspects of the end-to-end workflow which makes up a drone service or solution, not just the drone flight. Capabilities include:

  • Drone operators
  • Drone flight planning, logistics and permissions
  • Drone technology solutions
  • Expertise in analysing, evaluation and sharing drone captured data
  • Providing drone technology hardware
  • Providing drone technology software
  • Expertise in using robotics as part of a drone solution
  • Expertise in using AI as part of the data analysis of a solution using drones.

Next steps:

Respond to the Challenge Statement

Register and download the RFI response forms

Upload response to the RFI portal

Or email to:

Closing date: 23 March 2021

For more information visit:

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