MUX Program Prize Challenge


The Navy announced a prize challenge May 22 for its future Marine Air/Ground Task Force, Unmanned Aerial System, Expeditionary (MUX), a ship-based, long endurance UAS. 

The MUX IPT intends to use all available methods of engineering and test to decrease time to field and increase first pass yield on its material solution. They intend to use best of breed model based systems engineering, capabilities based test and evaluation and mid-tier acquisition as tools to decrease cycle time. 

The Navy’s Multi-Mission Tactical UAS program office (PMA-266) at NAVAIR will oversee MUX.

In order for NAVAIR to meet its aggressive fielding date, PMA-266 will award prize challenges in two phases. The first phase will seek design concepts for payloads and modularity, emphasizing minimal size and weight while maximizing performance. The challenge submissions will be scored and evaluated by a panel of judges. Vendors will receive $700,000 for first place; $200,000 for second place; and $100,000 for third place.

The results of the first phase will inform a second prize challenge for airframe and power plants. The Navy expects to award a series of up to eight prize challenge awards for MUX.

The Marine Corps is looking to field MUX in 2026 on its guided missile destroyers. For more information on prize challenges visit

Official Rules for the MUX prize challenges

Airborne Early Warning (AEW) Payload Prize Challenge Official Rules

Data Relay (DR) Payload Prize Challenge Official Rules 

Electronic Warfare (EW) Payload Prize Challenge Official Rules

Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) Payload Prize Challenge Official Rules


Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  On the NAVAIR website, there are detailed instructions for 4 of the 6 challenges (EW, Data Relay, AEW, and ISR Payloads) with an Initial Application date of 03 Jun.  However, the 2 remaining (Mission Systems Architecture and Payload Adapter) are not listed on the Challenge website yet.

Can you provide information on when these 2 challenge details/rules will be promulgated and when the Initial Applications will be due? 

A: The initial application period for the four challenges that have already been posted ends 11:59 pm EST on 03 June 2019. However, the initial application period for the two challenges you mentioned (Mission Systems Architecture and Payload Adapter) does not end until 11:59 pm EST on 26 September 2019 and therefore have not yet been posted. Please refer to the applicable FBO posts for all other dates related to those challenges and please continue to monitor for any additional MUX prize challenges.

Q:  Can participants submit one application to address more than one challenge or must they apply separately for each challenge?

A:  Yes, you can submit one application to cover multiple challenges. However, please explicitly address which challenges you are applying for and please note that some prize challenges request different information than others in the initial application.

Q: I cannot open the starter model that was delivered with the prize challenge invitation.

A: The instructions for opening .mdzip files are as follows:

  1. Open your Cameo Systems Modeler application (or Cameo Enterprise Architect)
  2. Go to "File", click on "Open Project"
  3. Navigate to the location on your computer where the .mdzip file was saved
  4. Click on the file and then click the “Open” button
  5. The file will then be opened