Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can Non-U.S. persons and organizations participate?
A: Yes. As stated in the DTC BAA (HR001123S0011
), “non-U.S. organizations and/or individuals
may participate to the extent that such participants comply with any necessary nondisclosure
agreements, security regulations, export control laws, and other governing statutes applicable
under the circumstances.”
2. When will registration open for self-funded teams?
A: We expect the DARPA Triage Challenge to begin Fall of 2023. Rolling registration for Self-Funded teams is expected to open approximately one month prior to that.
3. What are the eligibility requirements for a team?
A: Complete eligibility requirements for teams will be posted on the DTC website, when available
). General eligibility terms will be similar to previous DARPA
challenges, and are as follows:
The DARPA Triage Challenge is open to all teams and institutions, subject to the caveats below.
• All participants under 18 years of age require the authorization of a parent or guardian.
• U.S. Government organizations may participate in the DTC but are not eligible for prizes. To the extent there is a limit on the number of participating teams, the participation by Government organizations will not prevent non-federal entities from participating in the Challenge. Government organizations that plan to participate in the DTC in any manner are encouraged to reach out to DARPA for clarification on these Terms.
• DARPA employees, DARPA support contractors, and their spouses, dependents and
household members are not eligible to participate in DTC.
• Federal employees and contractors acting outside the scope of their employment should
consult their ethics official and appropriate management before participating in the DTC.
4. How many funds for each track will be given, and what is the funding after 1 year and after 2
A: DARPA may fund Track A teams at a maximum of $750K per phase and Track D teams at a
maximum of $500K per phase. In Phase 1 DARPA expects to fund up to 7 teams in Track A and up
to 6 teams in Track D. In Phase 2 DARPA expects to fund up to 5 teams in Track A and up to 5
teams in Track D. In Phase 3 DARPA expects to fund up to 4 teams in Track A and up to 4 teams in
Track D. See Table 5 on page 23 of HR0023S0011.
5. Are the funding amounts listed in Section 1.3.3 in direct costs or total costs?
A: Total costs.
6. Can a parent company have multiple DARPA-funded teams?
A: Yes. If chosen for multiple awards, a clear path will be established for ensuring no conflicts are
present between the efforts. The parent company should be cognizant of the distribution of the
level of effort across multiple awards and will be required to ensure that DARPA is only charged
once for any potential duplicate efforts.
7. Do you anticipate potentially funding both Track A and D proposals from the same
A: Selection is based on proposal merit according to the evaluation criteria specified in the BAA. It
is possible for a company to be funded on both Track A and D.
8. We intend to use multiple sources of funding for the competition, how does that work with the
BAA evaluation criteria of cost realism?
A: The criterion will be utilized as described in Section 5.1.3 of the BAA, and proposers should
identify the source(s) and amount(s) of any proposed cost sharing in accordance with Section
4.2.2 of the BAA (page 41). Though not required, auxiliary funding/support is “encouraged where
there is a reasonable probability of a potential commercial application related to the proposed
research and development effort.”
9. Do you anticipate potentially funding both Track A and D proposals from the same
A: Selection is based on proposal merit according to the evaluation criteria specified in the BAA. It
is possible for a company to be funded on both Track A and D.
10. Are interactions between the 5 different tracks allowed and/or encouraged?
A: Yes, one of the goals of the DTC is to foster increased interactions within the medical triage
11. Are there any scenarios that a self-funded team in Phase 1 can submit a proposal to become a
DARPA funded team in Phase 2?
A: It is possible that a high performing self-funded team in Phase 1 could be selected to receive
funding in later phases of the competition pending funding availability.
12. We are working on algorithm development for another DoD program, does this affect our
ability to apply to DTC?
A: No. However, if the periods of performance will overlap, proposers should be cognizant of the
distribution of the level of effort across multiple awards and will be required to ensure that the
DoD is only charged once for any potential duplicate efforts.
13. When will the datasets be made available?
A: Training data will be made available to competitors within the first month of each phase.
14. What is the relationship with the In The Moment (ITM) program?
A: ITM and DTC are separate and complementary programs in two DARPA technical offices. The
two programs address different aspects of medical triage. Analysis of sensor data in DTC could be
used by and/or informed by the sorts of algorithmic decision-makers being developed in ITM.
15. Will DARPA facilitate teaming if a proposer cannot address all aspects of a Challenge track on
A: Proposers are responsible for assembling a complete team that has technical expertise,
capabilities, and facilities to address all requirements. Specific content, communications,
networking, and team formation are the sole responsibility of the proposer teams.
16. What types of interactions do DTC competitors have with RITMO performers? Can a DTC
competitor suggest what new data should be collected?
A: There will be multiple opportunities for DTC competitors to engage with RITMO performers.
These interactions will provide critical insights for model development and interpretation based
on RITMO performer’s expertise in the patients, physiology, practices, and sensors reflected in
their data. Additionally, feedback to RITMO performers could potentially guide adaptive changes
to RITMO approaches. However, DTC competitors should not plan on their suggestions being
incorporated into RITMO plans.
17. Is it too late to apply to RITMO?
A: Yes, source selection for RITMO has concluded.
18. Who is responsible for cleaning the data, organizing it into a usable format?
A: Data will be organized and checked for imputing and linkage errors. However, an important
part of the Challenge is handling the inherently messy aspects of physiological data recorded in
real or simulated trauma settings. Competitors should use methods that provide real-time
decision support based on the imperfect inputs expected in military and civilian mass casualty
19. At one of our team member organizations, personnel in a separate department were awarded under the RITMO program - is this considered an OCI?
A: For track A there is no conflict. For track D, per the RITMO BAA, "To avoid potential organizational conflicts of interest (OCI) or the appearance of an OCI, performers in RITMO or entities with access to data collected for RITMO will not be permitted to participate as performers in the follow-on effort unless they can demonstrate, in the proposal to the follow-on effort (1) measures to firewall individuals in the RITMO performer team; and/or (2) measures to firewall RITMO data from the individuals who would participate in the follow-on effort. DARPA will evaluate the adequacy of these measures on a case-by-case basis to determine if the proposed measures sufficiently avoid, neutralize or mitigate potential OCI."
20. Which algorithmic approach is more likely to succeed?
A: DARPA will not comment on specific approaches or technologies outside of the formal
feedback to proposal abstract submissions. Proposed algorithms must fit within the scope and
spirit of the DTC Program.
21. Will DARPA provide any infrastructure for competitors?
A: DARPA is considering the possibility of providing access to a communications network during
the competition events. Prospective teams should include a description of their networking
approach and specifications in their proposals.
22. For Primary triage real-world platforms, can they interact with people who are injured (e.g., talk
with them, ask them to move)?
A: Yes, a non-contact interaction is an acceptable approach.
23. What conditions are you looking for in primary triage? What about alive or dead?
A: The DTC seeks to address scenarios that are relevant to a military or civilian mass casualty
incident, and is concerned primarily with identifying casualties who urgently require life-saving
treatment by responders (e.g., life-threatening hemorrhage and airway injuries). A variety of
conditions are of interest, including those assessed as part of standard military and civilian triage
protocols. Further details will be provided by DTC kickoff.
24. Is the focus going to mainly military? Or civilian?
A: The goal of DTC is to address the widespread need for improved triage. There will be both
military and civilian scenarios.
25. Can we use outside Gov’t equipment (e.g., provided by a completed program?)
A: There are no specific challenge guidelines that would prevent this. Rules for use of equipment
acquired for other programs would depend on agreements in place with those sponsors.
26. Do we need to use commercially available sensors?
A: As the primary focus of the DARPA Triage Challenge is the development of physiological
signatures and analytical algorithms, not hardware, proposers are encouraged to use COTS, or
near-COTS sensors, and robotic platforms. However, if a proposing team has an aforementioned
component under development that could be modified within the duration of the program and
used in the challenge events, it can be included in the proposed approach.
27. How much of our effort can be devoted to sensor development?
A: The challenge is focused on signature identification not sensor development. While we
understand there may need to be some sensor development, the program has a tight timeline. If
proposing sensor development, teams are encouraged to include milestones on the path to
fielding the sensors for data collection as well as risk mitigation steps.
28. Would a contact sensor be considered in-scope for primary triage?
A: Developing contact sensors is out of scope for the DARPA Triage Challenge. While the overall goal of the challenge is stated as “to identify physiological signatures of traumatic injuries that can be captured with stand-off and contact-based sensors,” tracks A and B (primary triage) are
focused on stand-off identification and teams are not allowed to put sensors directly on the human subjects. Tracks D and E (secondary triage) are based on identifying physiological signatures from data that has been previously recorded in RITMO using a mix of stand-off and contact-based sensors.
29. Section 220.127.116.11 states that "Platforms must not produce any visible illumination other than
what is legally required for UAV flight." Sensor packs might produce illumination for various
purposes including general illumination, communication, etc. Is this prohibition of visible
illumination limited to the platform, or does the prohibition extend to the sensor pack in any
A: The intention of the restriction is to prevent the use of illumination (in an effort to score with a
single sensor plan) or other signals that might be observed. Yes, this prohibition applies to the
sensor pack as well.
30. For the Primary Triage tracks, do you anticipate an API / standard output separate from the UI
for scoring? Like a JSON file with location coordinates and assessment details? An API we have
to call when detections are made?
A: DARPA expects to publish an API for interfacing with the DARPA reporting and scoring servers.
31. For the Primary Triage Real-World Challenge event, can you please clarify how the actors /
patients will provide accurate signatures (e.g., thermal, breathing rate, pulse, visual paleness,
etc.) associated with their simulated injury storyline for the sensors to detect and the
algorithms to process against?
A: DARPA expects to make the real-world competition event scenarios as realistic as possible
using both well trained actors and high-fidelity manikins, which will create many opportunities for
collection of relevant data through responsiveness, movement (walking, crawling, etc.), posture,
anatomy and visible injury patterns, chest motion (e.g., reflecting respiratory or cardiac activity),
thermal or other features. Actors will have monitors attached to them to provide accurate ground
32. What will the virtual track of the Primary triage consist of? Will it be another data driven event or will there be some simulation of the collection of data (e.g., robotic autonomy, etc.)?
A: Additional details related to Primary triage virtual competition (Track C) will be released closer to kick-off.
33. Regarding UAVs, what limitations or regulations apart from the NDAA-compliance should we take into consideration, e.g., how close can we fly an UAV over a human actor? How close can we fly an UAV over a mannikin?
A: See Section 18.104.22.168 (System Elements) of the BAA. The "additional limitations" referenced in the BAA will be affected by size and weight, with a microdrone having a 1-meter minimum distance.
34. Similarly, do we need to obtain waivers for UAV pilots to be able to control multiple drones?
A: It is expected that drone pilots will need to obtain waivers to be able to control multiple UAVs.
35. Will DARPA provide any infrastructure for competitors?
A: DARPA expects to provide cloud computing resources for Secondary Triage Competitors.
36. Do you anticipate there would be a subset of LSIs that are rare in the RITMO data, or that are
administered with little or no previous clinical data for the patient?
A: Yes, challenge scoring will consider the frequency of specific LSIs in the data and availability of
preceding data for predictive model development.
37. For Secondary Triage – we currently have an algorithm that works really well at predicting LSIs
but it requires a specific data type or sensor, how do we apply if we don’t know if that data type
A: The goal of DTC secondary triage challenge is to promote the discovery of novel signatures that
enable algorithms to predict LSIs using a variety of different data sources. We expect successful
approaches will leverage multiple data sources from a variety of sensors and will be robust to
drop outs of any given data source.
38. Is there a potential that manually recorded data may not sync up well with automatically
A: Yes, there is a potential for this to happen. Algorithm development should consider the datacollection challenges in trauma settings.
39. The Secondary Triage Challenge involves human medical data from the RITMO program; do we
need a human subjects research (HSR) plan?
A: No, the medical data will be collected by RITMO performers for the purpose of supporting this
Challenge. RITMO data will be deidentified prior to release to DTC competitors.
40. In the Secondary triage competition, is all data provided by DARPA or we will have chance to do
some testing for data generation?
A: Competitors may use additional data to train their models but only RITMO data will be used in
the scored competition events. Team collected data can include data collected on manikins,
synthetic data, virtual environments, or pre-existing datasets. DARPA will not fund animal use or
human subjects research for the DARPA Triage Challenge.
41. Will competitors in the Secondary Triage Challenge be given data specifications for the
modeling/training data that will be used—e.g., data format, sampling rates and possible
A: Specific data types for secondary triage are currently being selected. Details on the types of
data we expect to have can be found in the RITMO BAA (HR001122S0043
), in brief:
At least 3000 cases pre-hospital or hospital
Data for year 1 may include:
Discrete data (text or numeric values): Patient characteristics, outcomes, imaging results,
Continuous data: ECG, PPG, RR, HR, SPO2, BP, A-line BP
Potential additional sensors for later years include:
Video and NIRs
More details on the data specifications provided will be released prior to kick-off.
42. For Secondary Triage, will the metrics of predicting LSIs administered consider the fact that in
real-world data, some LSIs may not have been administered when they were needed?
A: We will not determine case-by-case whether LSI should have been implemented in the real-world data. Useful models should take this and other real-world considerations into account