In each phase of the competition, an independent panel of MagQuest judges use the official selection criteria to nominate winners, which are then submitted to the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) for final approval. When evaluating submissions, judges assign each submission one to five points for each of the selection criteria, for a maximum of 25 points. Learn more about the MagQuest judges.

MagQuest is currently in Phase 3 of the competition. In Phase 3, judge evaluation of submissions will include an in-person oral presentation from each of the teams at the Design Review Event. Selection criteria for all phases are included below.

Phase 1 Criteria

  • Performance. The degree to which the concept could achieve or exceed the necessary data requirements for production of the WMM (see Target Performance Metrics).
  • Technical Feasibility. The extent to which the concept uses technically sound methods and the solver identifies critical assumptions and risks.
  • Operational Feasibility. The degree to which the concept accounts for and addresses real-world implementation, and the ability to continuously and reliably collect data for several WMM iterations (e.g., 20 years).
  • Innovation. The degree to which the concept creates potential efficiencies in time, money, or other resources.
  • Team. The extent to which the solver or team demonstrates expertise or recognizes what additional capabilities may be needed to advance their concept.

Phase 2 Criteria

  • Performance. The degree to which the integrated design (including sensor, platform, and data analysis) indicates an ability to achieve or exceed the necessary data requirements for production of the WMM (see target performance metrics).
  • Technical Feasibility. The extent to which the design uses technically sound methods, the solver identifies potential risks, and proposes credible mitigation strategies.
  • Operational Feasibility and Cost Fidelity. The degree to which the design accounts for real-world implementation and operation in the near term (e.g., 5 years), as well as the ability to continuously and reliably collect data for several WMM iterations (e.g., 30 years).
  • Innovation. The degree to which the design creates potential efficiencies in time, money, or other resources.
  • Team. The extent to which the solver or team demonstrates sufficient expertise that may be needed to advance their integrated design to a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of at least 5, and preferably 6, within a potential timeframe of two years (e.g., by September 2021). (see Technology Readiness Assessment in Additional Resources for more information on TRLs)

Phase 3 Criteria

  • Design Maturity. The extent to which the solver team demonstrates advancement in their solution, including the status of design trades, and hardware and software decisions.
  • Performance. The degree to which the team demonstrates the ability of their solution to meet the WMM target performance requirements, including supporting evidence and error budget.
  • Risk Mitigation. The extent to which the team identifies and addresses component and system limitations, risks, and trade-offs.
  • Operational Feasibility. The degree to which the team proposes a feasible approach to solution implementation and operation.
  • Capability. The extent to which the team demonstrates the expertise and ability required to successfully develop and implement their proposed solution.