Connect, collaborate and create technology for emergency responders.

The Tech to Protect Challenge, implemented by the RedFlash Group and SecondMuse under contract with the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR) Division, is a national open innovation contest designed to help emergency responders—including EMS, firefighters and police—accomplish their mission to serve and protect our communities nationwide.

Join entrepreneurs, inventors, and innovators with diverse backgrounds who share a common interest in creating technology that can improve the safety of their communities. Regardless of your area or level of expertise, we invite you to use your talents and join researchers, scientists, and emergency responders in advancing technologies and applications for public safety.


Up to $2,200,000 in prizes
Prizes available for online, in-person and National Contest winners to incentivize innovation
and help emergency responders save lives
Total prize purse for all codeathons
Total national prize purse for the Demonstration Round Contest
Total national prize purse for the Seed Round and Progress Round Contests

Help emergency responders save lives by advancing the future of public safety communications.

Tech To Protect

How to Participate

Attend a Codeathon Near You

Participate in Person

Participate in the Online Contest

Participate Online
Participate in person
Participate Online
April 2, 2019
Tech to Protect Challenge Kick-Off
Tech to Protect Challenge Kick-Off
Official launch of the national open innovation contest - sign-up for the email list to stay connected and get involved!
May-June 2019
Registration Open
Registration Open
In-person contest locations and contest details will be released, so be sure to register in a city near you and build your teams.
June 1, 2019
Online Contest Opens
Online Contest Opens
Virtual participants who cannot attend in-person contests are encouraged to participate by submitting your solutions online.
September 27-29, 2019
Codeathon Round 1
Codeathon Round 1
First round of in-person events hosted in 5 U.S. cities.
November 1-3, 2019
Codeathon Round 2
Codeathon Round 2
Second round of in-person events hosted in 5 U.S. cities.
November 15, 2019
Online Contest Closes
Online Contest Closes
Final submissions collected for the Online Contests.
January 24, 2020
Top Participants Selected for National Event Contests
Top Participants Selected for National Event Contests
Top-ranked participants from the in-person and the Online Contest invited to the National Award Event.
April 2020
National Award Event
National Award Event
Top participants compete in the Demonstration. Seed and Progress Round Contests and final cash prizes awarded. 
Group of people

Watch this video to learn how you can get involved


September Tech to Protect Challenge Winners Announced

13 Teams Recognized at Nationwide Regional Codeathons held Sept. 27-29, 2019

Congratulations to the September Tech to Protect Challenge winners who were recognized for their innovative technologies developed at the regional codeathons held September 27-29. Participants attended events in Washington D.C.; Chicago, IL; Denver, CO;  and College Station, TX, to connect, collaborate and create for emergency responder communications. 

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