Please note that the details of this Challenge are no longer open. This challenge is awarded and is no longer accepting new submissions. You can:
Challenge Rapid Image Colorization

Rapid Image Colorization

STATUS: Awarded
Active Solvers: 247
Posted: Jul 10 2018
Challenge ID: 9933931
Team Project Rooms are available on this Challenge. Team Share Challenge Share

The Seeker desires demonstration of an algorithm that can rapidly, accurately, and automatically colorize grey scale panchromatic images.

This is a Reduction-to-Practice Challenge that requires written documentation, output from the algorithm, and, upon request, submission of source code for validation. The Seeker does not require IP transfer or licensing of algorithms in return for the award.  Instead, the Seeker anticipates acquiring solutions that fully meet their needs in accordance with applicable law, regulation and policy.

Approved for Public Release, 18-672


In remote sensing the highest spatial resolution images are panchromatic grey scale images. Unfortunately the lack of color makes the images less useful and can hinder or prevent an accurate assessment of the information contained within the image. This may be made even more problematic if an imaged area contains fleeting activity and there is insufficient time to obtain color imagery of the area. The Seeker desires demonstration of a method to rapidly and accurately colorize a panchromatic image to aid in the analysis of such images under these circumstances. This goes well beyond simple colorization of an old black and white image in terms of the size of the image and the speed at which the colorization must be accomplished. Panchromatic images of interest typically run to the tens or hundreds of thousands of pixels square and can be upward of ten gigabytes in size and must be computed in a matter of hours.

A submission to the Challenge should include the following:

  1. A detailed description of the proposed Solution addressing specific Technical Requirements presented in the Detailed Description of the Challenge. This should also include a thorough description of the algorithm used in the Solution accompanied by a well-articulated rationale for the method employed.
  2. Output from the proposed algorithm applied to a specified test data set. Output must be in the form described in the Detailed Description of the Challenge. Upon submission, Solvers grant the Seeker a non-exclusive license to utilize submitted colorized images. Please see the Challenge Specific Agreement (CSA) for further details.
  3. For the top rated submissions, the Seeker may request source code and/or an executable with sufficient documentation to enable the Seeker to compile, execute the algorithm, and validate the method using additional validation data sets.

The Challenge award is contingent upon evaluation and validation of the method/algorithm and submitted algorithm output by the Seeker.

To receive an award, Solvers will not have to transfer their exclusive IP rights to the Seeker nor grant a license to the Seeker for the algorithm. Instead, the Seeker anticipates acquiring solutions that fully meet their needs in accordance with applicable law, regulation and policy. 

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on September 9, 2018. 

Late submissions will not be considered.


Participation in this Challenge is open to individuals and private entities.  Entries may only be submitted by a registered participant.

  • May not be a Federal entity.
  • May not be a Federal employee acting within the scope of their employment.  Federal employees may not pursue an application while in the Federal workplace or while on duty.
  • Employees of NGA and NGA support contractors directly supporting the development or execution of this challenge, including their spouses and dependents for tax year 2018, are not eligible to participate.
  • Federal grantees may not use Federal funds to develop challenge applications unless consistent with the purpose of their grant award.
  • Federal contractors may not use Federal funds from a contract to develop challenge applications or to fund efforts in support of a challenge submission.
  • May not be a judge of the Challenge, or any other party involved in the design, production, execution, or distribution of the Challenge or the immediate family of such a party (i.e. spouse, parent, step-parent, child, or step-child).


The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) delivers world-class geospatial intelligence that provides a decisive advantage to warfighters, policymakers, intelligence professionals and first responders. Anyone who fights wars, locates targets, sails a U.S. ship, flies a U.S. aircraft, makes national policy decisions, responds to natural disasters, or even navigates with a cell phone relies on NGA. NGA enables all these critical actions and shapes decisions that impact our world through the indis­pensable discipline of geospatial intelligence (GEOINT). NGA is a unique combination of intelligence agency and combat support agency. It is the world leader in timely, relevant, accurate and actionable GEOINT. NGA enables the U.S. intelligence community and the Department of Defense (DOD) to fulfill the president’s national security priorities that protect the nation. NGA also anticipates its partners’ future needs and advances the GEOINT discipline to meet them. NGA is the lead federal agency for GEOINT and manages a global consortium of more than 400 commercial and government relationships.

Approved for Public Release, 18-672

What is InnoCentive?
InnoCentive is the global innovation marketplace where creative minds solve some of the world's most important problems for cash awards up to $1 million. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with InnoCentive to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is an RTP Challenge?

An InnoCentive RTP (Reduction to Practice) Challenge is a prototype that proves an idea, and is similar to an InnoCentive Theoretical Challenge in its high level of detail. However, an RTP requires the Solver to submit a validated solution, either in the form of original data or a physical sample. Also the Seeker is allowed to test the proposed solution. For details about treatment of IP rights, please see the Challenge-Specific Agreement.

Share This Challenge