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Funding Opportunities Roundup, May 20

Federal Opportunities

Please notify Paul Montgomery (paul.montgomery@utk.edu) of your interest in the following opportunities. 

DARPA Funding Opportunity in Mathematical/Computational Design

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has published a solicitation for the TRAnsformative DESign (TRADES) program. The goal of TRADES is to “advance the foundational mathematics and computational tools required to generate and better manage the enormous complexity of design” with regard to maximizing use of new materials and manufacturing processes. The program is structured in two “independent but collaborative” Technical Areas (TAs):

  • TA1 – Design Technologies: Several performer teams will explore and develop new mathematical and computational foundations that can transform the traditional design process.
  • TA2 – Design Testbed: A single performer will provide a software integration platform to TA1 performers, creating a common resource for collaboration and sharing of prototype implementations.

PIs may submit a proposal only to one TA. A description of each is on pp. 6-9 in the solicitation. In addition, note that this program – like most DARPA programs – seeks “innovative approaches that enable revolutionary advances,” rather than evolutionary improvements to current state of the art.

DARPA expects to issue multiple awards for TA-1 and a single award for TA-2, all with a 4-year period of performance.

DARPA “strongly encourages” proposers to submit a 7-9 page abstract by 4 p.m. on June 1, but proposals are due by 4 pm on July 26.

Department of Defense Gulf War Illness Research Program

The FY16 Defense Appropriations Act provides $20 million (M) to the Department of Defense Gulf War Illness Research Program (GWIRP) to support innovative, high-impact Gulf War Illness research.  As directed by the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, the Defense Health Agency, Research, Development, and Acquisition (DHA RDA) Directorate manages the Defense Health Program (DHP) Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation (RDT&E) appropriation.  The managing agent for the anticipated Program Announcements/Funding Opportunities is the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP).

NOTE: Individuals interested in any solicitation that limits the number of submissions allowed by UT must submit a notification of interest to limitsub@utk.edu. See the ORE limited submission policy, View current and past opportunities, and sign up for the listserv.

FY16 GWIRP Program Announcements and General Application Instructions for the following award mechanisms are posted on the website. Find more information about the following FY15 Award Applications Recommended for Funding:


NASA Funding Opportunity on Early Stage Innovations

The NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) has issued a solicitation entitled Early Stage Innovations (ESI). (It is an appendix to the 2016 Space Technology Research, Development, Demonstration, and Infusion (SpaceTech REDDI) solicitation.) ESI seeks basic or applied research “to accelerate the development of groundbreaking, high-risk/high-payoff space technologies, not necessarily directed at a specific mission, to support the future space science and exploration needs of NASA….” Only U.S. universities are eligible to submit proposals, but teaming with industry and non-profit organizations is permitted, subject to certain guidelines. In addition, collaboration with NASA researchers is expected under this program.

ESI topics are listed below, and a description of each is on pp. 3-14 of the ESI solicitation.

  • Topic 1 – High Fidelity Modeling of Parachute Inflation Dynamics
  • Topic 2 – Modeling and Simulation-Based Certification of Additive Manufacturing Processing Parameters
  • Topic 3 – Electric Propulsion Physics Theory and Model Development
  • Topic 4 – Modeling Radiation Failure Mechanisms in Wide-bandgap Semiconductor Materials for Power Devices
  • Topic 5 – Advanced Telescope Architecture Technologies and Optical Components
  • Topic 6 – Autonomous Planning for Human Spaceflight

Notices of intent are “strongly encouraged” to be submitted by June 3, while proposals are due by July 1.

NASA/STMD anticipates making a total of 10-12 awards, each worth up to $500K for up to 3 years.


ONR Funding Opportunity on Communications & Networking

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) has published a solicitation entitled FY17 Communications and Networking Discovery and Invention. This program seeks applied research to develop “measurable advances in technology that can directly enable and enhance end-to-end connectivity and quality-of-service for mission-critical information exchange among such widely dispersed naval, joint, and coalition forces.” Research areas of interest are:

  1. Compact and deployable circular polarization antenna in the UHF-, X-, or Ka-, band with high radiation efficiency and adaptive gain pattern for multi-U form factor cubesatellite communications.
  2. Near-capacity (Shannon) wideband communications mode operation over multi-channel AESA pulsed radar hardware chain (beamformer – T/R module – antenna array). Potential challenges for high bit rate communications include, amongst others, novel coding/modulation schemes resilient to saturated nonlinear power amplifier regimes, exploitation of pulse-to-pulse phase coherence and MIMO.
  3. Enhanced waveform and diversity techniques including innovative tracking for mobile troposcatter (C- to Ku- bands). S&T focus on solutions that can reuse existing apertures, minimally impact HW, and permit modular upgrade.
  4. Robust and (throughput) efficient wireless medium access mechanisms for mobile LPI/LPD network communications operating under high dynamic range, and high-interference rejection (e.g., spectral underlay), receive conditions.
  5. Mechanisms to guarantee delivery of traffic across a multi-hop ad-hoc network within a specified latency; optimization of traffic based on multiple parameters (e.g., priority, latency, jitter, etc.); multi-path TCP implementations that are cognizant of variations in path characteristics and traffic priority, and do not impact application performance; store/forward and disruption-tolerant network implementations across a cipher-text core.

A six-page (maximum) white paper is due by 3 p.m. on June 23, and, if invited, a proposal is due by 4 p.m. on September 23. Note that white papers must be delivered in hard copy and CD-ROM via postal mail or delivery service by the deadline. Note also that authors of selected white papers will be invited to give an oral presentation to ONR, tentatively scheduled for August 4.

ONR plans to make multiple awards, each up to $500K annually for up to three years.


NIH Opportunities

Join the UT NIH Research Community by contacting Jennifer Webster (jwebster@utk.edu) and start receiving the weekly NIH Digest.

  • NIH Standard Deadlines for Investigator-Initiated Research Projects
  • NIH Bioengineering Research Grants (BRG) (R01) (PAR-16-242)
  • NIH BD2K Predoctoral Training in Biomedical Big Data Science (T32) (RFA-LM-16-002)
  • NIH Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health (R21) (PAR-16-236)
  • NIH Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health (R03) (PAR-16-237)
  • NIH Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health (R01) (PAR-16-238)
  • NCI Innovative Approaches to Studying Cancer Communication in the New Media Environment (R21) (PAR-16-248)
  • NCI Innovative Approaches to Studying Cancer Communication in the New Media Environment (R01) (PAR-16-249)
  • NCI Cancer-related Behavioral Research through Integrating Existing Data (R21) (PAR-16-255)
  • NCI Cancer-related Behavioral Research through Integrating Existing Data (R01) (PAR-16-256)
  • NCI Predicting Behavioral Responses to Population-Level Cancer Control Strategies (R21) (PAR-16-257)
  • NIAAA Specialized Alcohol Research Centers (P50) (RFA-AA-17-001)
  • NIAAA Comprehensive Alcohol Research Centers (P60) (RFA-AA-17-002)
  • NIAID Informatics Methodology and Secondary Analyses to Explore Shared Immunology Study Data in ImmPort (UH2) (PAR-16-253)
  • NIAMS Centers of Research Translation (CORT) (P50) (RFA-AR-17-001)
  • NIDA Prescription Drug Abuse (R21) (PA-16-232)
  • NIDA Prescription Drug Abuse (R01) (PA-16-233)
  • NIDA / NCI / NIAAA Accelerating the Pace of Drug Abuse Research Using Existing Data (R01) (PAR-16-234)
  • NINR Building Evidence: Effective Palliative/End of Life Care Interventions (R01) (PAR-16-250)


NSF Opportunities

Please contact Sharon Pound (spound@utk.edu) regarding your interest in NSF opportunities.

Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Research Initiation Initiative (CRII) NSF 16-565

With the goal of encouraging research independence immediately upon obtaining one’s first academic position after receipt of the PhD, the Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) will award grants to initiate the course of one’s independent research. Understanding the critical role of establishing that independence early in one’s career, it is expected that funds will be used to support untenured faculty or research scientists (or equivalent) in their first three years in a primary academic position after the PhD, but not more than a total of five years after completion of their PhD. One may not yet have received any other grants or contracts in the Principal Investigator (PI) role from any department, agency, or institution of the federal government, including from the CAREER program or any other program, post-PhD, regardless of the size of the grant or contract, with certain exceptions noted below. It is expected that these funds will allow the new CISE Research Initiation Initiative PI to support one or more graduate students for up to two years.

Anticipated Type of Award: Standard Grant
Estimated Number of Awards: 55 to 60
Anticipated Funding Amount: Each award up to $175,000 for up to 2 years
Full Proposal Target Dates: Aug. 10, 2016


NSF/DOE Partnership in Basic Plasma Science and Engineering NSF 16-564

The NSF, with participation of the Directorates for Engineering, Geosciences, and Mathematical and Physical Sciences, and the Department of Energy, Office of Science, Fusion Energy Sciences are continuing the joint Partnership in Basic Plasma Science and Engineering begun in FY1997 and renewed several times since. As stated in the original solicitation (NSF 97-39), which is superseded by the present solicitation, the goal of the initiative is to enhance basic plasma research and education in this broad, multidisciplinary field by coordinating efforts and combining resources of the two agencies. The current solicitation also encourages submission of proposals to perform basic plasma experiments at NSF and DOE supported user facilities, such as the Basic Plasma Science Facility at the University of California, Los Angeles and facilities located at DOE national laboratories, designed to serve the needs of the broader plasma community.

Anticipated Type of Award: Standard Grant or Continuing Grant
Estimated Number of Awards: 20
Anticipated Funding Amount: Up to $250,000/year for 3 years
Full Proposal Target Dates: Oct. 21, 2016


Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) NSF 13-542

The REU program supports active research participation by undergraduate students in any of the areas of research funded by the National Science Foundation. REU projects involve students in meaningful ways in ongoing research programs or in research projects specifically designed for the REU program. This solicitation features two mechanisms for support of student research: (1) REU Sites are based on independent proposals to initiate and conduct projects that engage a number of students in research. REU Sites may be based in a single discipline or academic department or may offer interdisciplinary or multi-department research opportunities with a coherent intellectual theme. Proposals with an international dimension are welcome. (2) REU Supplements may be included as a component of proposals for new or renewal NSF grants or cooperative agreements or may be requested for ongoing NSF-funded research projects.

Anticipated Type of Award: Standard Grant or Continuing Grant or Cooperative Agreement
Estimated Number of Awards: Approximately 180 new Site awards and 1,600 new Supplement awards
Anticipated Funding Amount: Up to $120,000 per year
Full Proposal Target Dates: Aug. 24, 2016 (for all except those requiring access to Antarctica)

Dear Colleague Letters

  • Call for Submission of Conference Proposals to Inform the Design and Success of the Alliances and National Network for NSF INCLUDES NSF 16-081 (May. 10, 2016)
  • Supporting Research Advances in Microbiomes NSF 16-084 (May 13, 2016)
  • Reproducibility and Robustness of Results NSF 16-083 (May 18, 2016)

Find new Engagement Opportunities and Funding at engagement.utk.edu. Use SciVal Funding to conduct a self-directed search for funding opportunities from 7,000 program sponsors around the world or the Foundation Directory Online to search a database of the 10,000 largest private, community, and corporate foundations in the U.S.