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Physics of the Cosmos News

Release of NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate — Early Career Faculty

19 February 2021

NASA has released a solicitation, titled Early Career Faculty (ECF), as an appendix to the Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) umbrella NASA Research Announcement (NRA) titled "Space Technology Research, Development, Demonstration, and Infusion-2021" (SpaceTech-REDDI-2021).

STMD, and the Space Technology Research Grants (STRG) Program in particular, seek proposals from accredited US universities on behalf of faculty members early in their careers as they conduct space technology research of high priority to NASA’s Mission Directorates and STMD. NASA is seeking proposals that plan to pursue innovative, early-stage space technology research in the topic areas specifically enumerated in the solicitation. Specifically, the proposals must address one of the following three topics:

  • Topic 1 – Advanced Computational Techniques for the Development of Cryogenic Refrigeration Systems
  • Topic 2 – High-Fidelity Emulation of Full-Physics Models in Earth Science
  • Topic 3 – Joining Processes for Shape Memory Alloys to Enable Advanced Structural Applications

All proposals must be submitted electronically through NSPIRES or through Grants.gov. Notices of Intent (NoIs) are due 24 February 2021, and the full proposals are due by 24 March 2021 at 5p Eastern/4p Central/3p Mountain/2p Pacific.

Only accredited US universities are eligible to submit proposals on behalf of their outstanding new faculty members who intend to develop academic careers related to space technology. The proposed research must be led by a single, eligible Principal Investigator (PI). The PI must be an untenured Assistant Professor on the tenure track at the sponsoring US university at the time of award. The PI must be a US citizen or have lawful status of permanent residency. The PI must be the primary researcher on the effort; Co-Investigators are not permitted. Collaborators (other than NASA civil servants/JPL) are permitted. See the solicitation for complete requirements regarding eligibility and for definitions and restrictions regarding collaborators.

A PI may submit only one proposal in response to this appendix.

NASA encourages submission of ECF proposals on behalf of early-career faculty members at all US universities and especially encourages women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and persons with disabilities to apply.

NASA plans to make approximately 6 awards as a result of this ECF solicitation, subject to the receipt of meritorious proposals. Resultant grant awards are up to 3 years in duration and $600K in total value. Awards are planned to start in October 2021.

Comments and questions may be addressed by e-mail to the STRG Program, at HQ-ECF-Call@mail.nasa.gov. Responses to inquiries will be answered by e-mail and may also be included in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document located on the solicitation’s NSPIRES page; anonymity of individuals/institutions who submit questions will be preserved.

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