NASA EPSCoR Research Funding Opportunity

The FY 2023 In-state Maine NASA EPSCoR Research Competition is CLOSED!

Introduction

The NASA Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993, Public Law 102-588, and its Reauthorization Act of 2017 (Public Law 114-329 Section 103) authorizes NASA to initiate NASA EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) to strengthen the research capability of jurisdictions that have not historically participated equably in competitive aerospace research activities. The goal of NASA EPSCoR is to provide funding that will enable jurisdictions to develop a research enterprise directed toward long-term, self-sustaining, nationally competitive capabilities in aerospace and aerospace-related research. This capability will, in turn, contribute to the jurisdiction’s economic viability and expand the nation’s base for aerospace research and development.

The following are the specific objectives of NASA EPSCoR:

  • Contribute to and promote the development of research capability in NASA EPSCoR jurisdictions in areas of strategic importance to the NASA mission;
  • Improve the capabilities of the NASA EPSCoR jurisdictions to gain support from sources outside the NASA EPSCoR program;
  • Develop partnerships among NASA research assets, academic institutions, and industry; and
  • Contribute to the overall research infrastructure and economic development of the jurisdiction.
  • Based on the availability of funding, NASA will continue to help jurisdictions achieve these goals through NASA EPSCoR. Funded jurisdictions’ proposals shall be selected through a merit-based, peer-review competition. Proposals will be evaluated by the Mission Directorate offices that are involved in this effort and accepted by the NASA EPSCoR Project Office.

NASA’s Office of STEM Engagement (OSTEM), in collaboration with the Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD), Science Mission Directorate (SMD), Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD), Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate (ESDMD) and the Space Operations Mission Directorate (SOMD), annually solicits proposals for the NASA EPSCoR Research program.

Each funded NASA EPSCoR proposal is expected to establish research activities that will make significant contributions to NASA’s strategic research and technology development priorities and contribute to the overall research infrastructure, science and technology capabilities of higher education, and economic development of the jurisdiction receiving funding.

NASA will assign a Technical Monitor (TM) to each award. The TM will monitor the progress of the research and collaborate as required to keep the research aligned with the approved project. The awardee will provide annual reports regarding the progress of the research; each report will be reviewed by the TM and approved by the NASA EPSCoR Project Manager. These reports will be shared with the NASA Mission Directorates, Centers, and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) as necessary.

The program parameters are:

  • Jurisdictions responding to a NASA EPSCoR NOFO may submit only one proposal. It is anticipated that ten (10) to fifteen (15) awards of up to $750,000 each, to be expended over a three-year period of performance. The exact number of awards depends on the available NASA EPSCoR Research Budget.
  • Cost-sharing by proposers is required at a level of at least 50% of the requested NASA funds. Also, acceptable in-kind cost-sharing is allowable.
  • The Government’s obligation to make an award is contingent upon the availability of appropriated funds from which payment can be made.

Eligibility

While proposals can be accepted only from institutions where a NASA EPSCoR Jurisdiction Director is currently serving (in Maine, that would be the Maine Space Grant Consortium), all institutions of higher education, non-profit research organizations, and technology-based for-profit organizations within the jurisdiction shall be made aware of this NOFO and given the opportunity to submit a proposal to the NASA EPSCoR Jurisdiction Director for competition for submission to NASA.

As stated in NASA EPSCoR legislation, jurisdictions eligible to compete for this opportunity are those jurisdictions eligible to compete in the National Science Foundation (NSF) EPSCoR Research Infrastructure Improvement Grant Program (RII). NSF eligibility is based on whether the most recent three-year level of NSF research support is equal to or less than 0.75 percent. The most recent eligibility table is located here.

Proposals will be accepted from the resident institution of the NASA EPSCoR Jurisdiction Director in each jurisdiction. The 28 jurisdictions that are eligible for the opportunity in this NOFO are Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Delaware, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, US Virgin Islands, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Preparation for the FY 2023 NASA EPSCoR Research NOFO

In preparation for the official release of the FY2023 NASA EPSCoR NOFO, the Maine NASA EPSCoR Program has issued its own in-state solicitation to (a) provide potential applicants a head start and ample time to prepare and submit their proposals to the MSGC and its Maine NASA EPSCoR Technical Advisory Committee for review; and (b) provide the MSGC sufficient time to conduct the external and instate review of each application by the Maine NASA EPSCoR Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). Each applicant will have an opportunity to present their research proposal to the Maine NASA EPSCoR TAC and address comments from the external reviewers. Maine, as other NASA EPCoR jurisdictions, is allowed to submit one Research proposal for potential funding under the NOFO. The Maine Space Grant Consortium will submit the selected proposal via NSPIRES.

All Maine institutions of higher education, not-for-profit research institutions, and technology-based for-profit organizations whether or not they are Affiliates of the Consortium, are invited to submit proposals to the Maine NASA EPSCoR Program in response to the FY 2023 NASA EPSCoR NOFO release.  US citizenship is not an eligibility requirement.

FY 2023 In-State Maine NASA EPSCoR Research Competition Deadline Dates:

  • Letters of Intent are due at MSGC by 11:59 pm, August 19, 2022
  • Proposals are due at MSGC by 11:59 pm, October 7, 2022
  • Applicant’s presentation to the Maine NASA EPSCoR TAC: TBD
  • Proposal due at NASA by 11:59 pm, November 16, 2022

Download a copy of the in-state solicitation – Maine NASA EPSCoR Research FY23 Competition Call for Proposals FINAL

Download a copy of the FY23 NASA EPSCoR Research NOFO. Make sure to read NASA’s priority research areas in the appendices.

Click here to view abstracts of funded NASA EPSCoR research projects in Maine