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Proposal Structure

Guidelines for Proposal Submission

Proposals should be of sufficient length to concisely describe the activity as well as convey the impact and proposed costs. Proposals should be 1-4 pages, roughly proportional to the amount of funding requested and the complexity of the proposal. Small requests are encouraged as a means to develop subsequent, more extensive programs. Proposals should address the key relevant points below, but can be very brief. Those for small workshops can be 1 page. Travel requests, for example, can be two brief paragraphs identifying proposed topics of research to be discussed, and individuals with which discussions will be held.

Proposals should contain the following:

  • Title
  • Contact Information: Name, institution, position and contact information for the person who will coordinate the grant. Other key personnel should also be listed with their institutions.
  • Type of Request: The typical categories of funding requests follow. Your activity may fall into more than one category, in which case you may identify more than one.
    • Proposal Development
    • Research Activities
    • Educational Activities
    • Workshops, Conferences and Speakers
  • Thrust Area: Indicate the thrust area for the proposal. Indicate primary and secondary if appropriate. (Multiscale Materials Understanding, Stockpile Stewardship, Threat Reduction, Energy Security, and Other Strategic Opportunities.)
  • Description of the Activity
  • Value of the Activity to the IMMS. Please refer to the IMMS objectives on the first page of this call for proposals. This can be combined with the description, but must be included.
  • Dates of the Activity. Please include the dates over which the activit(ies) will occur, and a proposed date for submitting a brief summary report. If possible, indicate the approximate dates, otherwise quarter estimates are acceptable.
  • Participation. For workshop, summer school, and conference proposals, potential collaborators and participants at other institutions should be identified. Additionally, a statement should be provided regarding how the activity will be advertised to broaden participation.
  • Cost. All proposals must break out the cost by the type of activity (above) and the fiscal year. Complex proposals should break out:
    • Materials and supplies
    • Equipment (over $5K purchase price)
    • Salaries
    • Travel Costs
    • Other Costs
    • Cost Share by Home Institution and/or Other Organizations (not required)

Research Proposals

It should be recognized that the majority of IMMS funds are reserved for the support of graduate students at UCSB or LANL. These funds can also be used for the support of mentoring activities by LANL staff. Smaller amounts of funds are available to support research activities at LANL (by students, post-docs or staff) or at UCSB (by post-docs and staff). Consequently, research proposals that are aligned with ongoing LANL projects are most likely to have the greatest impact and contribute most significantly to the student education and thesis development. In such cases, the direct funding of UCSB personnel from these LANL projects may be possible, particularly for graduate students, and these opportunities should be identified.

Research topics should build on areas of mutual interest to UCSB and LANL. Projects that build on unique capabilities available at either institution (e.g., neutron scattering, high performance computing) are particularly encouraged. Research projects in any area of multiscale materials studies will be considered, but particular topics of interest at this time are:

  • Design of foam materials with particular response characteristics
  • Composite material understanding, particularly understanding failure
  • Adhesion and interface characterization
  • Sensors for mechanical movement
  • Sensors for chemical or biological materials
  • Polymeric materials for fuel cell or solar energy applications
  • Application of soft materials for nanotechnology
  • Mechanical properties of multiblock and semicrystalline polymers
  • Connections between modeling methods at different length scales
  • Materials for hydrogen storage, generation or application
  • Characterization of material structure / response with neutron scattering

The Directors will assist with identifying contacts for these projects and can provide assistance for proposal development. Shorter term projects (one-quarter to one-year), that can be subsequently extended upon demonstrated success, are of particular interest. Proposals for periods longer than two years cannot be considered at this point in time.

The body of the proposal should include:

  • Future technical plans with technical milestones
  • Proposed UCSB and Los Alamos interactions and activities.
  • Budget
  • Funding for students and post docs that reflect the fact that student and post docs should plan on spending an integral average of 25% of their time working with their LANL co-advisors.
  • Travel
  • Special research needs, proposal preparation costs, and equipment costs
  • Current and pending funding for the PI’s, highlighting where it partially supports personnel involved in the project.
  • One page vitae for the PI's.
  • A statement of the current status of any PhD students funded by IMMS, i.e. dates they passed the prelim and qualifying exams and a projected date of completion of their degree.

The proposals will be evaluated for their technical and scientific merit, potential for stimulating UCSB/LANL collaborations, and their relevance to Los Alamos programmatic objectives by panels with representation from both LANL and UCSB. These panels will also be polled quarterly to identify arising strategic opportunities or desired development areas. Based on the recommendations of these panels, the Directors will allocate funding.

The LANL IMMS advisory panel consists of the following individuals:

In addition to the LANL Director [Edward Kober (Institutes Office): emk@lanl.gov], they can assist in the identification topics of interest and particular technical contacts.

The UCSB IMMS advisory panel will consist of representatives from the College of Engineering Dean’s office and representatives from the Departments of Materials, Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering and Chemistry, as appropriate to the technical area of the proposal.

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