NSF-DFG Lead Agency Activity in Measurements of Interfacial Systems at Scale with In-situ and Operando aNalysis

National Science Foundation (NSF)

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Deadline: The deadline for this grant has passed

Grant amount: US $200,000 - US $700,000

Fields of work: Chemistry Chemical Engineering Bioengineering Physics

Applicant type: Nonprofit, College / University, Museum/Library/Zoo

Funding uses: Research, Education / Outreach

Location of project: Germany, United States

Location of residency: United States


NOTE: An Expression of Interest (EOI) must be submitted by June 28, 2023, prior to the submission of a full proposal.All applications are due by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. 

Recognizing the importance of international collaborations in promoting scientific discoveries, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation, DFG) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on research cooperation. The MoU provides an overarching framework to enhance opportunities for collaborative activities between US and German research communities and sets out the principles by which jointly-supported activities might be developed. To facilitate the support of collaborative work between US researchers and their German counterparts under this MoU, the Division of Chemistry (CHE) and the Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems (CBET) at the NSF and the Divisions of Physics and Chemistry (PC) and Engineering Sciences (ING 1) at the DFG are pleased to announce a Lead Agency Opportunity in Measurements of Interfacial Systems at Scale with In-situ and Operando aNalysis. Interfacial processes are inherently complex given the rich mix of reaction, transport phenomena, and inter-phase gradients that often characterize such systems. There is a critical need for a new generation of operando and in-situ characterization systems and tools (e.g. imaging, spectroscopy, scattering and corresponding theoretical methods) to develop a molecular understanding. The solicitation encourages novel characterization of processes occurring at interfaces under system-realistic conditions that are relevant to solving to contemporary issues such as, climate solutions and sustainable chemical processes. Example topics include, but aren’t limited to,

  • understanding dynamic reaction and physical/chemical processes at atomic and molecular scales for heterogeneous catalysis, interfacial electrode processes, nanoparticle-fluid or substrate interactions, atomic and molecular separations, biological surface-environment interactions, wetting;
  • discovering new reaction pathways for interfacial chemical synthesis and functionalization;
  • understanding atomic and molecular mechanisms of sorption and transport processes in membranes and on nanomaterials;
  • understanding surface-templated synthesis or assembly of discrete structures, nucleation in crystallization processes; and
  • developing new methodologies for interfacial chemical characterization, particle production and aerosol behavior in processes.

The goal of this Lead Agency Opportunity is to reduce current barriers to working internationally by allowing US and German researchers to submit a single collaborative proposal that will undergo a single review process while funding organizations maintain budgetary control over their awards. Proposals eligible for funding consideration through this Lead Agency Opportunity in FY 2024 will need to have a research focus relevant to the topic areas identified above, within the scope of research supported through these divisions. 

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  • Non-profit, non-academic organizations:
    • Independent museums
    • observatories
    • research laboratories
    • professional societies and similar organizations located in the U.S. that are directly associated with educational or research activities.
  • Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs)
    • Two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members.
  • Special Instructions for International Branch Campuses of US IHEs: If the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a US institution of higher education (including through use of subawards and consultant arrangements), the proposer must explain the benefit(s) to the project of performance at the international branch campus, and justify why the project activities cannot be performed at the US campus.

National Science Foundation (NSF)

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This page was last reviewed May 22, 2023 and last updated May 22, 2023