University Research and Engagement Program (UREP)

University Consortium Research Opportunity

Request for Proposal FAQs

5 November 2021

Citizenship/Who Can Participate Questions
1. Is the solicitation open to permanent residents?

Principal Investigators and Co-Principal Investigators must be U.S. citizens.

2. Can US persons (green cards) serve as PI or Co-PI?

Principal Investigators and Co-Principal Investigators must be U.S. citizens.

3. Do the students have to be US citizens?

US citizenship is not required for students to participate, however it is required to attend enrichment activities held at Kirtland Air Force Base (KAFB).

4. If the PI and Co-PI are U.S. citizens, can they collaborate with individuals as co-authors from other countries?

Yes, proposers may collaborate with foreign institutions and researchers as long as the PI/Co-PI are U.S. citizens and work is performed in the U.S.

5. Is there any role in which a Green Card Holder could be listed on a proposal? Is it allowed to have a non-US citizen listed as Senior Personnel/Co-I when proposing for this solicitation?

A Green Card Holder can have any role in the effort except for PI or Co-PI.

6. Can a person (us citizen) with (or without) a master’s degree, currently pursuing PhD be Co-PI in the proposals?

Yes

Clerical/Eligibility Questions
1. What is the expected start date for the projects to begin?

The period of performance will commence upon subagreement award date, tentatively February 2022.

2. Regarding the 500-word limit. Is that just for the description or for the entirety of the LOI?

Yes, for the entire LOI. The Verification Letter is excluded from the word count limit.

3. Is a PhD student without a master’s degree also allowed to serve as a co-PI?

Yes, a Ph.D. student without a master’s degree may serve as co-PI.

4. Can one person serve as the PI in one proposal and a co-PI in another proposal? Can a PI or Co-PI be on more than one proposal?

Yes.

5. Can only one submission originate from any one university?

Each proposal should address only one research topic, but multiple proposals from an institution or PI are acceptable.

6. Is there a specific template for either the LOI or the Technical Proposal?

No, but for the Technical Proposal please reference page 13 of the RFP on our website under Announcement Documents.

7. Should a Cover Letter be included with the LOI? So, the LOI submission would contain three documents, a Cover Letter, the LOI itself, and the Verification Letter?

No, the Cover Letter is not required for the LOI submission. Include only the LOI template submitted on your institution’s letterhead and the Verification Letter.

8. Should each proposal only address one of the listed topics?

Yes, each proposal should address only one topic. Multiple proposals from an institution or PI are acceptable.

9. Will there be requirements on how much of our proposed efforts must be student-led research, in contrast to faculty and staff led research?

There is no set limit on the percentage of research led by students, staff, or faculty. As a reminder, this opportunity aims to provide undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellows with authentic research opportunities.

10. Can you partner with other institutions or organizations for the proposal?

Yes, and as a reminder, this opportunity aims to provide undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellows with authentic research opportunities

11. Can small businesses participate in this program in collaboration with university partners?

Yes, if students are heavily involved. Please remember that this opportunity aims to provide undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellows with authentic research opportunities.

12. Is eligibility limited solely to “Universities and Non-profit Research Institutions” (URI)? If a URI proposes, how much can they subcontract out to industry for services needed to support a proposal?

Yes, eligibility is limited solely to Universities and Non-profit Research Institutions. Eligible proposers may subcontract out to industry for services needed to support a proposal, with no preset limit. As a reminder, this opportunity aims to provide undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellows with authentic research opportunities.

13. As a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), are we eligible to propose to this solicitation (with university graduate and undergraduate support)? Or does it need to come from the University itself (possibly with us as supporting team members)?

UARCs would be considered Non-profit Research Institutions and would be eligible to apply. As a reminder, this opportunity aims to provide undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellows with authentic research opportunities.

Research Topic Questions
1. Can hyperspace challenge application proposal idea also be applied as the UREP application? In other words, can they be same?

Yes!

2. If we propose the development of ground testing technology or testbed, would that be considered responsive to the call?

Yes, the proposed effort could focus on ground-based testing or a testbed if it supports one of the six topic areas and the proposal is responsive to the merit review criteria in the RFP.

3. In regard to research topic #6, is there a publicly available space debris catalog/data repository that we could use when developing our proposal? Could you please provide me with more information about this repository, or contact information to the team/person maintaining such a catalog?

There are open-source versions of these databases, as well as proprietary and government-limited versions. Proposers should not expect to receive a government-limited database of space objects as part of their proposed efforts.

4. What is or is not included in the On-Orbit Servicing, Assembly, and Manufacturing (OSAM) topic?

YThe topic for OSAM does include the desire to assemble or manufacture large structures in space - structures so large that they cannot be folded up and launched from the ground. Such in-space assembly or in-space manufacturing might allow very large optics, very large solar arrays, huge structures for solar power beaming, or other applications.es

Budget Related Questions
1. Does the budget allow to pay the travel expenses and an honorarium to an industrial advisor for participating in a project review meeting?

Yes, paying for the support of an industrial advisor is allowed if the effort makes sense in the overall context of the proposal. As a reminder, this opportunity aims to provide undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellows with authentic research opportunities.

2. Is the 350k budget cap setup for the TOTAL award of this grant, or for each of the years of the proposal (i.e. are the proposers allowed to prepare their budgets for 2 years at 175k max. per year = 350k total, or for 2 years at 350k max. per year = 700k total)?

Proposals should not exceed two years in total period of performance nor $350k.

Contact AFRL-UREP@usra.edu for questions.