Science Mission Directorate
NASA Research Announcement
Earth Science Applications: Water Resources
Released 18 February 2011
Amended 3 June 2011
Notice of Intent to Submit Proposal (NOI) Due 1 July 2011
Proposals Due 30 September 2011
The full text of this amended announcement is available in PDF format. Additional instructions for proposal document preparation and submission are included there. Some of the announcement materials are excerpted here with links added:
The NASA Earth Science Division, Applied Sciences Program solicits proposals that develop and demonstrate innovative and practical applications of Earth science observations, models, and research to support water resource decisions with an emphasis on drought prediction, assessment, adaptation, and mitigation.
This solicitation is specifically focused on the ability of organizations (public and private) to leverage NASA capabilities in order to advance their skill to monitor, identify, assess, predict, and respond to water resource deficits. Furthermore, this solicitation will seek the development of sustainable solutions that incorporate solid business/organization models that strive to incorporate performance metrics, fiscal realism of sustained operations, and the vision to meet the drought challenges of both today and in the future.
The Applied Sciences Program supports efforts to discover and demonstrate innovative and practical uses of Earth science data, knowledge, and technology. The Program funds applied science research and applications projects to enable near-term uses of Earth science, transition applied knowledge to public and private organizations, and integrate Earth science and satellite observations in organizations' decision-making and services. The projects are carried out in partnership with end-user organizations. The Program thus serves as a bridge between the data and knowledge generated by NASA Earth science and the information needs and decision-making of Government agencies, companies, regional associations, international organizations, not-for-profit organizations, and others. The Program allows and encourages private sector companies to submit proposals and/or be involved in project teams. For more information visit the Applied Sciences Program website.
The Applied Sciences Program seeks projects that pursue innovative uses and integration of an array of Earth science results and develop and demonstrate improvements to decision-making. NASA Earth science results can include Earth science measurements (particularly NASA spacecraft observations, both in orbit and planned), outputs and predictive capabilities from Earth science models (especially ones that use NASA spacecraft observations or are NASA-sponsored), algorithms, visualizations, new knowledge about the Earth system, and other techniques and geosciences products. Proposals may blend commercial remote sensing and geospatial information with NASA Earth science measurements to integrate into and improve decision-making.
The Applied Sciences Program is currently focused on four of the nine U.S. Group on Earth Observations (USGEO) Societal Benefit Areas (SBA): Water Resources, Health and Air Quality, Ecological Forecasting, and Disasters. The Applied Sciences Program Water Resources application area promotes the routine integration of Earth science into water resource management for sustainable use. The Water Resources application area primarily focuses on themes of drought, stream flow, flood forecasting, water supply and irrigation, water quality, and climate impacts on water resources.
The objective of this solicitation is to select applied research and applications projects in the area of water resources with a focus on drought-related topics and drought management solutions. Successful projects will advance organizations' use and application of Earth science observations and models in decision-making associated with water resource management against drought. The projects should include all relevant NASA satellite mission observations and can include data products from non-NASA satellites, including foreign satellites and commercial products if used in conjunction with some NASA capabilities.
This solicitation expects strong partnerships between the science/technology organizations and the management/policy decision-making organizations. Solicitations that target international development applications are encouraged to team with U.S. business/management and policy organizations (e.g., DoS, USAID, DoD, USDA, or other U.S. agency with a foreign service mandate and appropriation) and/or international financial institutions, such as The World Bank. International development proposers are also referred to the SERVIR Applied Sciences Team (Appendix A.36).
This solicitation seeks proposals that use NASA Earth science products and information to affect water resource management and policy decisions aligned with one or more of the following topics:
This solicitation is strategically interested in proposals that utilize, among other capabilities, observations from the thermal bands of the electromagnetic spectrum for water resource decision making. The Program expects to support projects across a range of risks and a range of expected returns and rewards.
- Drought prediction, assessment, adaptation, and mitigation in support of food security/efficiency;
- Drought prediction, assessment, adaptation, and mitigation in support of energy security/efficiency;
- Drought prediction, assessment, adaptation, and mitigation in support of natural resource conservation;
- Drought prediction, assessment, adaptation, and mitigation in support of household, municipal, industrial, and in-stream demands for water (both quantity and quality); and
- Access and availability of actionable drought information.
This solicitation is seeking Feasibility-to-Decisions projects. The objective of Feasibility- to-Decisions solicitations is to identify, prioritize, and implement high-reward applications ideas with committed partners. Feasibility-to-Decisions projects are one-year awards (Feasibility-Stage 1). Based on an evaluation at the end of year one, the Grantee MAY be selected to continue work in years two through four (Decisions-Stage 2). An assessment of Feasibility-Stage 1 progress reports, annual report, partner commitment, and in-person presentations will be used to approve Decisions-Stage 2 award continuations.
The Applied Sciences Program strongly encourages projects to use an array of Earth science research results, including multiple spacecraft observations, geophysical parameters, and Earth system models, and predictive capabilities. The Program encourages project teams to consider and use products from recently-launched NASA missions, as well as simulated products from upcoming, planned missions such as SMAP, LDCM, NPP, GPM, GRACE-FO, SWOT.
The Program encourages multi-organizational and multidisciplinary teams. The Program encourages teams to consider having Principal Investigators that are from or are very familiar with the needs of the end-users and decision-making organization(s). If the project requires that leadership be split between individuals at two institutions (one to lead technical aspects of the project and one to lead the decision-making and project management aspects of the project) the award can be split, with separate grants to the two institutions. The Program encourages early interaction with personnel knowledgeable of NASA science, model, and sensors (e.g., science teams and instrument scientists) to understand capabilities and limitations.Additional instructions and guidance for proposal document preparation and submission, as well as contact information for the responsible NASA official, are included in the full text of the announcement (pdf).