The Defense Department announced plans May 8 to award $54.7 million to academic institutions to support the purchase of state-of-the-art research equipment.
The 190 awards to 100 academic institutions are being made under the Defense University Research Instrumentation Program that augments current university capabilities or develops new university capabilities to perform cutting-edge defense research.
“The Defense University Research Instrumentation Program is essential to the department’s investment in university research,” said Zachary J. Lemnios, assistant secretary of defense for research and engineering. “Instrumentation is critically needed to accelerate research progress and ensure world-class research training for the next generation of scientists and engineers in defense-critical fields.”
The Defense University Research Instrumentation Program supports DOD’s investment of more than $2 billion each year in basic, applied, and advanced research at universities. It meets a critical need by enabling university researchers to purchase scientific equipment costing $50,000 or more. Researchers generally have difficulty purchasing instruments costing that much under research contracts and grants. The awards announced today are expected to range from $50,000 to $1.9 million and average approximately $288,000.
These planned awards are the result of a merit competition for DURIP funding conducted by the Army Research Office, Office of Naval Research, and Air Force Office of Scientific Research. Each office requested proposals from university investigators conducting science and engineering research of importance to DOD. This includes research underpinning advances in surface chemistry and physics, computing and networks, electronics and electro optics, neuroscience, fluid dynamics and propulsion, robotics and autonomous systems, and ocean, environmental, and biological science and engineering.
In response to the requests, the research offices collectively received more than 700 proposals requesting $226 million in support for research equipment. All awards are subject to the successful completion of negotiations between DOD research offices and the academic institutions.
The list of winning proposals can be found at http://www.defense.gov/news/Fiscal_2012_DURIP_Winners_List.pdf.