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Notice

Small Grants Programs and Precision Measurement Grants Program; Availability of Funds

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

National Institute of Standards and Technology, Commerce.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announces that the following programs are soliciting applications for financial assistance for FY 2006: (1) The Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program; (2) the Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory Grants Program; (3) the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program; (4) the Physics Laboratory Grants Program; (5) the Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory Grants Program; (6) the Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program; (7) the Fire Research Grants Program; (8) the Information Technology Laboratory Grants Program; and (9) the Precision Measurement Grants Program. Each program will only consider applications that are within the scientific scope of the program as described in this notice and in the detailed program descriptions found in the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) announcement for these programs. Prior to preparation of a proposal, it is strongly suggested that potential applicants contact the Program Manager for the appropriate field of research, as specified in the FFO announcement found at http://www.grants.gov, for clarification of the program objectives and to determine whether their proposal is responsive to this notice.

DATES:

See below.

ADDRESSES:

See below.

End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Name and Number: Measurement and Engineering Research and Standards—11.609

Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory (EEEL) Grants Program

Program Description: The Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory (EEEL) Grants Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements for the development of fundamental electrical metrology and of metrology supporting industry and government agencies in the broad areas of Start Printed Page 76242semiconductors, electronic instrumentation, radio-frequency technology, optoelectronics, magnetics, video, electronic commerce as applied to electronic products and devices, the transmission and distribution of electrical power, national electrical standards (fundamental, generally quantum-based physical standards), and law enforcement standards.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m., Eastern Standard Time on June 30, 2006.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Sheilda Bryner, Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8100, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8100. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Sheilda Bryner, Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8100, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8100, Tel.: (301) 975-2220, Fax: (301) 975-4091. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: In fiscal year 2005, the EEEL Grants Program made 13 new awards, totaling $866,613. The amount available each year fluctuates considerably based on programmatic needs. Individual awards are expected to range between $5,000 and $150,000.

For the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to three years. When a proposal for a multi-year award is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant, (i.e., the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized by 15 U.S.C. 272(b) and (c), the NIST Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: For the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program, proposals will be reviewed in a three-step process. First, the EEEL Grants Coordinator, or the Deputy Director of EEEL, will determine the compatibility of the applicant's proposal with EEEL Program Areas and the relevance to the objectives of the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program, described in the Program Description section above. If it is determined that the proposal is incomplete or non-responsive to the scope of the stated objectives, the proposal will not be reviewed for technical merit. If it is determined that all funds available for the EEEL Grants Program for the given fiscal year have been exhausted, the proposal will not be reviewed for technical merit. Proposers may contact EEEL at (301) 975-2220 to find out if funds have been exhausted for the fiscal year. EEEL will also post a notice on its Web site, http://www.eeel.nist.gov/​eeel_​grants, when funds are exhausted for the fiscal year. EEEL will notify proposers in writing if their proposals are not reviewed for technical merit.

Second, proposals will be distributed for technical review by the EEEL Grants Coordinator, or other technical professionals familiar with the programs of the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory, to the appropriate Division or Office based on technical area. At least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular scientific area described in the Program Description section above that the proposal addresses will conduct a technical review of each proposal, based on the evaluation criteria described above. If non-Federal reviewers are used, the reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

Reviews will be conducted on a quarterly basis, and all proposals received during the quarter will be ranked based on the reviewers' scores.

Third, the Division Chief or Office Director will make application selections. In making application selections, the Division Chief or Office Director will take into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, the availability of funding, and relevance to the objectives of the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program, as described in the Program Description section above. The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decision of the Grants Officer is final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program, the evaluation criteria and weights to be used by the technical reviewers in evaluating the proposals are as follows:

Proposal addresses specific program objectives as described in this notice (25%)

Proposal provides evidence of applicant's expertise in relevant technical area (20%)

Proposal offers innovative approach (20%)

Proposal provides realistic schedule with defined milestones (20%) Start Printed Page 76243

Proposal provides adequate rationale for budget (15%)

Cost Share Requirements: The Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory (MEL) Grants Program

Program Description: The Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory (MEL) Grants Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in the following fields of research: Dimensional Metrology for Manufacturing, Mechanical Metrology for Manufacturing, Intelligent Systems, and Information Systems Integration for Applications in Manufacturing.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between July 1, 2006 and September 30, 2006 may be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation in the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Mrs. Mary Lou Norris, Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8200, Building 220, Room B322, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8200. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Mrs. Mary Lou Norris, Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8200, Building 220, Room B322, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8200, Tel: (301) 975-3400, E-mail: mnorris@nist.gov. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: In fiscal year 2005, the MEL Grants Program funded 11 new awards, totaling $834,342. In fiscal year 2006 the MEL Grants Program anticipates funding of approximately $500,000, including new awards and continuing projects. Individual awards are expected to range from approximately $25,000 to $300,000.

For the MEL Grants Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to five years. When a proposal for a multi-year award is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the MEL program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant, (i.e., the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized under 15 U.S.C. 272(b) and (c), the MEL conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The MEL Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: For the MEL Grants Program responsive proposals will be assigned, as received on a rolling basis, to the most appropriate area for review. At least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular scientific area described in the Program Description section above that the proposal addresses will conduct a technical review of proposals based on the evaluation criteria. If non-Federal reviewers are used, the reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus. The Division Chief or Laboratory Director will make application selections. In making application selections, the Division Chief or Laboratory Director will take into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, the availability of funds, and relevance to the objectives of the MEL Grants Program. These objectives are described above in the Program Description section above. The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decision of the Grants Officer is final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The original application will be returned to the applicant.

Evaluation Criteria: For the MEL Grants Program, the evaluation criteria the technical reviewers will use in evaluating the proposals are as follows:

1. Rationality. Reviewers will consider the coherence of the applicant's approach and the extent to which the proposal effectively addresses scientific and technical issues.

2. Technical Merit of Contribution. Reviewers will consider the potential technical effectiveness of the proposal and the value it would contribute to the field of manufacturing engineering and metrology research.

3. Qualifications of Technical Personnel. Reviewers will consider the professional accomplishments, skills, and training of the proposed personnel to perform the work in the project.

4. Resources Availability. Reviewers will consider the extent to which the proposer has access to the necessary facilities and overall support to accomplish project objectives.

Each of these factors will be given equal weight in the evaluation process.

Cost Share Requirements: The MEL Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program

Program Description: The Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory (CSTL) Grants Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in the following fields of measurement science research, focused on reference methods, reference materials and reference data: Biotechnology, Process Measurements, Surface and Start Printed Page 76244Microanalysis Science, Physical and Chemical Properties, and Analytical Chemistry.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between July 1, 2006 and September 30, 2006 may be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation in the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Dr. William F. Koch, Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8300, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8300. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Dr. William F. Koch, Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8300, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8300, Tel (301) 975-8301, E-Mail: william.koch@nist.gov. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: No funds have been set aside specifically for support of the CSTL Grants Program. The availability of funds depends upon actual authorization of funds and other costs expected to be incurred by individual divisions within the laboratory. Where funds are identified as available for grants, those funds will be awarded to highly ranked proposals as determined by the process described in this notice.

In fiscal year 2005, the CSTL Grants Program funded 10 new awards, totaling $830,254. In fiscal year 2006, the CSTL Grants Program anticipates funding of approximately $500,000. Individual awards are expected to range from approximately $5,000 to $100,000.

For the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grant Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to three years. When a proposal for a multi-year award is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant, (i.e. the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized under 15 U.S.C. 272(b) and (c), the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: For the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program, proposals will be reviewed in a three-step process. First, the Deputy Director of CSTL, or appropriate CSTL Division Chief, will determine the compatibility of the applicant's proposal with CSTL Program Areas and the relevance to the objectives of the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program, described in the Program Description section above. If it is determined that the proposal is incomplete or non-responsive to the scope of the stated objectives, the proposal will not be reviewed for technical merit.

Second, at least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular measurement science area described in the section above that the proposal addresses will conduct a technical review of each proposal, based on the evaluation criteria described below. Reviews will be conducted on a quarterly basis, subject to the availability of funds, and all responsive, complete proposals received and reviewed since the last quarter will be ranked based on the reviewers' scores. If non-Federal reviewers are used, the reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

Third, the Division Chief will make application selections, taking into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, the availability of funds, and the relevance of the proposal to the program objectives described in the Program Description section above.

The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decisions of the Grants Officer are final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program, the evaluation criteria the technical reviewers will use in evaluating the proposals are as follows:

1. Rationality. Reviewers will consider the coherence of the applicant's approach and the extent to which the proposal effectively addresses scientific and technical issues.

2. Qualifications of Technical Personnel. Reviewers will consider the professional accomplishments, skills, and training of the proposed personnel to perform the work in the project.

3. Resources Availability. Reviewers will consider the extent to which the proposer has access to the necessary facilities and overall support to accomplish project objectives.

4. Technical Merit of Contribution. Reviewers will consider the potential technical effectiveness of the proposal and the value it would contribute to the field of measurement science, especially as it pertains to reference methods, reference materials and reference data in Chemical Science and Technology.

Each of these factors will be given equal weight in the evaluation process. Start Printed Page 76245

Cost Share Requirements: The Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

Physics Laboratory Grants Program

Program Description: The Physics Laboratory (PL) Grants Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in the following fields of research: Electron and Optical Physics, Atomic Physics, Optical Technology, Ionizing Radiation, Time and Frequency, and Quantum Physics.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m., Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between July 1, 2006 and September 30, 2006 may be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation in the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Ms. Anita Sweigert, Physics Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8400, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8400. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Ms. Anita Sweigert, Physics Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8400, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8400, Tel (301) 975-4200, E-Mail: anita.sweigert@nist.gov. It is strongly suggested to first confirm the program objectives with the Program Manager prior to preparing a detailed proposal. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: In fiscal year 2005, the PL Grants Program funded 21 new awards, totaling $2,274,427. In fiscal year 2006, the PL Grants Program anticipates funding of approximately $1,700,000, including new awards and continuing projects. Funding availability will be apportioned by quarter. Individual awards are expected to range from approximately $5,000 to $300,000.

For the Physics Laboratory Grants Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to five years. When a proposal for a multi-year project is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the Physics Laboratory program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant (i.e., the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized under 15 U.S.C. 272(b) and (c), the Physics Laboratory conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The Physics Laboratory Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: For the Physics Laboratory Grants Program, responsive proposals will be considered as follows: First, at least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular scientific area described in the proposal will conduct a technical review of each proposal, based on the evaluation criteria described below. Reviews will be conducted on a monthly basis within each division of the Physics Laboratory, and all proposals received during the month will be ranked based on the reviewers' scores. If non-Federal reviewers are used, reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

Next, the Division Chief will make final application selections, taking into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, including rank; the compilation of a slate that, when taken as a whole, is likely to best further the program interests described in the Program Description section above; and the availability of funds.

The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible.

Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award.

The decisions of the Grants Officer are final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the Physics Laboratory Grants Program, the evaluation criteria the technical reviewers will use in evaluating the proposals are as follows:

1. Rationality. Reviewers will consider the coherence of the applicant's approach and the extent to which the proposal effectively addresses scientific and technical issues.

2. Qualifications of Technical Personnel. Reviewers will consider the professional accomplishments, skills, and training of the proposed personnel to perform the work in the project.

3. Resources Availability. Reviewers will consider the extent to which the proposer has access to the necessary facilities and overall support to accomplish project objectives.

4. Technical Merit of Contribution. Reviewers will consider the potential technical effectiveness of the proposal and the value it would contribute to the field of physics.

Each of these factors will be given equal weight in the evaluation process.

Cost Share Requirements: The Physics Laboratory Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

MSEL Grants Program

Program Description: The Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory (MSEL) Grants Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in the following fields of research: Ceramics; Metallurgy; Polymer Sciences; Materials Reliability; and Neutron Scattering Research and Spectroscopy.

Start Printed Page 76246

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between July 1, 2006 and September 30, 2006 may be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation in the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Dr. Stephen W. Freiman, Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8500, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8500. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Dr. Stephen W. Freiman, Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8500, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8500, Tel: (301) 975-5658, E-mail: stephen.freiman@nist.gov. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@nist.gov.

Funding Availability: In fiscal year 2005, the MSEL Grants Program funded 36 new awards, totaling $4,966,802. In fiscal year 2006, the MSEL Grants Program anticipates funding of approximately $4,500,000, including new awards and continuing projects. Most grants and cooperative agreements are expected to be in the $25,000 to $100,000 per year range.

For the MSEL Grants Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to three years. When a proposal for a multi-year award is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the MSEL program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant, (i.e., the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized under 15 U.S.C. 272 (b) and (c), the MSEL conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The MSEL Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: For the MSEL Grants Program proposals will be reviewed in a two-step process. First, at least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular scientific area described in the Program Description section above that the proposal addresses will conduct a technical review of proposals, as they are received on a rolling basis, based on the evaluation criteria. If non-Federal reviewers are used, the reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus. Second, the Division Chief or Center Director or Laboratory Deputy Director will make application selections. In making application selections, the Division Chief or Center Director or Laboratory Deputy Director will take into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, the availability of funds, and relevance to the objectives of the MSEL Grants Program, described above in the Program Description section. The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decision of the Grants Officer is final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the MSEL Grants Program, the evaluation criteria the technical reviewers will use in evaluating the proposals are as follows:

1. Rationality. Reviewers will consider the coherence of the applicant's approach and the extent to which the proposal effectively addresses scientific and technical issues.

2. Qualifications of Technical Personnel. Reviewers will consider the professional accomplishments, skills, and training of the proposed personnel to perform the work in the project.

3. Resources Availability. Reviewers will consider the extent to which the proposer has access to the necessary facilities and overall support to accomplish project objectives.

4. Technical Merit of Contribution. Reviewers will consider the potential technical effectiveness of the proposal and the value it would contribute to the field of materials science and engineering and neutron research.

Each of these factors will be given equal weight in the evaluation process.

Cost Share Requirements: The MSEL Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program

Program Description: The Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in the following fields of research: Structures, Construction Metrology and Automation, Inorganic Materials, Polymeric Materials, HVAC & R Equipment Performance, Mechanical Systems and Controls, Heat Transfer and Alternative Energy Systems, Computer Integrated Building Processes, and Indoor Air Quality and Ventilation.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between July 1, 2006 and September 30, 2006 may be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation in the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Karen Perry, Building and Fire Research Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8602, Start Printed Page 76247Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8602. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Karen Perry, Building and Fire Research Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8602, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8602, Tel.: (301) 975-5910, Fax: (301) 975-4032, http://www.bfrl.nist.gov. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: In fiscal year 2005, the Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program funded 4 new awards, totaling $603,964. No funds have been set aside specifically for support of the Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program. The availability of funds depends upon actual authorization of funds and other costs expected to be incurred by the individual divisions. The amount available each year fluctuates considerably based on programmatic needs. Individual awards are expected to range between $5,000 and $150,000.

For the Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to three years. When a proposal for a multi-year award is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant (i.e., the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized by 15 U.S.C. 272(b) and (c), the NIST Building and Fire Research Laboratory conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: All applications received in response to this announcement will be reviewed to determine whether or not they are complete and responsive. Incomplete or non-responsive applications will not be reviewed for technical merit. The Program will retain one copy of each non-responsive application for three years for recordkeeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Responsive proposals will be forwarded to the appropriate Division Chief, who will assign them to appropriate reviewers. At least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular scientific area described in the Program Description section above that the proposal addresses will conduct a technical review of each proposal, based on the evaluation criteria described below. When non-Federal reviewers are used, reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

Reviews will be conducted no less than once per quarter, and all proposals since the last review session will be ranked based on the reviewers' scores.

Next, the Division Chief, Laboratory Deputy Director, or Laboratory Director will make application selections. In making application selections, the Division Chief, Laboratory Deputy Director, or Laboratory Director will take into consideration the results of the evaluations, the scores of the reviewers, the availability of funds, and relevance to the objectives of the Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program, as described in the Program Description section above.

The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The award decision of the Grants Officer is final. Applicants should allow up to 90 days processing time.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: The Divisions will score proposals based on the following criteria and weights:

1. Technical quality of the research. Reviewers will assess the rationality, innovation and imagination of the proposal and the fit to NIST's in-house building research programs. (0-35 points)

2. Potential impact of the results. Reviewers will assess the potential impact and the technical application of the results to our in-house programs and the building industry. (0-25 points)

3. Staff and institution capability to do the work. Reviewers will evaluate the quality of the facilities and experience of the staff to assess the likelihood of achieving the objective of the proposal. (0-20 points)

4. Match of budget to proposed work. Reviewers will assess the budget against the proposed work to ascertain the reasonableness of the request. (0-20 points)

Cost Share Requirements: The Building Research Grants and Cooperative Agreements Program does not require any matching funds.

Fire Research Grants Program

Program Description: The Fire Research Grants Program will provide funding for innovative ideas in the fire research area generated by the proposal writer, who chooses the topic and approach.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between May 1, 2006 and September 30, 2006 will be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation, but if selected, proposals may be funded in Start Printed Page 76248the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Ms. Wanda Duffin-Ricks, Building and Fire Research Laboratory (BFRL), National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8660, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8660. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Ms. Wanda Duffin-Ricks, Building and Fire Research Laboratory (BFRL), National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8660, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8660, Tel: (301) 975-6863, E-mail: wanda.duffin@nist.gov, Web site: http://www.bfrl.nist.gov. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: For the Fire Research Grants Program, the annual budget is approximately $1.0 to $1.5 million. Because of commitments for the support of multi-year projects and because proposals may have been deferred from the previous year's competition, only a portion of the budget is available to fund applications received in response to this notice. Most grants and cooperative agreements are in the $25,000 to $125,000 per year range, with a maximum requested duration of three years. In fiscal year 2005, the Fire Research Grants Program funded 8 new awards, totaling $620,224.

For the Fire Research Grants Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to three years. When a proposal for a multi-year project is approved, funding will normally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, DoC has no obligation to provide any additional future funding in connection with that award. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent on satisfactory progress, continuing relevance to the mission of the NIST Fire Research Program, and the availability of funds.

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized by 15 U.S.C. 278f, the NIST Building and Fire Research Laboratory conducts directly and through grants and cooperative agreements, a basic and applied fire research program.

End Authority

Eligibility: The Fire Research Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: Prospective proposers are encouraged to contact the group leaders listed in the FFO announcement to determine the responsiveness of the proposal and compliance with program objectives prior to preparation of a detailed proposal. Responsive proposals will be assigned, as received on a rolling basis, to the most appropriate group. Proposals are evaluated for technical merit based on the evaluation criteria described above by at least three reviewers chosen from NIST professionals, technical experts from other interested government agencies, and experts from the fire research community at large. When non-Federal reviewers are used, reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus. The group leaders will make funding recommendations to the Division Chief based on the technical evaluation score and the relationship of the work proposed to the objectives of the program.

In making application selections, the Division Chief will take into consideration the results of the evaluations, the scores of the reviewers, the group leader's recommendation, the availability of funds, and relevance to the objectives of the Fire Research Grants Program, as described in the Program Description section above. The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The award decision of the Grants Officer is final. Applicants should allow up to 90 days processing time.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the Fire Research Grants Program, the technical evaluation criteria are as follows:

1. Technical quality of the research. Reviewers will assess the rationality, innovation and imagination of the proposal. (0-35 points).

2. Potential impact of the results. Reviewers will assess the potential impact and the technical application of the results to the fire safety community. (0-25 points)

3. Staff and institution capability to do the work. Reviewers will evaluate the quality of the facilities and experience of the staff to assess the likelihood of achieving the objective of the proposal. (0-20 points)

4. Match of budget to proposed work. Reviewers will assess the budget against the proposed work to ascertain the reasonableness of the request. (0-20 points)

Cost Share Requirements: The Fire Research Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) Grants Program

Program Description: The Information Technology Laboratory Grants Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in the broad areas of mathematical and computational sciences, advanced network technologies, and information access. Specific objectives of interest in these areas of research include: Quantum information theory, computational materials science, computational nanotechnology, mathematical knowledge management, visual data analysis, verification and validation of computer models, software testing, human-robot interaction, human factors in voting systems, security for the IPv6 transition from and coexistence with IPv6, and device mobility among heterogeneous networks. For details on these various activities, please see the Information Technology Laboratory Web site at http://www.itl.nist.gov. Additionally, the ITL Grant Program will provide grants and cooperative agreements in support of conferences, workshops, and other technical research groups that focus on trends and future focus areas of information technology.

DATES:

All applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on September 30, 2006. Proposals received between July 1, 2006 and September 30, Start Printed Page 762492006 will be processed and considered for funding under this solicitation, but if selected, proposals may be funded in the next fiscal year, subject to the availability of funds.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications must be submitted to: Kirk Dohne, Information Technology Laboratory (ITL), National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8900, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8900. Electronic applications and associated proposal information should be uploaded to grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Program questions should be addressed to Kirk Dohne, Information Technology Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8900, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8200, Tel: (301) 975-8480, E-mail: kirk.dohne@nist.gov; Fax: (301) 975-2378, Web site: http://www.itl.nist.gov. It is strongly suggested to first confirm the program objectives with the Program Manager prior to preparing a detailed proposal. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be addressed to: Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division, (301) 975-6328; joyce.brigham@nist.gov. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: In fiscal year 2005, the Information Technology Laboratory did not participate in the grants program, therefore no historical data is available for that period. No funds have been set aside specifically for support of the Information Technology Laboratory Grants Program. The availability of funds depends upon actual authorization of funds and other costs expected to be incurred by the individual divisions. The amount available each year fluctuates considerably based on programmatic needs. Individual awards are expected to range between $10,000 and $150,000.

For the Information Technology Laboratory Grants Program, proposals will be considered for research projects from one to three years. When a proposal for a multi-year award is approved, funding will generally be provided for only the first year of the program. If an application is selected for funding, NIST has no obligation to provide any additional funding in connection with that award. Continuation of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of NIST. Funding for each subsequent year of a multi-year proposal will be contingent upon satisfactory progress, continued relevance to the mission of the Information Technology Laboratory Grants Program, and the availability of funds. The multi-year awards must have scopes of work that can be easily separated into annual increments of meaningful work that represent solid accomplishments if prospective funding is not made available to the applicant (i.e., the scopes of work for each funding period must produce identifiable and meaningful results in and of themselves).

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: As authorized under 15 U.S.C. 272(b) and (c), the ITL conducts a basic and applied research program directly and through grants and cooperative agreements to eligible recipients.

End Authority

Eligibility: The ITL Grants Program is open to institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local, and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; and international organizations.

Review and Selection Process: For the Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) Grants Program, proposals will be reviewed in a three-step process. First, the Deputy Director of ITL, or appropriate designee, will determine the compatibility of the applicant's proposal with ITL Program Areas and the relevance to the objectives of the ITL Grants Program, described in the Program Description section above. If it is determined that the proposal is incomplete or non-responsive to the scope of the stated objectives, the proposal will not be reviewed for technical merit. If a proposal is determined to be incomplete or non-responsive, or if it is determined that all available funds have been exhausted, the proposal will not be reviewed for technical merit. Proposers may contact ITL at (301) 975-8480 to find out if funds have been exhausted for the fiscal year. ITL will also post a notice on its Web site, www.itl.nist.gov, when funds are exhausted for the fiscal year. ITL will notify proposers in writing if their proposals are not reviewed for technical merit.

Second, at least three independent, objective individuals knowledgeable about the particular measurement science area described in the section above that the proposal addresses will conduct a technical review of each proposal, based on the evaluation criteria described above. Reviews will be conducted on a quarterly basis, and all responsive, complete proposals received and reviewed since the last quarter will be ranked based on the reviewers' scores. If non-Federal reviewers are used, the reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

Third, the Division Chief, in accord with the Director of ITL, will make application selections, taking into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, the availability of funds, and the relevance of the proposal to the program objectives described in the Program Description section above.

The final approval of selected applications and award of financial assistance will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decisions of the Grants Officer are final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the ITL Grants Program, the evaluation criteria the technical reviewers will use in evaluating the proposals are as follows:

1. Rationality. Reviewers will consider the coherence of the applicant's approach and the extent to which the proposal effectively addresses scientific and technical issues.

2. Technical Merit of Contribution. Reviewers will consider the potential technical effectiveness of the proposal and the value it would contribute to the field of manufacturing engineering and metrology research.

3. Qualifications of Technical Personnel. Reviewers will consider the professional accomplishments, skills, and training of the proposed personnel to perform the work in the project.

4. Resources Availability. Reviewers will consider the extent to which the proposer has access to the necessary facilities and overall support to accomplish project objectives. Start Printed Page 76250

Each of these factors will be given equal weight in the evaluation process.

Precision Measurement Grants Program

Program Description: The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announces that the Precision Measurement Grants Program is soliciting applications for financial assistance for FY 2005. The Precision Measurement Grants Program is seeking proposals for significant research in the field of fundamental measurement or the determination of fundamental constants. As part of its research program, since 1970 NIST has awarded Precision Measurement Grants primarily to universities and colleges so that faculty may conduct significant research in the field of fundamental measurement or the determination of fundamental constants. NIST sponsors these grants and cooperative agreements primarily to encourage basic, measurement-related research in universities and colleges and other research laboratories and to foster contacts between NIST scientists and those faculty members of academic institutions and other researchers who are actively engaged in such work. The Precision Measurement Grants are also intended to make it possible for researchers to pursue new ideas for which other sources of support may be difficult to find. There is some latitude in research topics that will be considered under the Precision Measurement Grants Program. The key requirement is that the proposed project support NIST's ongoing work in the field of basic measurement science.

DATES:

Abbreviated proposals must be received at the address listed below no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on February 3, 2006. Proposals received after this deadline will be returned with no further consideration. Finalists will be selected by approximately March 23, 2006, and will be requested to submit full proposals to NIST. All full proposals, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on May 5, 2006.

ADDRESSES:

Abbreviated proposals and paper applications must be submitted to: Dr. Peter J. Mohr; Manager, NIST Precision Measurement Grants Program; National Institute of Standards and Technology; 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8420; Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8420. Electronic final proposals should be uploaded to Grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) Notice at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. Technical questions should be addressed to: Dr. Peter J. Mohr at the address listed in the Addresses section above, or at Tel: (301) 975-3217; E-mail: mohr@nist.gov. Grants Administration questions should be addressed to: Grants and Agreements Management Division; National Institute of Standards and Technology; 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 1650; Gaithersburg, MD 20899-1650; Tel: (301) 975-6328. For assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability: Applicants should propose multi-year projects for up to three years at no more than $50,000 per year. NIST anticipates spending $100,000 this year for two new grants at $50,000 each for the first year of the research projects. NIST may award both, one, or neither of these new awards. Second and third year funding will be at the discretion of NIST, based on satisfactory performance, continuing relevance to program objectives, and the availability of funds.

Start Authority

Statutory Authority: The authority for the Precision Measurement Grants Program is as follows: As authorized by 15 U.S.C. 272 (b) and (c), NIST conducts directly, and supports through grants, a basic and applied research program in the general area of fundamental measurement and the determination of fundamental constants of nature.

End Authority

Eligibility: Eligible applicants are institutions of higher education; hospitals; non-profit organizations; commercial organizations; state, local and Indian tribal governments; foreign governments; organizations under the jurisdiction of foreign governments; international organizations; and Federal agencies with appropriate legal authority.

Review and Selection Process: All abbreviated proposals and full applications received in response to this announcement will be reviewed to determine whether or not they are complete and responsive to the scope of the stated objectives for each program. Incomplete or non-responsive abbreviated proposals and full applications will not be reviewed for technical merit.

The Program will retain one copy of each non-responsive abbreviated proposal and full application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

To simplify the proposal writing and evaluation process, the following selection procedure will be used:

All applicants must submit an abbreviated proposal (original and two signed copies), containing a description of the proposed project, including sufficient information to address the evaluation criteria, with a total length of no more than five (5) double spaced pages, to the mailing address given above in the “Addresses” section. These proposals will be screened to determine whether they address the requirements outlined in this notice. Proposals that do not meet those requirements will not be considered further. Eight independent, objective individuals, at least half of whom are NIST employees, and who are knowledgeable about the scientific areas that the program addresses will conduct a technical review of each abbreviated proposal, based on the evaluation criteria described in the Evaluation Criteria section for this program. The proposals will then be ranked based on the average of the reviewers' rankings. If non-Federal reviewers are used, the reviewers may discuss the proposals with each other, but the ranking will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

The Chief of the Atomic Physics Division of the Physics Laboratory, the selecting official, will then select approximately four to eight finalists. In selecting finalists, the selecting official will take into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, including rank, and relevance to the program objectives described above in the Program Description section. Applicants not selected as finalists will be notified in writing.

Finalists will then be asked in writing to submit full proposals in accordance with the requirements set forth in the Content and Form of Application Submission section of the FFO. The same independent reviewers that reviewed the abbreviated proposals will then evaluate the full proposals based on the same evaluation criteria, and the proposals will be ranked as previously described. In selecting proposals that will be recommended for funding, the selecting official will take into consideration the results of the reviewers' evaluations, including rank and relevance to the program objectives described in the Program Description section of this notice.

The final approval of selected applications and award of grants will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Start Printed Page 76251

Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award.

The decision of the Grants Officer is final.

Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: The evaluation criteria to be used in evaluating the abbreviated application proposals and full proposals are:

1. The importance of the proposed research—Does it have the potential of answering some currently pressing question or of opening up a whole new area of activity?

2. The relationship of the proposed research to NIST's ongoing work—Will it support one of NIST's current efforts to develop a new or improved fundamental measurement method or physical standard, test the basic laws of physics, or provide an improved value for a fundamental constant?

3. The feasibility of the research and the potential impact of the grant—Is it likely that significant progress can be made in a three year time period with the funds and personnel available and that the funding will enable work that would otherwise not be done with existing or potential funding?

4. The qualifications of the applicant—Does the educational and employment background and the quality of the research, based on recent publications, of the applicant indicate that there is a high probability that the proposed research will be carried out successfully?

Each of these factors is given equal weight in the evaluation process.

Cost Share Requirements: The Precision Measurement Grants Program does not require any matching funds.

The following information applies to all programs announced in this notice:

The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements: The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements contained in the Federal Register notice of December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389). On the form SF-424, the applicant's 9-digit Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number must be entered in the Applicant Identifier block (68 FR 38402).

Collaborations with NIST Employees: All applications should include a description of any work proposed to be performed by an entity other than the applicant, and the cost of such work should ordinarily be included in the budget.

If an applicant proposes collaboration with NIST, the statement of work should include a statement of this intention, a description of the collaboration, and prominently identify the NIST employee(s) involved, if known. Any collaboration by a NIST employee must be approved by appropriate NIST management and is at the sole discretion of NIST. Prior to beginning the merit review process, NIST will verify the approval of the proposed collaboration. Any unapproved collaboration will be stricken from the proposal prior to the merit review.

Use of NIST Intellectual Property: If the applicant anticipates using any NIST-owned intellectual property to carry out the work proposed, the applicant should identify such intellectual property. This information will be used to ensure that no NIST employee involved in the development of the intellectual property will participate in the review process for that competition. In addition, if the applicant intends to use NIST-owned intellectual property, the applicant must comply with all statutes and regulations governing the licensing of Federal government patents and inventions, described at 35 U.S.C. sec. 200-212, 37 CFR part 401, 15 CFR 14.36, and in section 20 of the Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements published on December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389). Questions about these requirements may be directed to the Counsel for NIST, 301-975-2803.

Any use of NIST-owned intellectual property by a proposer is at the sole discretion of NIST and will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis if a project is deemed meritorious. The applicant should indicate within the statement of work whether it already has a license to use such intellectual property or whether it intends to seek one.

If any inventions made in whole or in part by a NIST employee arise in the course of an award made pursuant to this notice, the United States government may retain its ownership rights in any such invention. Licensing or other disposition of NIST's rights in such inventions will be determined solely by NIST, and include the possibility of NIST putting the intellectual property into the public domain.

Initial Screening of all Applications: All applications received in response to this announcement will be reviewed to determine whether or not they are complete and responsive to the scope of the stated objectives for each program. Incomplete or non-responsive applications will not be reviewed for technical merit. The Program will retain one copy of each non-responsive application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Paperwork Reduction Act: The standard forms in the application kit involve a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act. The use of Standard Forms 424, 424A, 424B, SF-LLL, and CD-346 have been approved by OMB under the respective Control Numbers 0348-0043, 0348-0044, 0348-0040, 0348-0046, and 0605-0001.

Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act, unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB Control Number.

Research Projects Involving Human Subjects, Human Tissue, Data or Recordings Involving Human Subjects: Any proposal that includes research involving human subjects, human tissue, data or recordings involving human subjects must meet the requirements of the Common Rule for the Protection of Human Subjects, codified for the Department of Commerce at 15 CFR part 27. In addition, any proposal that includes research on these topics must be in compliance with any statutory requirements imposed upon the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and other federal agencies regarding these topics, all regulatory policies and guidance adopted by DHHS, FDA, and other Federal agencies on these topics, and all Presidential statements of policy on these topics.

NIST will accept the submission of human subjects protocols that have been approved by Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) possessing a current, valid Federal-wide Assurance (FWA) from DHHS. NIST will not issue a single project assurance (SPA) for any IRB reviewing any human subjects protocol proposed to NIST.

On August 9, 2001, the President announced his decision to allow Federal funds to be used for research on existing human embryonic stem cell lines as long as prior to his announcement (1) the derivation process (which commences with the removal of the inner cell mass from the blastocyst) had already been initiated and (2) the Start Printed Page 76252embryo from which the stem cell line was derived no longer had the possibility of development as a human being. NIST will follow guidance issued by the National Institutes of Health at http://ohrp.osophs.dhhs.gov/​humansubjects/​guidance/​stemcell.pdf for funding such research.

Research Projects Involving Vertebrate Animals: Any proposal that includes research involving vertebrate animals must be in compliance with the National Research Council's “Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals” which can be obtained from National Academy Press, 2101 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20055. In addition, such proposals must meet the requirements of the Animal Welfare Act (7 U.S.C. 2131 et seq.), 9 CFR parts 1, 2, and 3, and if appropriate, 21 CFR part 58. These regulations do not apply to proposed research using pre-existing images of animals or to research plans that do not include live animals that are being cared for, euthanized, or used by the project participants to accomplish research goals, teaching, or testing. These regulations also do not apply to obtaining animal materials from commercial processors of animal products or to animal cell lines or tissues from tissue banks.

Limitation of Liability: In no event will the Department of Commerce be responsible for proposal preparation costs if these programs fail to receive funding or are cancelled because of other agency priorities. Publication of this announcement does not oblige the agency to award any specific project or to obligate any available funds. Funding of any award under any program announced in this notice is subject to the availability of funds.

Executive Order 12866: This funding notice was determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism): It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies with federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 13132.

Executive Order 12372: Applications under this program are not subject to Executive Order 12372, “Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.”

Administrative Procedure Act/Regulatory Flexibility Act: Notice and comment are not required under the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) or any other law, for rules relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits or contracts (5 U.S.C. 553 (a)). Because notice and comment are not required under 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other law, for rules relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits or contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)), a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis is not required and has not been prepared for this notice, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.

Start Signature

Dated: December 15, 2005.

William Jeffrey,

Director, NIST.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 05-24424 Filed 12-22-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3510-13-P