Advanced Computing Systems & Services: Adapting to the Rapid Evolution of Science and Engineering Research
NSF 20-606:  Limit on Number of Proposals per Organization: 1
  • An organization may submit only one proposal but may be a subawardee on other proposals responding to this solicitation.
RO Internal Letter of Intent deadline: September 7, 2020
Agency full proposal deadline: December 3, 2020

Anticipated Funding Amount: $5,000,000 to $10,000,000 per award.

  • A total of $30,000,000 is available for this solicitation, subject to the availability of funds. It is anticipated that 1-2 awards will be made in Category I at up to $10,000,000 per award for up to five years and up to 1-2 awards in Category II at up to $5,000,000 per award for up to five years.

The intent of this solicitation is to request proposals from organizations willing to serve as service providers (SPs) within the NSF Innovative High-Performance Computing (HPC) program to provide advanced cyberinfrastructure (CI) capabilities and/or services in production operations to support the full range of computational- and data-intensive research across all of science and engineering (S&E). The current solicitation is intended to complement previous NSF investments in advanced computational infrastructure by provisioning resources, broadly defined in this solicitation to include systems and/or services, in two categories:

  • Category I, Capacity Systems: production computational resources maximizing the capacity provided to support the broad range of computation and data analytics needs in S&E research; and
  • Category II, Innovative Prototypes/Testbeds: innovative forward-looking capabilities deploying novel technologies, architectures, usage modes, etc., and exploring new target applications, methods, and paradigms for S&E discoveries.

A successful proposal must clearly demonstrate how the proposed resource will support transformative discoveries in S&E. This may be done through a combination of analytical models projecting the anticipated performance of the proposed resource, appropriate benchmark results, and compelling empirical evidence validating that the resource will be a valuable scientific instrument for S&E discovery.

In either Category I or Category II, there is a possibility of a renewal award contingent upon availability of funds and the successful evaluation of the service provider’s performance as well as NSF merit review of the renewal proposal. During annual reviews, the Category I or Category II service provider’s achievements and future plans will be comprehensively evaluated according to the criteria defined in the initial award, associated metrics, and other relevant criteria. Contingent on a successful third-year review, Category I or Category II service provider may be invited by NSF to submit a renewal proposal in the same category as the original award, for up to five years commencing at the beginning of the fifth year of the original award.

The general guidance for the preparation of letters of intent to the Research Office:  email to

COVER SHEET (1 page)

  • Solicitation Name and Descriptive Title
  • Project Summary:  3 or 4 sentences that provide an overview of the objective of your proposed research, how you plan to do it, and the expected outcome.
  •  Unique Aspects:  3 or 4 sentences that highlight how your research/approach is different/better.
  •  Key PI/co-PIs:  5 or 6 sentences that highlight team expertise as it relates to the project.
  •  Justification for NSF support: One paragraph explaining why this research fits with the RFP and strategic goals of NSF.   


  • Problem statement - Clear and concise statement of 1) research question(s) and how the project will address the research question(s); 2) what technical barriers need to be overcome to perform the research, and 3) how the proposed research can lead to the advancement of research/knowledge in this area.
  • Project Description (2-3 pages): Please include the following: intellectual merit, broader impacts, resource specification, S&E application performance, resource reliability and usability, project management, data infrastructure, and operations plan (see solicitation for an explanation of any of these elements).
  • PI CV / Biosketch
  • Budget Overview (up to 1 page): A basic budget outlining project costs is sufficient; detailed OCG budgets are not required.

Suggested Reviewers:  Include

  • Name
  • Title
  • Contact
  • Area of expertise

Submit electronically as a PDF document to:





Date Open: 
Wednesday, June 5, 2019
National Science Foundation
Agency Deadline: 
Thursday, December 3, 2020
Limit per Institution: