NSF: Major Research Instrumentation Program (MRI)Instrument Acquisition or Development NSF 18-513
This solicitation... serves to increase access to multi-user scientific and engineering instrumentation for research and research training
USC may only submit three proposals in response to this program announcement. Submissions are based on the dollar value of the amount requested from NSF; no more than two submissions are permitted in Track 1 - proposals requesting from NSF $100,000 to less than $1 million, and no more than one submission is permitted in Track 2 - proposals ranging from $1 million to $4 million in requested NSF funds.
Proposal submissions within the two tracks may be either for acquisition or development of a research instrument. NSF strongly values MRI proposals that seek to develop next-generation research instruments that open new frontiers of research. As a result, the MRI program seeks to support development proposals in numbers (i.e., up to 1/3 of awards) consistent with recent competitions, depending on the numbers and quality of the proposals.
The MRI Program seeks broad representation by PIs in its award portfolio, including women, underrepresented minorities and persons with disabilities. Since diversity may be greater among early-career researchers, the MRI program also encourages proposals with early-career PIs and proposals that benefit early-career researchers.
Cost-sharing of precisely 30% of the total project cost is required. You will need to include documentation that your chair or center director and/or Dean will commit to the full amount of the required cost share. This can be in the form of a memo or e-mail. Proposals to the internal competition that do not have this documentation will not be reviewed.
Your application submission MUST be coordinated with the Office of the Vice President for Research.
Please send a three page abstract via email to Richard White (
In addition to the three page abstract, please include an NSF-formatted biosketch for the PI and any other key personnel. All Principal Investigators must include documentation of cost share commitment(s) from chairs and deans. All Principal Investigators resubmitting a previously non- funded MRI proposal must also include reviewer remarks. Please compile all documents into a single PDF.
The NSF window for applications to the MRI program is January 1 – January 19, 2021.
For more information: https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2018/nsf18513/nsf18513.htm