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Research Mini-Grants

Grants to Nebraska IHE Faculty and Staff for
Small-Scale Aerospace Research Projects

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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NASA Nebraska Space Grant

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Grants of up to $5,000 and grants of up to $10,000 to Nebraska faculty and staff at qualifying IHEs for small-scale research in the fields of aerospace science and space exploration. The purpose of this program is to advance aerospace research conducted within the state.

The Space Grant Research Mini-Grant program (different than the NASA Nebraska EPSCoR Research Mini-grant program) provides small NASA and aerospace-related research grants to Nebraska researchers interested in further developing ties with NASA scientists and conducting research important to NASA.

The two goals of the Space Grant Research Mini-grant program are: 1) To elevate the aerospace-related research being conducted in Nebraska for future infrastructure building and workforce development opportunities; and 2) To result in future proposals to NASA and/or other federal, state, or private organizations for funding.

Mini-grants are not intended to be sustaining funding; rather they are intended to support a project or program for one year, allowing the project or program to grow and obtain more permanent funding elsewhere. To be eligible for funding, projects must be NASA- or aerospace-related.

Applicants should respond to the following key criteria in the proposal (criteria are listed in order of importance):
-Unique nature of the project to NASA
-Collaboration with NASA, the aerospace industry, and/or minority-serving institutions
-Diversity, both faculty and students
-Quality student research experience provided
-Potential for growth, contributing to Nebraska’s infrastructure and workforce
-Leveraging potential for resulting proposals to NASA and other federal agencies
-Potential for resulting peer-reviewed publications
-Contribution to faculty development
-Cost-share in excess of stated requirements

Furthermore, applicants are asked in the application to clearly state the objectives of the project and how they will evaluate against them. Applications should describe key metrics used for program evaluation, including a plan for acquiring and aggregating data to which the pre-award baseline data will be compared.  

It is important to take into account the following metrics which the NASA Nebraska Space Grant Consortium must achieve.

Metrics the Research Mini-Grant Program Must Meet or Exceed This Year:
-21% or higher participation of underrepresented students.
-42% or higher participation of female students.
-75% of academic research affiliates submit at least 1 research mini-grant proposal.
-90% of research mini-grant awards will be endorsed by a NASA collaborator, or document alignment with the NASA Strategic Plan, Mission Directorates, or NASA Center priorities.
-Researchers will make 5 new contacts or strengthen existing collaborations with NASA scientists.
-75% of mini-grant awards will include a student research experience.
-60% of student researchers will pursue a higher academic degree in a STEM-related field, or employment in a STEM-related field following their research experience.
-50% of researchers will submit a proposal for continued funding of their research elsewhere.
-At least 1 publication will result from each funded project.
-90% of funded researchers will submit abstracts for presentation at the annual conference.
-1 research mini-grant per year will link a Nebraska Tribal College to a research university.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 162130

Estimated Size of Grant:

Applicants may request NASA support in an amount no greater than:

-$10,000 if the project has a well-established NASA collaboration. This collaboration must be documented in the respective section of the application.

-$5,000 if the project has direct application to NASA and a well-developed plan for establishing a NASA collaboration. This collaboration plan must be documented in the NASA Collaboration section of the application. Subsequent funding will be based on the ability of the applicant to establish such a collaboration.

Proposed amounts should be reflective of the scope of the project. It is important to note that not all projects will be funded at the maximum award levels. Selected projects may be funded at lesser amounts based on the project’s alignment with the goals of the program or due to budget restrictions.

Term of Contract:

The anticipated funding period is August 1, 2018 - February 28, 2019. It is important to note there are no extensions for these funds due to the grant expiration date. New proposals for funding will need to be made in the subsequent year.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Faculty and staff at participating NASA Nebraska Space Grant college and university affiliates ( are eligible to apply for Research Mini-Grants. Graduate students pursuing thesis or dissertation research at these participating affiliates may apply through the Fellowship program.

Applicants without a NASA collaboration, or plans to establish a collaboration will not be considered for funding.

Unallowable Costs:

NASA Space Grant does not allow the following:
-Foreign travel,
-Giveaways (t-shirts, door prizes, promotional items, etc.),
-Travel for NASA Civil Servants,
-Equipment (items costing more than $5,000 per unit), and
-Supplies totaling more than $3,000.

The following items are only allowed under special circumstances; therefore, they are strongly discouraged:
-Catering for events, and
-General computing supplies (computers, laptops, external hard drives, etc.).

Indirect costs (F&A) and faculty salary costs are not allowable in the request; however, waived (or contributed) indirects and faculty salary may be used as cost-share.

Only U.S. citizens are allowed to receive direct support from the NASA Space Grant program (e.g. salary & travel). Permanent residents are not allowed to receive funding.

Participation, collaboration, or coordination with China or any Chinese-owned company is strictly prohibited on these awards.

Pre-Application Information:

Cost-share may be in-kind or cash, but must be non-federal funds. Applicants are required to provide at least a 1:1.5 match or cost-share. For example, if the request to Space Grant is for $1,000, the applicant needs to provide $1,500 in cost-share. Salary and waived/contributed indirects (F&A) are the most common form of cost-share. Cost-share in excess of the stated requirements will strengthen a proposal. Contact your Sponsored Programs or Business Office for assistance in determining what is allowed at your institution.
he budget attachment.

Applications are due May 20 for funding period beginning August 1.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

(402) 554-3772

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Nebraska

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