A - Primarily intended to fund technology
National Science Foundation (NSF)
The Campus Cyberinfrastructure program invests in coordinated campus-level networking and cyberinfrastructure improvements, innovation, integration, and engineering for science applications and distributed research projects. Learning and workforce development (LWD) in CI is explicitly addressed in the program. Science-driven requirements are the primary motivation for any proposed activity. Proposals will be evaluated on the strength of the science enabled (including research and education) as drivers for investment and innovation in data networking infrastructure, innovation, and engineering.
A common theme across all aspects of the CC* program is the critical importance of the partnership among campus-level CI experts, including the campus Information Technology (IT)/networking/data organization, contributing domain scientists, research groups, and educators necessary to engage in, and drive, new campus CI capabilities and approaches in support of scientific discovery. Proposals across the program should reflect and demonstrate this partnership on campus. Proposals will be evaluated on the strength of institutional partnerships, as they are expected to play a central role in developing and implementing the eventual network and data infrastructure upgrades.
For FY 22, CC* will support projects within the following 2 program areas:
- Data Storage- This program area supports campus data storage needs for scientific data. Campuses may request up to $500,000 in data storage and associated hardware.
- Regional Computing- This program area promotes coordinated approaches in scientific computing at the regional level through investments in computing clusters serving scientific computing needs spanning a state or region's small and under resourced institutions.
All proposals submitted to the CC* program, must include a Campus CI plan within which the proposed CI improvements are conceived, designed, and implemented in the context of a coherent campus-wide strategy and approach to CI that is integrated horizontally intra-- campus and vertically with regional and national CI investments and best practices. This Campus CI plan must be included as a Supplementary Document and is limited to no more than 5 pages. The website, http://fasterdata.es.net/campusCIplanning/, offers a number of Campus CI plans provided by existing CC* program awardees as examples. Proposals addressing a multi--institution or regional activity and approach to coordinated and integrated CI may submit a Campus CI plan representing the multi--institution group or region.
All proposals submitted to CC* are expected to address the relevant cybersecurity issues and challenges related to their proposed activities. Depending on the type of proposal, these issues may include, but are not limited to: data integrity, privacy, network security measures, federated access and identity management, and infrastructure monitoring.
As a campus CI program, funded activities should represent ongoing opportunities for student engagement, education, and training. Proposals that demonstrate opportunities to engage students directly in the deployment, operation, and advancement of the CI funded activities, consistent with the required Campus CI plan, are encouraged. Note that NSF encourages Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) supplement proposals on active awards as well.
History of Funding
Recently funded projects through this program can be found at https://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/advancedSearchResult?ProgEleCode=1640,7726,8080&BooleanElement=Any&BooleanRef=Any&ActiveAwards=trueresults.
The CC* program welcomes proposals in two program areas: Data Storage and Regional Computing
This program area promotes coordinated approaches in scientific storage and data management at the campus level and incentivizes multi-campus and national resource sharing. It is expected that campus-wide storage needs are addressed in the proposal; a proposal focusing on a single science domain or project use will not be considered for funding. All proposals in this program area must address:
- Scientific and engineering projects and their research and education storage needs, describing project-specific scenarios for scientific data generation, storage, and management;
- Features, capabilities, and software platforms representing the proposed storage resources and services; and
- Plans to manage the resource, data sets, and usage while ensuring adherence to FAIR principles and equitable access.
The NSF encourages proposals in this program area from under-resourced institutions and strong preference will be given to proposals demonstrating a compelling need for access to data storage resources, including institutions lacking necessary data storage resources on campus. Applicants may request funding for the acquisition of a shared, high-performance network-connected data storage resource available to scientific users on campus and outside of campus. High-performance network connectivity projects must describe the network connectivity of the proposed storage resource, both intra-campus and inter-campus.
The Storage system as a Shared Resource Intra-campus and Inter-campus: Interoperability is required with a national and federated data sharing fabric such as PATh/OSDF (see: http://www.opensiencegrid.org/about/osdf). At least 20% of the disk/storage space on the proposed storage system must be made available as part of the chosen federated data sharing fabric. Staffing required to configure, operate, and support data management and access of the storage resource is an acceptable component of the budget at up to 25% of the overall budget request.
This area solicits proposals led by established regional and state research and education data networks and data network-based consortia. Example entities are listed as members of the national regional networks consortium called the Quilt (see https://www.thequilt.net/about-us/the-quilt-participants/). For areas of the US without a state or regional level coordinating entity and associated structure and network infrastructure, proposals will be accepted from self-declared leadership universities. An institution may also lead a proposal in regions with an established Regional Optical Network (RON) with documented coordination. NOTE: Proposals focusing on a single campus, a single science domain, or a single project use will not be considered for funding.
All proposals submitted to this area must address:
- Scientific and engineering projects and their research and education computing needs, describing project-specific scenarios for scientific computing tied to the proposed computing resources;
- Features, capabilities, and software platforms representing the proposed computing resources; and
- Scientific computing codes expected to run on the resources.
Proposals are encouraged to consider open-source virtualization technologies. Applicants may request funding for the acquisition of a shared, high-performance network-connected compute resource available to scientific computing users across a defined set of campuses. Being that storage is a component of an integrated compute cluster, applicants are allowed 25% of their requested budget to support this component. Proposals are required to commit to a minimum of 20% shared time on the cluster and describe their approach to making the cluster available as a shared resource external to the state/region and the set of institutions being primarily served. Proposals are strongly encouraged to address this requirement by joining the Partnerships to Advance Throughput Computing (PATh) campus Federation (https://opensciencegrid.org/campus-cyberinfrastructure.html) and adopting an appropriate subset of PATh services to make the cluster available to researchers on a national scale.
All CC* projects will be reviewed with careful attention to the following:
- The extent to which the work provides a needed capability required by science, engineering and education.
- The expected impact on the deployed environment described in the proposal, and potential impact across a broader segment of the NSF community.
- A Project Plan addressing clear goals and milestones resulting in a working system in the target environment.
- Tangible metrics to measure the success of the system.
- Where applicable, how resource access control, federated identity management, and other cybersecurity-related issues and community best practices are addressed.
- A Cyberinfrastructure (CI) plan: To what extent is the planned cyberinfrastructure likely to enhance capacity for discovery, innovation, and education in science and engineering? How well does the plan as presented position the proposing institution(s) for future cyberinfrastructure development? How well does the cyberinfrastructure plan support and integrate with the institutions' science and technology plan? Are IPv6 deployment and InCommon Federation addressed? Are the activities described in the proposal consistent with the institution's cyberinfrastructure plan?