Friday, December 15th, 2017

$20k Air Force University Engineering Design Challenge Program

Published on March 15, 2011 by   ·   No Comments
AFOSR, in conjunction with the AFRL Rapid Reaction Team, announces a program to promote and sustain university research and education focused on innovative military systems and related technologies. This program will be structured as a yearly design challenge, with the objectives and constraints of the design specified by the AFRL management team at the beginning of the academic year and a competition amongst the undergraduate university teams to determine the best design to be held at the end of the academic year.

The competitive nature of this effort is expected to provide enhanced incentives to participants in improving education related to practical design engineering, including systems engineering, requirements allocation and flowdown, design synthesis and problem solving, and innovative solution development, test and validation. The winner of this yearly competition will be encouraged to apply for additional projects as they are announced to continue their exemplary research, possibly incorporating elements of the other design solutions. However winning the competition does not guarantee additional funding and any subsequent funding opportunities will be available for all eligible proposers in accordance with the submission guidelines of the instrument.

This announcement is to select a set of university contestants that will conduct this research and participate in the design challenges for three years, primarily focused on problems and research related to mechanical engineering disciplines. Subsequent announcements will provide an opportunity for other universities to participate or other academic departments to participate. AFRL will evaluate the proposals using the evaluation criteria listed in this BAA and subject to availability of funds may choose to award up to ten universities.

Subsequent to the award of grants to selected universities, AFRL will issue a design challenge to stimulate research in an area of potential interest to the Department of Defense (DoD) at the beginning of the academic year. This topic will be selected by AFRL with input from the selected universities, consultation with military leaders and experiences from current military operations as reported in the open media. The topic will be posed as a problem or a capability goal, rather than a particular solution approach, which will allow the maximum opportunity for innovative solutions and education in design engineering. However, for the purposes of this research program, these problems are expected to focus on mechanical engineering and related engineering disciplines.

Each university will assemble a team of undergraduates (composed of a minimum of 5 members) to research, develop, fabricate and demonstrate a solution to the challenge at the end of the academic year, should they decide to participate, in a competition with the other university teams. These competitions will be performed at a single location, and transport of the teams’ solution and team travel to this location will be the responsibility of each competing university. Using a standardized testing regimen, each team will demonstrate the capability of their solution, and will present a summary of the design and its features to a panel of judges.

Teaming of universities is discouraged because of the nature of this design challenge, which requires close collaboration and intense interactions of the team members to meet the aggressive timelines and technical criteria for a solution. However, if a teaming arrangement is proposed, individual grants may be made to each university at a prorated funding level. The team of universities will split the available design space between team members and enter a single entry into the competition. Each such proposal should detail the overall team objectives and the role of each university. One institution should be indicated as the Point of Contact (POC) for all interactions with the government.

Award InformationIt is anticipated the awards will be made in the form of grants to universities. Therefore, applications submitted as a result of this announcement will fall under the Department of Defense Grant and Agreement Regulations (DoDGARs). Each project will be funded at no more than $20,000 per year for a maximum of three years. Collaborations with government agencies or industry are encouraged.

Eligibility Information

This competition is open only to, and full proposals are to be submitted only by, U.S. institutions of higher education (universities) including DoD institutions of higher education, with degree-granting programs in science and/or engineering. Proposals are encouraged from Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCU/MI). However, no funds are specifically allocated for HBCU/MI participation.

AFOSR, in conjunction with the AFRL Rapid Reaction Team, announces a program to promote and sustain university research and education focused on innovative military systems and related technologies. This program will be structured as a yearly design challenge, with the objectives and constraints of the design specified by the AFRL management team at the beginning of the academic year and a competition amongst the undergraduate university teams to determine the best design to be held at the end of the academic year. The competitive nature of this effort is expected to provide enhanced incentives to participants in improving education related to practical design engineering, including systems engineering, requirements allocation and flowdown, design synthesis and problem solving, and innovative solution development, test and validation.

The winner of this yearly competition will be encouraged to apply for additional projects as they are announced to continue their exemplary research, possibly incorporating elements of the other design solutions. However winning the competition does not guarantee additional funding and any subsequent funding opportunities will be available for all eligible proposers in accordance with the submission guidelines of the instrument.

This announcement is to select a set of university contestants that will conduct this research and participate in the design challenges for three years, primarily focused on problems and research related to mechanical engineering disciplines. Subsequent announcements will provide an opportunity for other universities to participate or other academic departments to participate. AFRL will evaluate the proposals using the evaluation criteria listed in this BAA and subject to availability of funds may choose to award up to ten universities.Subsequent to the award of grants to selected universities, AFRL will issue a design challenge to stimulate research in an area of potential interest to the Department of Defense (DoD) at the beginning of the academic year. This topic will be selected by AFRL with input from the selected universities, consultation with military leaders and experiences from current military operations as reported in the open media.

The topic will be posed as a problem or a capability goal, rather than a particular solution approach, which will allow the maximum opportunity for innovative solutions and education in design engineering. However, for the purposes of this research program, these problems are expected to focus on mechanical engineering and related engineering disciplines. Each university will assemble a team of undergraduates (composed of a minimum of 5 members) to research, develop, fabricate and demonstrate a solution to the challenge at the end of the academic year, should they decide to participate, in a competition with the other university teams.

These competitions will be performed at a single location, and transport of the teams’ solution and team travel to this location will be the responsibility of each competing university. Using a standardized testing regimen, each team will demonstrate the capability of their solution, and will present a summary of the design and its features to a panel of judges.Teaming of universities is discouraged because of the nature of this design challenge, which requires close collaboration and intense interactions of the team members to meet the aggressive timelines and technical criteria for a solution. However, if a teaming arrangement is proposed, individual grants may be made to each university at a prorated funding level. The team of universities will split the available design space between team members and enter a single entry into the competition. Each such proposal should detail the overall team objectives and the role of each university. One institution should be indicated as the Point of Contact (POC) for all interactions with the government.II. Award InformationIt is anticipated the awards will be made in the form of grants to universities. Therefore, applications submitted as a result of this announcement will fall under the Department of Defense Grant and Agreement Regulations (DoDGARs).

Each project will be funded at no more than $20,000 per year for a maximum of three years. Collaborations with government agencies or industry are encouraged.III.  This competition is open only to, and full proposals are to be submitted only by, U.S. institutions of higher education (universities) including DoD institutions of higher education, with degree-granting programs in science and/or engineering. Proposals are encouraged from Historically3Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCU/MI). However, no funds are specifically allocated for HBCU/MI participation.

Deadline: Proposals must be received by 4:00 PM EST, 25 April 2011
Full solicitation at: http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/opportunities/instructions/oppBAA-AFOSR-2011-03-cfda12.800-cidDESIGN-instructions.pdf

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