Frequently Asked Questions

Last Updated: 10/05/2021


Where can I find NSUF publications? 

Publications and presentations that have been added to the NSUF website are located here: https://nsuf.inl.gov/Publication/List 


Where can I find NSUF Annual Reports? 

NSUF Annual Reports are linked at the bottom of this page: https://nsuf.inl.gov/Page/about 

 

How do I reset my account or password? 

If you haven’t logged in for a while, the site will require that you set a password for your account. When you login, you’ll see a password reset screen that asks you for the email address associated with your account, and then asks you to type your new password two times.  


Please contact us at nsuf@inl.gov if you are not sure what email address is associated with your account. 

 

How can industry participate the NSUF program? 

For the CINR FOA, DOE seeks applications from U.S. universities, national laboratories, and industry to conduct Program Supporting (PS), Mission Supporting (MS), and NSUF supported nuclear energy-related research to help meet the objectives of the major DOE-NE funded research programs. For the FY22 CINR, the NSUF-2 work scope allows industry applications. 

 

Do I need to have a technical lead for a CINR project? If so, how and when should I obtain one? 

Yes. The initial purpose of an NSUF Technical Lead is to help the PI develop a feasible application that will have the highest chance of being awarded. NSUF Technical Leads are high caliber, usually PhD research scientists and engineers at the NSUF facilities. They have knowledge of, and direct access to, important information about the facility or facilities where the work of an awarded project will be performed. The Technical Lead(s) should be an integral member of the project team and contribute strongly to the application preparation.  


Technical Leads for NSUF partner facilities are listed on the NSUF website: https://nsuf.inl.gov/Page/Partners 


Technical Leads for INL facilities are assigned by NSUF Chief Scientists after Letters of Intent are received.  

 

Do I need to have a collaborator on a CINR award? 

Collaboration is encouraged and is a factor in evaluation scores. A collaborator is an individual that makes a defined, material contribution that is critical to the success of the project and/or contributing to joint publications. 

 

Where can I find CINR submittal instructions? 

Part IV, Section C. The CINR FOA document can be found on NEUP.gov: https://neup.inl.gov/Lists/Headlines/AnnouncementDispForm.aspx?ID=230 

 

Why do I need to submit an LOI for NSUF applications? 

Letter of Intents are required. They are used by the NSUF Program Office in the assignment of INL technical leads, LOIs are provided to the technical leads and start the communication process between technical leads and the submitting applicants. 


As stated in the FOA:
 

In order to ensure that a pre-application and eventual application is submitted with the highest possible degree of feasibility, it is imperative that potential proposers establish contact with an NSUF Technical Lead at the earliest possible time. The NSUF Technical Lead will have knowledge of and direct access to the facility or facilities where the work will be performed. It is intended that the Technical Lead should be an integral collaborator on the project and contribute strongly to the application preparation. The Technical Lead will provide guidance in establishing the scope of the project in negotiation with the facility to produce a cost estimate. Should the project be awarded, the Technical Lead will be the primary POC to best ensure the project is performed on schedule and within budget. 

 

How many active RTE’s can I have at one time? 

A principal investigator may only have two active RTE Projects. RTE projects are considered active until a satisfactory completion report has been submitted and approved. If you currently have two active proposals during an ongoing call, a new proposal may be prepared and saved in the application. However, you will not be able to submit a new proposal until you complete at least one of your active projects.


 

Once a CINR or RTE call is open, what assistance can NSUF provide me with my application? 

RTE staff can assist with submittal questions and issues. During an open RTE call, you may call any of the NSUF facility contacts for assistance with proposal feasibility. NSUF facility staff and facility contacts can not help with the technical aspects of a proposal in order to ensure fairness during the review process. 


For CINR applications, technical leads will provide guidance in establishing the scope of the project and work with the facility(ies) to produce a cost estimate for the proposed scope of work. They assist applicants in understanding specific NSUF and facility requirements early in the proposal process (particularly for neutron irradiation tests, as the irradiation of materials/fuels in test reactors requires rigor and has needs beyond those described in other sections of the CINR FOA). Questions on CINR application issues can be directed to the NEUP Integration Office Solicitation Specialist, Anna.Podgorney@inl.gov. Other questions can be directed to the NSUF CINR Administrator, Lindy.Bean@inl.gov. 

 

Is there a time or dollar limit on my award? 

An RTE project has a suggested target of $50,000. As applicants will not know the cost of their proposal, NSUF has posted a set of Facility Guidelines (https://nsuf.inl.gov/Page/rte) for RTE experiments that are designed to help researchers develop a proposal that can be executed for within less than the suggested target. The guidelines are based on the average cost of instrument time at each facility. The guidelines are based on a typical work week at each facility and assume that only one instrument is used each day. If you request more than one NSUF facility for your project, please note that all facility costs are considered as part of the total target. It is recommended that you contact the specific NSUF facility(s) you wish to use to help you develop a proposal that meets the dollar target guideline.


CINR projects have up to two types of funding; R&D funds and Access-Only funds. R&D funds support salaries, tuition, travel, or other costs typically supported via DOE-NE Program R&D funds. Access-only funds are provided to the NSUF partners to support the work scopes for awarded projects. Refer to Part II, Section C Maximum and Minimum Award Size in the CINR FOA: https://neup.inl.gov/Lists/Headlines/AnnouncementDispForm.aspx?ID=230 


Eligible work scopes for a NSUF R&D project are found in Part IX, Appendices A and B of the CINR FOA, and applications must comply with the provisions of Part IX, Appendix D of this CINR FOA. 

 

How long is the RTE application? 

The RTE application has 6 short sections. These sections include: principal investigator information, team member information, experiment details, technical abstract (less than 500 words), DOE program relevance abstract (less than 500 words), and a proposal narrative (less than 2 pages). 

 

Can the NSUF grant a no-cost extension to my project? 

Per RTE guidelines awarded RTEs must be completed within nine months of the date of award. There is not a formal NSUF process to extend work beyond nine months. If a project extends beyond nine months, Principal Investigators should work with NSUF RTE Administrator, Jeff Benson (jeff.benson@inl.gov), to ensure that a project is completed as soon as possible. NSUF may cancel a project if is not completed within the nine-month timeline.


For CINR awards, no cost extensions pertain to DOE cooperative agreements. If an award received R&D funding in addition to NSUF access then a DOE cooperative agreement was set up for that award. Follow these steps found on NEUP.gov:


To apply for a no-cost extension (NCE), submit a completed NCE Request Form and submit to Tara Haack (haacktj@id.doe.gov ) and cc: Anna Podgorney (anna.podgorney@inl.gov). Once received, a budget replan, by milestone, will be sent out and will need to be completed and returned. If you need additional assistance, please contact Tara Haack or Anna Podgorney.


For CINR NSUF-2 access only projects, there is not a formal extension process; contact the NSUF CINR Administrator, Lindy.Bean@inl.gov, for discussion on project extension.

 

What is the status of my RTE application? 

RTE application status can be checked on the Proposal page. From there, check the status column in the "MProposals" box. 

 

Where can I find current RTE or CINR call information? 

Both the CINR and RTE pages are regularly updated. Please contact us at nsuf@inl.gov if the page does not answer your question. You can also visit the Communications page to sign up for email notifications.  


Can I see all current applications? 

This information is not public. However, previously awarded projects can be found on the NSUF website.  

 

Where can I find previous NSUF projects? 

Previous NSUF projects can be found here: https://nsuf.inl.gov/Home/Projects 

 

Is there a way to submit a rebuttal for a rejected proposal? 

There is no formal process. However, you may always apply in the next award round.  

 

My question wasn’t answered, who do I contact? 

You can email nsuf@inl.gov with any further questions.