Division of Physics
Physics of Living Systems
14-576 Program Solicitation
Important Information for Proposers
A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 15-1), is
effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after December 26, 2014. The PAPPG is consistent
with, and, implements the new Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit
Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance) (2 CFR § 200). NSF anticipates release of
the PAPPG in the Fall of 2014. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date,
the guidelines contained in NSF 15-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this
Full Proposal Deadline Date: October 28, 2015
Fourth Wednesday in October, Annually Thereafter
The program "Physics of Living Systems" (PoLS) targets synergy of theoretical and experimental research exploring the most fundamental physical processes that living systems utilize to perform their functions in dynamic and diverse environments. The focus of the research proposals should be on understanding basic physical principles that underlie biological function. Proposals that use physics equipment only as a tool to study biological questions are of VERY low priority.
PoLS encourages research that emphasizes the physical principles of organization and function of living systems, including the exploration of artificial life forms and how life began. While the problems under study must be important to advancing our understanding of the living world in a quantitative way, particular emphasis will be placed on those projects in which lessons learned from the biological application also expand the intellectual range of physics. Awards cover a broad spectrum of physics approaches in biology, ranging from the physical principles and mechanisms at the single cell level such as molecular architecture and dynamics inside cells, energy metabolism, gene regulation and intracellular and intercellular communication, to collective behavior and evolution of complexity in life forms and living populations of organisms. This systems approach in physics has been very successful in understanding inanimate systems, and has the potential to bring deep understanding of the world of animated, replicating systems, through testable phenomenological theories. The program funds individual investigators, although collaborative proposals between physicists and biological researchers are welcome. Proposals with potential societal impact such as renewable energy, human health, and education are good examples of strong broader impact and are of interest to the program.
The Physics Division has replaced its annual Dear Colleague Letter (the most recent version was NSF 12-068) with a solicitation: Division of Physics: Investigator-Initiated Research Projects (NSF 14-576).
The solicitation follows most of the requirements in the Grant Proposal Guide, but has additional requirements that relate primarily to proposers who anticipate having multiple sources of support, and proposals involving significant instrumentation development. The solicitation also has deadlines instead of target dates.
All proposals submitted to the Physics Division that are not governed by another solicitation (such as CAREER) should be submitted to this solicitation; otherwise they will be returned without review.
THIS PROGRAM IS PART OF
Division of Physics: Investigator-Initiated Research Projects
EXPERIMENTAL PHYSICS: Funding Opportunities
THEORETICAL PHYSICS: Funding Opportunities
What Has Been Funded (Recent Awards Made Through This Program, with Abstracts)
Map of Recent Awards Made Through This Program