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NSF 12-111

Dear Colleague Letter - Continental Scientific Drilling

DATE: July 30, 2012

This letter is to inform you of two actions that the National Science Foundation (NSF) will take to accommodate the needs of the continental scientific drilling community.

(1) To facilitate the planning activities that are necessary to support earth science proposals requiring continental scientific drilling, the Division of Earth Sciences (EAR) will accept "planning grant proposals". Such a planning grant may be used to support pre-drilling activities that will strengthen a drilling proposal intended for submission to one of EAR's core science programs. These activities could include workshops, community planning activities, site surveys, equipment design, and drilling plan and budget preparation. These proposals should be submitted to the EAR/Instrumentation and Facilities Program as "unsolicited proposals" with a budget of less than $50,000.

(2) EAR intends to release a solicitation to re-compete the management and operation of a Continental Scientific Drilling Program Office. This plan will address existing National Science Board policy requiring periodic re-competition of the management of major NSF facilities (NSB-08-16). NSF welcomes community feedback on this plan. Please contact the following NSF program officer with questions or comments:

David Lambert
Instrumentation & Facilities Program