The National Science Foundation is offering the following grant opportunity with a submission deadline of September 15th 2009. The duration of unsolicited awards is generally one to three years. The average annual award size for the program is $100,000. The grant id is: PD 09-7644

The Energy for Sustainability program supports fundamental research and education in energy production, conversion, and storage and is focused on energy sources that are environmentally friendly and renewable. Most world energy needs are currently met through the combustion of fossil fuels. With projected increases in global energy needs, more sustainable methods for energy production will need to be developed, and production of greenhouse gases will need to be reduced.

Sources of sustainable energy include:

* Sunlight
* Wind
* Biomass

Hydrogen and alcohols are potential energy carriers that can be derived from renewable sources. Research that generates enabling science and technologies for more efficient hydrogen generation and storage is supported by the program. Potential sources of hydrogen include conversion from biomass and from electrolysis, photolysis or thermolysis of water. Biomass is available from agricultural crop residues, forest products, aquatic plants, and municipal wastes. In addition to hydrogen, biomass can be a source of liquid, solid, and gaseous fuels including biofuels such as ethanol.

Fuel cells have the potential to convert fuels such as hydrogen and alcohols to electricity at high efficiencies and should play an increasing role in energy conversion. Critical components of fuel cells requiring additional research include catalysts and electrolytes. Development of these components also requires fundamental research on the reaction and transport mechanisms at the catalyst and membrane electrolyte interface. Advances in these areas are needed to address key challenges in efficiency, durability, power density, and environmental impacts. The engineering aspects of fuel-cell design and operation also require further study in areas such as water and thermal management.

Wind power is a growing source of electrical energy. Increased efficiency requires a fundamental knowledge of the interaction of wind with the blade structure. Understanding the fluid flow, and optimizing blade design are important aspects in developing more efficient wind generators. Photovoltaic devices have the potential to supply a significant fraction of electrical energy to the power grid. Although silicon-based materials have been most widely used, other semiconducting materials and titanium dioxide also have potential. New materials and novel fabrication techniques for solar energy conversion are supported by the program.

The duration of unsolicited awards is generally one to three years. The average annual award size for the program is $100,000. Any proposal received outside the announced dates will be returned without review.

The duration of CAREER awards is five years. The submission deadline for Engineering CAREER proposals is in July every year. Please see the following URL for more information:

Apply to PD 09-7644 as follows:

For full proposals submitted via FastLane: standard Grant Proposal Guidelines apply.
For full proposals submitted via NSF Application Guide; A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Guidelines apply (Note: The NSF Application Guide is available on the website and on the NSF website at:

Please be advised that the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) includes revised guidelines to implement the mentoring provisions of the America COMPETES Act (ACA) (Pub. L. No. 110-69, Aug. 9, 2007.) As specified in the ACA, each proposal that requests funding to support postdoctoral researchers must include a description of the mentoring activities that will be provided for such individuals. Proposals that do not comply with this requirement will be returned without review (see the PAPP Guide Part I: Grant Proposal Guide Chapter II for further information about the implementation of this new requirement).

© 2009, Tracey de Morsella. All rights reserved. Do not republish.

Line Break

Author: Tracey de Morsella (323 Articles)

Tracey de Morsella started her career working as an editor for US Technology Magazine. She used that experience to launch Delaware Valley Network, a publication for professionals in the Greater Philadelphia area. Years later, she used the contacts and resources she acquired to work in executive search specializing in technical and diversity recruitment. She has conducted recruitment training seminars for Wachovia Bank, the Department of Interior and the US Postal Service. During this time, she also created a diversity portal called The Multicultural Advantage and published the Diversity Recruitment Advertising Toolkit, a directory of recruiting resources for human resources professionals. Her career and recruitment articles have appeared in numerous publications and web portals including Woman Engineer Magazine,, Job Search Channel, Workplace Diversity Magazine, Society for Human Resource Management web site, NSBE Engineering Magazine,, and Human Resource Consultants Association Newsletter. Her work with technology professionals drew her to pursuing training and work in web development, which led to a stint at Merrill Lynch as an Intranet Manager. In March, she decided to combine her technical and career management expertise with her passion for the environment, and with her husband, launched The Green Economy Post, a blog providing green career information and covering the impact of the environment, sustainable building, cleantech and renewable energy on the US economy. Her sustainability articles have appeared on Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operation, Chem.Info,FastCompany and CleanTechies.