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Division of Chemistry

Chemical Structure, Dynamics and Mechanisms (CSDM-B)

Name Email Phone Room
Tingyu  Li (703) 292-4949  1055 S  
Kevin  Moeller (703) 292-7054  1055 E  

Administrative Program Support: Illinois I. Johnson, or (703) 292-7182


Apply to PD 12-9102 as follows:

For full proposals submitted via FastLane: standard NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide proposal preparation guidelines apply.
For full proposals submitted via the NSF Application Guide: A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Guidelines applies. (Note: The NSF Application Guide is available on the website and on the NSF website at:

Important Information for Proposers

A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 17-1), is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 30, 2017. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 17-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.


Full Proposal Window

    September 1, 2017 - October 2, 2017

    September 1 - September 30, Annually Thereafter

    September 1, 2017 - October 2, 2017

    September 1 - September 30, Annually Thereafter

        CSDM Window

Note that if the last day of a submission window falls on a weekend or official Federal government holiday, the deadline is always the following business day, at 5 pm local time.


Note: For proposals with significant emphasis on sustainable chemistry, consider making proposal submissions to this program with the Proposal Title as:  ‘SusChEM: Name of Your Proposal'.  For more information, see the DCL on SusChEM (, a NSF Emphasis Area. 

Note: For proposals with significant emphasis on understanding the role of the chemistry of nitrogen, phosphorous, and water in the nexus of food, energy and water systems, consider making proposal submissions to this program with the Proposal Title as 'INFEWS" N/P/H20: Name of Your Proposal.' For more information, see the FY 2016 DCL on Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water Systems (INFEWS) Funding Opportunity on Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Water (, a new NSF Emphasis Area.

The CSDM Program supports research on the nature of molecular structure and its consequences for reactivity, intermolecular interactions, and dynamics.   Chemical dynamics is defined to encompass reaction kinetics and mechanisms, intramolecular rearrangement or conformational changes, and changes induced via electromagnetic excitation.  While the majority of projects supported by CSDM are experimental in nature, the Program is receptive to research focused on utilizing applied computational methods.  However, the proposer should establish a high degree of relevance to the understanding of existing experimental data.  The CSDM Program is concerned primarily with chemical phenomena in the gas and fluid phases, as well as chemical processes at gas-fluid, gas-solid, fluid-solid, and fluid-fluid interfaces.  Proposals concerned with solid phase chemical processes are generally not supported by the Program. Proposals whose primary questions relate to phenomena arising from the properties of nanoscale materials or assemblies should be submitted to the Macromolecular, Supramolecular, and Nanochemistry Program (CHE/MSN). CSDM supports research projects that have strong implications for advancing the foundational physical models of chemical structure and dynamics.  Projects focusing on device development are not supported by the Program.

The CSDM Program is divided into two sub-programs, CSDM-A and CSDM-B.  The two programs will inevitably overlap in some instances.  At coarse resolution, they are separable in terms of i) molecular complexity, ii) time scale, iii) strength of the interactions, and iv) links to potential applications. The individual Program Descriptions are intended to guide the proposer to the most appropriate sub-program for his/her research.  If additional guidance is required, Principal Investigators are encouraged to send brief electronic summaries of their research to CSDM Program Directors prior to formal proposal submission.  After Programmatic review of the summaries, Principal Investigators will be given advice as to the appropriateness of the research for CSDM, and if appropriate, the best sub-program (CSDM-A or CSDM-B) for submission.


Research supported in this program seeks to map specific molecular structures to their chemical reactivities and/or chemical properties.  It often involves complex chemical systems and may contain a substantial amount of chemical synthesis.  While the CSDM-A portfolio includes phenomena that are tracked with ultrafast methods, research supported under CSDM-B extends to time scales dictated by reaction kinetics.  CSDM-B proposals generally utilize existing experimental techniques as opposed to developing new ones.   Topics of interests to CSDM-B include (but are not limited to) mechanistic studies of organometallic, organic, and inorganic reactions, chemistry of reactive intermediates, mechanistic studies of energy-related processes, and the interaction of light and electrons with chemical structures.  Examples of recently funded projects in CSDM-B include mechanistic studies directed toward universal ligands and catalytic reactions of samarium diiodide, charge delocalization and mobility in ground and photoexcited states of conjugated systems, reactivity of 1,2-diradicals, shape-responsive fluorophores, computational studies of cycloaddition reactions, photophysical properties of spin-polarized molecules, and photorelease of stable molecules.

For information on the CSDM-A Program, follow this link:  PD 12-9101

What Has Been Funded (Recent Awards Made Through This Program, with Abstracts)

Map of Recent Awards Made Through This Program