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DEADLINE, Feb. 15: Dear Colleague Letter on storing, curating, and managing scientific ice cores


December 5, 2017

OPP is seeking expressions of interest from organizations interested in providing storage, curation, and scientific-management capabilities for ice cores collected in support of scientific research. The goal to ensure secure, long-term, cost-effective archival of and access to ice cores for use by the scientific community.

Read the DCL in its entirety here: https://www.nsf.gov/publications/pub_summ.jsp?ods_key=nsf18028.

Written responses are due by February 15, 2018.

OPP currently supports the National Ice Core Laboratory (NICL) (https://icecores.org/) housed at the Denver Federal Center in Lakewood, Colorado. NICL is supported with NSF funding through an Interagency Agreement with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Scientific management of the collection is provided through a sub award from the USGS to the University of New Hampshire.

The current NICL main archive freezer is near the end of its useful life and utilizes refrigerants that were phased out under the Montreal Protocol. NSF seeks a modern and compliant facility to ensure preservation and scientific access to ice core archives and to manage future operating costs. NSF anticipates investing in refurbishment and/or construction of an upgraded NICL facility along with an annual operations and maintenance budget to ensure the core are available for scientific analysis.

Modernization options include but are not limited to a modernized facility within the Denver Federal Center, a new facility at another location, or renovation of an existing facility.

NSF is also open to considering ideas for new management models and/or partnerships for a modernized facility within the Denver Federal Center, a new facility at another location, or renovation of an existing facility.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2017, its budget is $7.5 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 48,000 competitive proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards.

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