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NSF 15-011

Dear Colleague Letter: Stimulating Collaboration Between United States and European Union Robotics Researchers

Dear Colleague:

This Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) is intended to stimulate collaboration between US and European Union (EU) Robotics Researchers. Over the last few years, significant investments have been made by the NSF and European Commission (EC) to develop infrastructure for doing robotics-related research. In many instances, complementary capabilities exist at US and EU institutions. Synergistic partnerships between NSF-funded and EC-funded robotics researchers can provide new opportunities for advancing the field of robotics.

In order to stimulate collaboration between US and EU robotics researchers, this DCL announces NSF's intention to provide supplemental funding to existing Robust Intelligence and National Robotics Initiative awards that are focused on robotics. We anticipate each supplement will be up to $50,000. Funds will be used to pay for the travel of US researchers, as well as stipends and travel support for graduate students and postdocs visiting their EU collaborators. Funds can also be used to pay stipends of visiting EU students and postdocs who have visiting appointments at US institutions.

Interested proposers should contact their NSF Program Directors to determine their eligibility. Proposers should include letters of support from the EU institutions outlining the scope of the proposed collaboration. Priority will be given to supplemental requests that (1) involve access to infrastructure and/or expertise not present in the US, and (2) initiate new collaborations between US and EU researchers. Supplemental funding requests will be due on January 1, 2015, with a suggested project start date of April 1, 2015.

Supplemental funding requests must be submitted through FastLane. These requests should include a 5 page project plan outlining the objectives, expected outcomes, and collaboration plan.

Areas of specific interest are outlined in the program solicitations:

NSF 14-596, Robust Intelligence (RI) Solicitation:

NSF 14-500, National Robotics Initiative (NRI) Solicitation:

For FastLane user support, call the FastLane Help Desk at 1-800-673-6188 or e-mail The FastLane Help Desk answers general technical questions related to the use of the FastLane system. When contacting FastLane, inform the technician that you are required to apply for this opportunity as a supplement.

For additional information, please contact:

Jeffrey C. Trinkle, Program Director, National Robotics Initiative, CISE/IIS. Telephone: (703) 292-8327; Email:
Gregory Chirikjian, Program Director, National Robotics Initiative, CISE/IIS. Telephone: (703) 292-7357; Email:


Suzanne Iacono
Acting Assistant Director
Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE)