The Department of Defense (DoD) today announced plans to award 17 grants to Universities selected for research funding. The grants total approximately $8.5 million in fiscal year 2003 and up to $17 million per year starting in fiscal year 2004. Sixteen academic institutions will receive the grants to conduct multidisciplinary research in 12 topic areas of basic science and engineering. These grants will be made under the DoD Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) program. All awards are subject to the successful completion of negotiations between DoD research offices and the academic institutions.
MURI is a program designed to address large multidisciplinary topic areas representing exceptional opportunities for future DoD applications and technology options. The awards will provide long-term support for research, graduate students and laboratory instrumentation development that supports specific science and engineering research themes vital to national defense.
The average award will be $1 million per year over a three-year period. Two additional years of funding will be possible as options to bring the total award to five years. Out-year funding is subject to satisfactory progress in the research and the availability of funding appropriations.
Today's announcement is the result of a rigorous merit competition over many months under the DoD MURI program. In response to the MURI broad agency announcement solicitation, many letters of intent to submit proposals were received leading to 83 full proposals requesting $497 million for multidisciplinary research. After a thorough evaluation by DoD technical expert teams, 17 of these proposals were found to be suitable for funding.
The list of projects selected for fiscal year 2003 funding may be found on the Web at http://www.defenselink.mil/news .