Space Science Enhancement Program 2008
Announcement of Opportunity
Table of contents
- 1. Guide to applicants
- 2. Annoncement of opportunity FAQ
- 3. Review process
- 4. SSEP 2008 results
Closing date: October 31, 2008
Guide for applicants
The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) is intending to provide funding through grants in relation to the "Space Science Enhancement Program" (SSEP) for programmatic priority areas starting in 2009. For this competition, the CSA will be concentrating on providing awards for data analysis related to CSA-sponsored Space Science missions that are either providing data at the time of release of this announcement of opportunity, have flown and produced data in the past (data from recent missions will be given preference) or data that are expected to be obtained in the near future from missions that are approved and that have a manifested launch opportunity (i.e. missions currently manifested to launch on or before 31 March 2010). The CSA SSEP is a component of the CSA Class Grant and Contribution Program to Support Awareness, Research and Training in Space Science and Technology.
This announcement is broken down into the following components that are described in detail in the sections that follow:
- Areas of programmatic priorities
- Application procedures
- Selection Committee
- Evaluation procedures
- Approval process
- Grant value and eligible costs
- Grant agreement
- Basis and timing of payments
- Intellectual Property
- CSA contact
Objectives of the SSEP
The key result expected is that Canadian scientific teams are better prepared to contribute to space science on the international scene.
The following are eligible for the program:
- Canadian universities;
- Not-for-profit Canadian organizations and foundations with a proven interest in space science.
Note that international members of the proposing team (i.e., non-Canadians or Canadians residing outside of Canada)* will be accepted, however, they cannot be funded through this competition and it must be clearly identified with supporting documentation how these members will be supported to carry out the activities identified to them in the proposal, including travel to meetings.
Eligible applications to the program will relate to space science projects and activities in areas of programmatic priority supported by CSA and will be limited to:
- End project phases, specifically, the analysis of the data from CSA - supported missions produced by space science instruments, normally either in orbit, having recently flown or that are manifested to be launched in the near future, together with the dissemination of ensuing results.
"Missions" include those scientific investigations that utilize high-altitude balloons; aircraft, including those in parabolic flight; sounding rockets; the International Space Station; space shuttles; recoverable satellites; free-flying satellites; and CSA-supported analogue programs including networks of ground-based instruments that support space missions (e.g., CGSM, bed-rest studies, etc.), but excluding studies related to the Canadian Analogue Research Network (CARN) that are funded under other SSEP announcements. Theoretical studies, data assimilation and modeling activities that are not specifically related to a CSA-supported space "mission" as defined above will be deemed non-eligible as is any analysis of data from non CSA-supported Space Science missions of international partners and agencies.
Areas of programmatic priority
Applications representing all of the areas of priority are welcome and will be evaluated by the CSA selection committee.
Scientific analysis of Canadian mission datasets from currently (or recently completed or soon to be launched) orbiting or balloon-borne space astronomy missions or instruments supported by the CSA Space Science program. Current, recent and expected space astronomy missions supported by the CSA or with substantial CSA involvement include: Odin, MOST, FUSE, BLAST, Herschel, Planck and ASTROSAT. Note that support for JWST data analysis will not be considered by this announcement.
Scientific analysis of Canadian mission datasets from currently (or recently completed or soon to be launched) space exploration missions or instruments supported by the CSA Space Science program. Current, recent and expected space exploration missions supported by the CSA or with substantial CSA involvement include: the MET package on the Phoenix mission, and the Alpha-Particle-X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) investigation on NASA's Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). To be eligible for grants, applicants must be members of the science teams for these missions at Canadian universities.
Scientific analysis of Canadian mission datasets from currently (or recently completed or soon to be launched) solar-terrestrial science missions or instruments supported by the CSA Space Science program. Current, recent and expected solar-terrestrial sciences missions led by the CSA or with substantial CSA involvement include: THEMIS, JOULE-II, CGSM and e-POP. Note that proposals addressing synergies between two or more of these missions will be given priority.
Scientific analysis of Canadian mission datasets from currently (or recently completed or soon to be launched) atmospheric sciences missions or instruments supported by the CSA Space Science program. Current, recent and expected atmospheric sciences missions led by the CSA or with substantial CSA involvement include: MOPITT, OSIRIS, SciSat-1 (ACE and MAESTRO) and CloudSat. Note that proposals addressing synergies between two or more of those missions will be given priority.
Scientific analysis of Canadian mission datasets from currently (or recently completed or soon to be launched) physical sciences missions or instruments supported by the CSA Space Science program. Current, recent and expected physical sciences missions led by the CSA or with substantial CSA involvement include: SCCO, IVIDIL, BCAT, NEQUISOL, ICAPS-IPE, and CIMEX.
Scientific analysis of Canadian mission datasets from currently (or recently completed or soon to be launched) life sciences missions or instruments supported by the CSA Space Science program. Current, recent and expected life sciences missions led by the CSA or with substantial CSA involvement include: PMDIS, CAMBIUM, CCISS, ELERAD, e-OSTEO, BISE.
Note that in all cases, applicants must provide a letter of endorsement from the mission, instrument or investigation principal investigator, unless the data are public.
Public Data: Data are considered to be public if the contract under which the data was collected specifies that the data shall be made publicly available.
Applicants must submit five paper copies of proposals, one with original signatures, to arrive at the CSA on or before 4:00 p.m. EST October 31, 2008.
Please submit your applications with supporting documentation by mail to:
Dr. David Kendall
Space Science Program
Canadian Space Agency
6767 Route de l'Aéroport
Saint-Hubert, Quebec J3Y 8Y9
Please also submit one electronic copy of the proposal (identical to the signed paper copy) before the above deadline to the address email@example.com. All proposals received will be acknowledged in writing.
Applicants must submit the following documentation:
- A document declaring all other government assistance requested or received to carry out the identified activities, and to disclose the involvement of any former public servants in any aspect of the proposed work who may be under the Conflict of Interest and Post-employment Guidelines.
A CSA SSEP Selection Committee will be struck to evaluate the proposals received. The Committee will be comprised of experts in fields of specialization of the Space Science Program. An external member of the Committee with broad experience of cross-disciplinary space science activities will chair the Committee.
All proposals will be first screened against the eligibility criteria. All proposals successfully passing this step will then be peer-reviewed for scientific merit by a minimum of three external referees. Finally, the CSA SSEP Selection Committee will evaluate all applications submitted. This latter committee will rank all applications in order of priority based on the following criteria:
It is to be noted that all proposals must satisfactorily address all four criteria, however, a minimum value for each criterion will not be imposed.
The Director General of Space Science will approve or reject an application based on recommendation of the CSA SSEP Selection Committee and available funding. The CSA President delegates this approval right.
The principal author of each proposal will receive a letter informing him/her of the results of the competition.
Grant value and eligible costs
In all cases the grant value will not exceed a maximum of $200,000 per proposal over a maximum of three years, conditional upon evidence of satisfactory progress. The overall number of grants awarded and their level will depend on the availability of funds. Since this program is cost-capped, proposals are encouraged requesting amounts smaller than the maximum in order to fund a larger number of eligible proposals. Based on the number and quality of the proposals as ranked by the CSA Selection Committee, together with the budget available for this competition, the Director General of Space Science will award full funding, partial funding or no funding to all eligible proposals.
Eligible costs will be determined for each proposal and will consist of the following:
- Direct labour salaries and benefits
- Direct materials and supplies
- Travel expenses
- Publication costs
A Grant Agreement with the recipient will set the objectives, content, financial provisions, and terms for the payments of the grants. The Minister of Industry has delegated the authority to sign, amend, and terminate the Grant Agreement to the President of the CSA, who may delegate his authority to the Director General of Space Science.
Basis and timing of payments
It is the intention of the CSA to work towards providing funding for selected proposals starting on or around 1 April 2009 (see below). Grants for this program will be paid on an annual basis. After the first year, the recipient will be evaluated annually to ensure ongoing eligibility. To this end, the recipient will submit a progress report on the anniversary of taking up the grant. The CSA Program Manager and appropriate CSA Program Scientist will assess progress reached in meeting the objectives set out in the original application by utilizing the evaluation criteria. The Director General of Space Science will consider the recommendations of the Program Manager and Program Scientist with respect to the annual evaluation of the performance of the recipient and approve continuation of the grant, terminate it, or recommend a probationary period to re-assess progress. Each recipient will be notified in writing of the outcome of the annual evaluation.
The maximum level (stacking limit) of total government assistance (federal, provincial and municipal assistance for the same eligible expenditures) for a proposal will not exceed 100% of the total eligible costs of the proposal per year. In the event that actual total government assistance to a recipient exceeds the stacking limit, it will be necessary for the CSA to adjust the level of assistance (and seek reimbursement, if necessary) so that the stacking limit is not exceeded. Grant recipients will be required to disclose all sources of government funding related to the proposal before the start of the award and at its end.
It should be noted that the current CSA Class Grant and Contribution Program to Support Awareness, Research and Training in Space Science and Technology will terminate on 31 March 2009. Thus, in order for this program to be funded beyond this point, the program must be renewed. It is the intention of the CSA to apply to have this program renewed and to include an element in the program related to providing funding to space science projects and activities in the area of data analysis. However, in the situation where the program is not renewed, or that the element of the program relating to data analysis is not renewed, or that there is a delay in obtaining the renewal of the program, it may not be possible for the CSA to provide awards in relation to this announcement for any period extending beyond 31 March 2009, or the payment of any such award may be delayed. Applicants must take notice that the Grant Agreement between successful applicants and the CSA will be worded accordingly.
Those Scientists receiving awards from this program will be required to acknowledge the funding received from the CSA in all communications and publications resulting from the support provided. A yearly progress report will be required to evaluate continued eligibility, including eligibility of costs. A final report will be required to assess program results.
When applying for grants, applicants must describe any agreements being negotiated or in place concerning the protection and disposition of intellectual property, exploitation of research results, and publications. In addition, provisions for the ownership of intellectual property resulting from the research must be included in the application and are subject to approval by the participants. Awards will be made on the condition that the parties reach an agreement on the disposition of intellectual property.
Grant duration will not exceed three years.
Ms. Thu-Oanh Nguyen
Canadian Space Agency
6767 Route de l'Aéroport
Saint-Hubert, Quebec J3Y 8Y9
SSEP 2008 FAQ
Does the term "data expected to be obtained" mean "guaranteed/approved science observations," or can one apply to fund a program which will be submitted in an upcoming call for proposals in open-time?
SSEP accepts proposals that will use existing data (recent or archived), or that will use future data from guaranteed time or from open time applications pertaining to CSA-sponsored Space Science missions. Scientific merit is the most important evaluation criterion. By virtue of the uncertainty related to obtaining "open time data," for proposals of equal "science merit," those with available data or guaranteed time may be ranked higher than proposals expecting data to be obtained from future open time competition or other non-guaranteed routes. The total number of grants awarded will be limited by the funds available. Note that requests for grants to support the data analysis from missions that are not CSA-sponsored will be deemed ineligible in this competition.
Under the section Eligibility, clarify the phrase "non-Canadians or Canadians residing outside of Canada".
This phrase has been ambiguously worded. What is meant is "anybody residing outside of Canada - non-Canadians or Canadians". Alternatively expressed, any members of proposing teams residing in Canada; i.e., Canadians or non-Canadians; may be funded by this competition.
SSEP 2008 Review process
This document defines the proposal review process of the SSEP 2008 Announcement of Opportunity (AO). The SSEP 2008 review of proposals was implemented within two parallel streams. The first stream which was conducted by Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) was a peer review of specified elements of Criteria #1, 2 & 3 (see below). This peer review process was adapted for the SSEP 2008 program. The second stream was a review of specified elements of all four criteria performed internally by CSA staff. The results of these two processes were harmonized by the Final Review Committee.
A - CSA Internal review committee - June 1-2, 2009
For the 59 proposals submitted to the SSEP 2008 AO, the CSA Internal Review Team provided ratings and comments on programmatic review of specified elements of all four criteria. These results were harmonized with the NSERC Peer Review results and provided to the Final Review Team.
CSA Internal Review Team
- William Liu - Program Scientist, Solar Terrestrial Sciences
CSA Internal Review Team Mandate
Rate proposals against elements of four criteria (30% of the total evaluation).
CSA Review Criteria
- Scientific Merit of the Proposal
- appropriateness of the proposal to space science programmatic priorities; and
- plan for distribution and dissemination of the results.
- Management Capabilities and Budgeting
- detailed budget breakdown;
- detailed schedule with milestones;
- clear description of how the work will be carried out to ensure that the planned activities will be accomplished on time and within the budget requested; and
- description of how communication between the team members will be accomplished.
- Interactions and Partnerships
- amount and level of funding supporting the proposed activity from other sources;
- ability of the participants to exploit the results to the benefit of Canada;
- Socio-Economic Benefits
- identification of new space knowledge;
- enhancement of Canada's world-class expertise in the space sciences;
- potential for the knowledge produced to provide spin-off activities;
- plan to communicate the results from the activity to the general public and other stakeholders; and
- alignment of the expected results with the Government of Canada priorities and the Science and Technology Strategy. (Ref.: www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/icgc.nsf/eng/h_00856.html).
B - NSERC Peer review - June 3-4, 2009
NSERC coordinated the portion of the evaluation pertaining to the scientific peer review on behalf of the CSA. NSERC Peer Review Team provided ratings and comments on specified elements of Criteria #1, 2 & 3. NSERC also provided a report summarizing the results which is sent directly to the Director General, Space Science.
NSERC Peer Review Team
- Dr. Glenn White - Open University and Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
NSERC Peer Review Mandate
Rate proposals against specified elements of three criteria (70% of the evaluation).
NSERC Peer Review Criteria
- Scientific Merit of the Proposal
- originality and quality of the proposal (world-class ranking);
- advancement of the space science project, mission or activity to which the proposal is contributing;
- advancement of new knowledge; the suitability of the proposed activity with respect to the objectives of the space mission to which the analysis will be applied;
- track record of the team to perform the type of analysis being proposed;
- training of highly qualified personnel; access to appropriate facilities to carry out the proposed work.
- Management Capabilities and Budgeting
- mix of expertise and the quality of the project team;
- clear identification of the responsibilities of each of the team members;
- cost effectiveness.
- Interactions and Partnerships
- extent to which the proposal builds on Canadian strengths and capabilities, and complements other Canadian initiatives;
- nature and extent of the contributions of scientists from multiple Canadian and/or foreign organizations;
- inclusion of the most appropriate expertise within the team;
- retention or bringing to Canada of outstanding scientists to work on the project (magnet for talent);
- potential for the interaction to create new partnerships that would enhance Canada's leadership position.
C - CSA SSEP 2008 Final review - July 15, 2009
The Final Review Committee (FRC) reviewed the CSA Internal Review results and the NSERC Peer Review Results. The FRC harmonized these results and made recommendations to the Space Science Management Committee.
CSA SSEP 2008 Final Review Team
- Donald Brooks (Chair, non-voting) - University of British Columbia
- Ernest R. Seaquist - University of Toronto
- Charles Lin - Environment Canada
- Keith Mitchell - University of British Columbia
- Gerry Atkinson - University of British Columbia
- Douglas Watt - McGill University
- Alain Berinstain - CSA
The Final Review Team Mandate:
- Review the scored list of proposals provided by CSA Internal Review Team and NSERC Peer Review Team;
- Highlight significant points of the evaluations;
- Discuss overarching issues;
- Agree on a final ranked list; and
- Make recommendations to the Space Science Management Committee
SSEP 2008 Results - Selected proposals
|Baillie, David L.||Life Sciences||Simon Fraser University||Next Generation Whole Genome Sequencing for Mutational Analysis of Space Flow in C. Elgans|
|Bourqui, Michel||Atmospheric Sciences||McGill University||Characterising Stratosphere-Troposphere Exchange Using OSIRIS and ACE Observations|
|Charbonneau, Paul||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Montreal||A modelling framework for the solar irradiance|
|Cogger, Leroy||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Calgary||Data Analysis for the Fast Auroral Imager on the e-POP Satellite|
|Di Francesco, James||Astronomy||University of Victoria||Revealing the Origins of Stellar Mass with Herschel Space Observatory|
|Donovan, Eric||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Calgary||The relationship between Auroral Type Auroral Physics and Magnetospheric Dynamics|
|Donovan, Eric||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Calgary||Global Evolution of the Substorm Injection|
|Donovan, Eric||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Calgary||Using Simulations and Data to Address Key Questions in Substorm Research|
|Fenrich, Frances||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Alberta||Magnetospheric Boundaries and ULF Wave Excitation|
|Fich, Michel||Astronomy||University of Waterloo||HIFI Studies of Structure in Star Forming Regions|
|Gorczynski, Reginald||Life Sciences||University of Toronto||mRNA expression analysis of 3D cultures from eOSTEO mission|
|Halpern, Mark||Astronomy||University of British Columbia||Extragalactic Science with BLAST: Understanding star formation history|
|Henein, Hani||Physical Sciences||University of Alberta||Non-Equilibrium Solidification of Al-Ni and Al-Fe droplets|
|Hughson, Richard||Life Sciences||University of Waterloo||CCISS Data Analysis|
|Jones, Dylan||Atmospheric Sciences||University of Toronto||Constraints on the variability of ozone in the upper troposhere and lower stratosphere provided by data from the OSIRIS and ACE-FTS satellite instruments|
|Kaminski, Jacek||Atmospheric Sciences||York University||Exploration of UTLS processes using OSIRIS and ACE data with extended GEM-AQ|
|Knudsen, David||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Calgary||Small Scale Structure and Energization of Ioniospheric Plasma Revealed in Epop|
|Mann, Ian R.||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of Alberta||Establishing the Triffers of Terrestrial Substorm Expansion Phase Onset|
|Martin, Peter||Astronomy||University of Toronto||Herschel Space Observatory/PLANCK Investigation of the Earliest Stages of Star Formation|
|Martin, Peter||Astronomy||University of Toronto||Planck/Herschel Space Observatory Investigations of the High-Latitude Cirrus, Foreground to Cosmic Microwave Background|
|Martin, Randall||Atmospheric Sciences||Dalhousie University||Analysis of Canadian Satellite Observations to Quantify the Influence of Lightning on Upper Tropospheric Ozone|
|Matthews, Brenda||Astronomy||University of Victoria||Searching for Other Solar Systems: An Allocated Far-infrared Unbiased Survey of the Closest Stars with Herschel Space Observatory|
|McConnell, John (Jack)||Atmospheric Sciences||York University||Biomass burning and lightning sources of emissions from ACE-FTS, OSIRIS and MOPITT satellite data using GEM-AQ in high resolution mode.|
|McNamara, Brian||Astronomy||University of Waterloo||Constraining Cold Gas and Dust in Cluster Cooling Flows: A Herschel Key Program|
|O'Neill, Norm||Atmospheric Sciences||University of Sherbrooke||Investigations of smoke and haze aerosols over the Arctic using altitude profiles from the ACE-MAESTRO sensor|
|Ruda, Harry||Physical Sciences||University of Toronto||Analysis and Characterization of nanowires grown during parabolic flights and comparision with their terrestrial grown counterparts|
|Scott, Douglas||Astronomy||University of British Columbia||Cosmic Microwave Background, Cosmology|
|Shizgal, Bernie||Solar Terrestrial Sciences||University of British Columbia||Kinetics of Neutral and Plasma Outflows|
|Sloan, James, J.||Atmospheric Sciences||University of Waterloo||A New Analysis of Combined ACE-FTS and MAESTRO Measurements|
|Strong, Kimberly||Atmospheric Sciences||University of Toronto||Studies of Partitioning and Variability of Noy using ACE, Odin, CHAM, and GEM-BACH|
|Walker, Kaley||Atmospheric Sciences||University of Toronto||Investigating the Distribution of Species in the Stratosphere and Upper Troosphere using Atmosheric Chemistry Experiment: Global and Arctic Studies|
|Whiteway, James||Space Exploration||York University||Analysis of Measurements from the Phoenix Lidar on Mars|
|Wilson, Christine||Astronomy||McMaster University||The Very Nearby Galaxies Survey (VNGS): Physical Processes in the Interstellar Medium|
|Wolf, Michael||Physical Sciences||University of British Columbia||Analysis and Modelling of Gravitational Effects on Electrochemical Thin Film Polymer Growth|
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