Language selection

Search


Top of page

Research Opportunities in Space Science -

On this page

  1. Introduction
  2. AO objectives
  3. Eligibility criteria
  4. Applications
  5. Evaluation
  6. Funding
  7. Funding agreements
  8. Privacy Notice Statement
  9. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
  10. Appendix A: Evaluation Criteria Definition, Scale Rating, and Scores
  11. Appendix B: Eligible Activities Definition
  12. Appendix C: Objectives and priorities
  13. Appendix D: Proposal outline

Announcement of opportunity (AO)

Publication date:

Publication closing date: , 16:00 (ET).

Key dates:

Note: To optimize the available budget, the following information is subject to change between award cycles and may be updated. All AO updates relevant to a given award cycle will take place at least eight (8) weeks prior to the deadline for applications under the cycle.

2022 application and award Cycle 1

Table 1: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Co-Investigator Guest Observer Data Analysis
Atmospheric and Earth System 1 0 0
Lunar Gateway/Artemis 1 0 0
Planetary and Space Astronomy 2 0 0
Solar-Terrestrial 1 0 0

2023 application and award Cycle 2

2024 application and award Cycle 3

2025 application and award Cycle 4

2026 application and award Cycle 5

Note for all AO Cycles: It is anticipated that some grants awarded through this AO in the discipline of Lunar Gateway/Artemis Science and Technology Utilization will be extended beyond the initial 3 years. The total value of these extensions is anticipated to be $0.875M.

Summary of key information

1. Introduction

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) is pleased to announce an opportunity for the Canadian space science community to pursue research investigations that will advance the knowledge of space in the following science disciplines:

With this Announcement of Opportunity (AO), the CSA solicits proposals for projects that will take advantage of research opportunities in space science missions and projects in these domains, specifically,

This Announcement of Opportunity (AO) is consistent with the terms and conditions of the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) Class Grant and Contribution Program to Support Research, Awareness and Learning in Space Science and Technology – Research Component.

Applicants are asked to read the following AO thoroughly before submitting their applications. This AO guides the applicants through the application process, and outlines key elements, including mandatory criteria for eligibility, types of eligible projects and the selection process. In the event of any discrepancies between this AO and the individual funding agreements governing a project, the latter document(s) will take precedence.

The criteria for projects to be eligible are given in Sections 3.1, 3.2, and 3.3.

2. AO objectives

The objective of this AO is to support research activities and investigations related to missions and projects relevant to the priorities of the CSA.

The key results for the CSA expected from selected proposals are:

This solicitation is anticipated to be open for the next five (5) years (i.e. one Cycle per year) with the list of eligible projects and available funding updated when necessary, as described in Sections 3.2 and 6.1. Updates to the AO may be made up until eight (8) weeks before the deadline for applications under the cycle.

3. Eligibility criteria

In this section 3

3.1 Eligible Recipients

To be eligible, the applicant must be a Canadian university or post-secondary institution.

The researcher leading these projects must:

  • hold a PhD obtained from a recognized institution;
  • hold a permanent, term, or contract position at the applicant institution for the duration of the funding agreement. The position may be paid or unpaid. This includes Adjunct Faculty that may be employed by industry.

Note: A Lead Researcher may lead only one (1) ROSS grant at a time

These conditions must be satisfied at the time of application.

3.2 Eligible Projects

To be eligible for CSA funding, projects must consist of one or more of the following:

  • Research activities of interest to Canada related to space science and technology disciplines and their applications;
  • End project phases such as analyses of space data and the transformation of that data into useful information.

All development phases necessary for a project are eligible. Any logical breakdown or combination of these phases can constitute a funded project under this AO. However, breaking down a project into numerous phases submitted as distinct proposals to obtain more than the maximum grant or contribution under this AO is not allowed. Furthermore, the completion of a funded phase does not automatically guarantee future funding of the remaining phases. To be eligible, the activities outlined in the project must also align with at least one of the following categories:

  • Co-Investigation on an international mission or project
    • A researcher having a formal invitation and role as a Co-I on a mission or project not otherwise supported by the CSA.
  • Guest Observation via external partnership
    • A researcher having obtained observation time on a mission or instrument can apply for support to the scientific investigation.
  • Data Analysis from CSA supported instruments
    • A researcher can propose to perform data analysis that uses CSA-supported measurements as its primary data source

Proposals require supporting documents specific to the proposed activities. Detailed definitions of eligible activities can be found in Appendix B.

For a list of eligible costs, see Section 6.2.

3.3 Links to CSA Priorities

To be eligible, projects supported under this AO must contribute to investigations addressing the following CSA priorities:

  • Atmospheric and Earth-System Science
  • Lunar Gateway/Artemis Science and Technology Utilization
  • Planetary Exploration and Space Astronomy
  • Solar-Terrestrial Science

Detailed descriptions of these priorities can be found in Appendix C.

3.4 Links to G&C Program objectives

To be eligible, projects supported under this AO must contribute to the achievement of the following CSA objectives:

  • To support the development of space science and technology relevant to the priorities of the CSA;
  • To foster the continuing development of a critical mass of researchers and highly qualified people in Canada in areas relevant to the priorities of the CSA;
  • To support the creation of new knowledge, scientific studies, and research related to space.

4. Applications

In this section 4

4.1 Required documentation

Applicants must submit a completed application as described below.

The application must include the following:

  • A completed typed original application form (Word, 106 KB) signed by the Duly Authorized Representative;
  • Proof of incorporation or registration and a copy of the document(s) confirming the legal name of the applicant;
  • Letters from other funding contributors confirming their contributions (if applicable);
  • Declaration on Confidentiality, Access to Information Act and Privacy Act form signed by the duly authorized representative (refer to the Applicant Declaration on Confidentiality, Access to Information Act and Privacy Act section included in the application form); and
  • For organizations in Quebec, M-30 Supporting Documentation form completed and signed by the duly authorized representative (refer to the M-30 form for organizations in Quebec included in the application form);
  • Documentation supporting the activities proposed within the project (see Appendix B).

The application must be prepared as a single PDF-formatted file containing all of the above requested documents with all security features disabled. Please order the document with the application form and proposal first. The proposal and supporting documents must be included in the file as searchable PDF-formatted documents (PDF/A-1a or PDF/A-2a formats preferred). If there are any accessibility issues with the submitted PDF file, all consequences reside with the applicant.

Any missing supporting document or any incoherence between the requested documents and the information provided within the documents may lead to the rejection of the proposal on that sole basis.

It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that the application complies with all relevant federal, provincial, and territorial legislation and municipal bylaws.

Submission is done by first completing an account creation request at the electronic proposal portal. Please note that Google Chrome is the browser of choice for submissions. Applicants are encouraged to create their account several days before the submission deadline, in order to address any technical difficulties that could arise.

Upon account creation, the CSA will send an email with instructions on how to connect to the CSA secure filer system to allow you to upload documents securely. Applicants are strongly encouraged to upload their applications well before the submission deadline.

  • Proposals must be received at CSA no later than the closing date and time indicated at the top of this AO page.
  • Applications sent by email or as email attachments will not be accepted.
  • Incomplete applications shall not be considered.

The questions and answers related to this AO will be posted on the CSA website in the "Frequently Asked Questions" of this AO (see Section 9). CSA will respond to questions received before 17:00 ET, 10 business days prior to the closing date.

4.2 Service Standards – Complete Applications

Applicants will be notified in writing of decisions regarding their application. Selected applications will be announced on the CSA website. The CSA has set the following service standards for processing times, acknowledgement of receipt, funding decisions and payment procedures.

  • Acknowledgement: The CSA's goal is to acknowledge receipt of proposals within two (2) weeks of receiving the completed application package.
  • Decision: The CSA's goal is to respond to the proposal within twelve (12) weeks of the AO's cycle deadline and to send a grant agreement for signature within four (4) weeks after formal approval of the proposal.
  • Payment:
    The CSA's goal is to issue payment within four (4) weeks of the successful fulfillment of the requirements outlined in the grant agreement.

Compliance with these service standards is a shared responsibility. Applicants must submit all required documentation in a timely fashion. Service standards may vary by Announcement of Opportunity.

5. Evaluation

In this section 5

5.1 Eligibility Criteria

Applications must satisfy the following eligibility criteria:

  • Represents an eligible recipient as defined in Section 3.1
  • Represents an eligible project as defined in Section 3.2, 3.3 and 3.4
  • Meets program funding provisions Section 6.1

5.2 Evaluation Criteria

The evaluation committee will evaluate eligible applications according to the following criteria. These are further described in Appendix A.

Table 2: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description Score Minimum Score
A B C D
Benefits to Canada

Priority Alignment

15 10 5 0 20 pts
Merit of Project 15 10 5 0
Results Publications 10 7 4 0 12 pts
Development of HQP 10 7 4 0
Application of Results 10 7 4 0
Feasibility Methodology Feasibility 5 4 2 0 4 pts
Schedule Feasibility 5 4 2 0
Resources Research Team 10 7 4 0 8 pts
Budget 5 4 2 0
External Funding

5

4 2 0
Risk and Mitigation Risk and Mitigation 10 7 4 0 4 pts

The minimum overall score required to be considered for funding is 60 points.

5.3 Evaluation Process

Only applications that have passed the eligibility assessment listed in Section 5.1 will be given further consideration.

Once the eligibility criteria are confirmed, evaluators will assess the screened applications according to the criteria listed in Section 5.2. Evaluators shall be experts in the fields relevant to the applications and may include representatives of Canada and other countries, and representatives of other government and non-government agencies and organizations. Proposals will only be evaluated and ranked relative to others within their science discipline.

Before a final decision is made, the CSA's Program Managers responsible for this AO may seek input and advice from other organizations, including (but not limited to) federal, provincial, territorial and municipal government agencies and organizations.

For the final selection, the CSA will consider the applicants having the highest final scores. The CSA could also take into consideration factors such as a balanced grants distribution across Canada as well as a diversified representativeness among the four designated groups. We encourage you to indicate on a voluntary basis if you belong to one or more of the four following groups: women, Aboriginal People, persons with disabilities and member of visibility minority. Please visit the Employment Equity site for a complete definition of each group.

6. Funding

In this section 6

6.1 Available Funding and project Duration

The maximum annual funding per grant agreement to an eligible recipient is $75,000 per yearFootnote 11 from Category A expenses, up to a total of $225,000. Additional funds may be available for grant agreements eligible for Category B expenses in the amount of $100,000 per year, up to a total of $300,000. See Section 6.2 for a detailed list of Category A and Category B expenses.

The CSA reserves the right to reject any proposals or reduce the amount of the grants at its entire discretion.

Applicants must identify all sources of funding in their applications and confirm this information in a funding agreement if the project is selected for funding. Upon completion of a project, the recipient must also disclose all sources of funding.

The number of projects under this AO will depend on funding availability. Submitted proposals should plan to be completed within a maximum period of three (3) years.

An applicant (university or post-secondary institution) may be funded for more than one (1) project under this AO provided each project has a different Lead Researcher.

A researcher can only be the Lead Researcher for one (1) active grant under this AO at any given time. A Lead Researcher with an active grant under this AO may submit a new proposal to this AO in the final year of their existing grant so long as their existing grant will conclude prior to the commencement of the proposed work.

Approved proposals will be eligible for a total amount of government assistance (federal, provincial, territorial and municipal) of up to 100% of total project costs.

To determine the amount of funding to be allocated, consideration will be given to the availability of CSA funds, the total cost of the project, and the other confirmed sources of funds provided by other stakeholders and the applicant.

Proposals will only be evaluated and ranked relative to others within their science discipline.

6.2 Eligible Costs

Eligible costs are direct expenses that are associated with the delivery of the approved project and that are required to achieve the expected results of the project. Expenses will be covered subject to the applicant signing a funding agreement, in the form of a grant, with the CSA.

Category A Expenses: It is expected that all projects will be eligible for Category A Expenses and these expenses will be sufficient to complete the majority of projects.

  • Access fees;
  • Accommodation and meal allowances;
  • Acquisition, development and printing of materials;
  • Acquisition or rental of equipment Footnote 12;
  • Consultant services;
  • Costs related to obtaining security clearance;
  • Data acquisition;
  • Data management;
  • Laboratory analysis services;
  • License and permit fees;
  • Marketing and printing services;
  • Materials and supplies;
  • Overhead (administrative) costs (not to exceed 20% of eligible costs for universities);
  • Participation fees at conferences, committees and events;
  • PST, HST and GST net of any rebate to which the recipient is entitled and the reimbursement of any taxes for goods and services acquired in a foreign country net of any rebate or reimbursement received in the foreign country;
  • Publication and communication services;
  • Registration fees;
  • Salaries and benefits;
  • Training;
  • Translation services;
  • Travel Footnote 13; and
  • Tuition fees.

Category B Expenses: It is understood that life sciences work with living organisms (including human subjects) often entails special requirements and additional costs. Category 'B' is reserved for accommodating such situations. The applicant should provide a fully itemized justification for the additional budget required to perform the proposed work.

  • Additional expenses for the following eligible costs (e.g. pre & post-flight data collection, sample preparation and recovery, crew training)
    • Travel;
    • Accommodation and meal allowances;
  • Additional expenses for the following eligible costs (e.g. personnel, laboratory consumables, rental of specialized measurement systems such as MRI scanner time)
    • Laboratory analysis services;

7. Funding agreements

In this section 7

7.1 Payments

The CSA and each successful applicant (the recipient) will sign a funding agreement. This is a condition for any payment made by the CSA with respect to the approved project.

Payments will be made in a lump sum or instalments as described in the signed agreement. Grant funding agreements will include a clause stipulating the recipient's obligation to confirm—once a year in the case of multi-year agreements—their eligibility for the G&C Program – Research Component and inform the CSA in writing of any changes to the conditions used in determining their eligibility for this component.

7.2 Audit

The recipient of a funding agreement shall keep proper records of all documentation related to the funded project, for the duration of the project and for six (6) years after the completion date of the project, in the event of an audit. This documentation shall be available upon request.

7.3 Conflict of Interest

In the funding agreement, the recipient will certify that any current or former public office holder or public servant it employs complies with the provisions of the relevant Conflict of Interest and Post-Employment Code for Public Office Holders and the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector respectively.

7.4 Intellectual Property

All intellectual property developed by the recipient in the course of the project shall vest in the recipient.

7.5 Organizations in Quebec

An organization in Quebec whose operations are partially or fully funded by the province of Quebec may be subject to the Act Respecting the Ministère du Conseil exécutif, R.S.Q., Chapter M-30.

Under Sections 3.11 and 3.12 of this Act, certain entities/organizations, as defined in the meaning of the Act, such as municipal bodies, school bodies, or public agencies, must obtain authorization from the Secrétariat du Québec aux relations canadiennes (SQRC), as indicated by the Act, before signing any funding agreement with the Government of Canada, its departments or agencies, or a federal public agency.

Consequently, any entity that is subject to the Act is responsible for obtaining such authorization before signing any funding agreement with the Government of Canada.

Quebec applicants must complete, sign and include the M-30 Supporting Documentation form with their application.

7.6 Performance Measurement

The CSA will ask the recipients to report on certain aspects of their projects such as:

  • Knowledge Creation
    • Knowledge production (including publications)
    • Presentations
    • Intellectual property (including patents)
  • Capacity Building
    • Project's research team (including highly qualified personnel supported)
  • Collaboration
    • Partners' contributions
    • Partnerships
    • Multidisciplinarity

7.7 Open Access Publications

In the event that publications result from the project, the CSA wishes to promote the dissemination of findings that result from the projects it funds as quickly and to the greatest number of people as possible. Improved access to scientific results not only allows scientists to use a broader range of resources and knowledge, but also improves research collaboration and coordination, strengthens citizen engagement and supports the economy.

Thus, the CSA promotes the use of open access publication and archiving by recipients in order to facilitate the widest dissemination of findings that results from its funded projects. Thus, recipients are invited to publish, in a timely matter, their articles by using one of the following methods:

  1. Accessible online repository (institutional or disciplinary) so that the publication is freely accessible.
  2. Journal offering open access to articles.

It should be noted that these two methods are not mutually exclusive and that recipients are encouraged to use both.

Finally, the CSA wishes to receive, as a courtesy, a copy of the publications (if not freely accessible) or the hyperlink (if freely accessible) and its digital object identifier (DOI). These will be used to improve accessibility by including them in the CSA publications directory.

8. Privacy Notice Statement

The CSA manages and protects the information provided by the applicant under the Privacy Act and the Access to Information Act. By submitting your personal information, you consent to its collection, use and disclosure in accordance with the following Privacy Statement, which explains how the information about the applicant will be processed.

The information is collected under the CSA Class Grants and Contributions Program in Support of Awareness, Research and Learning - Research Component (ASC PPU 045) and Awareness and Learning Component (ASC PPU 040) . This information will be used for administration and application evaluation purposes. Personal information (such as name, contact information and biographical information) will be kept for 6 years and destroyed. According to the Privacy Act, any individual may, upon request,

  1. have access to his or her personal data and
  2. request correction of the incorrect information.

Applicants should also note that information relating to the Funding Agreement could be disclosed publicly in accordance with the laws, policies and directives of the Government of Canada.

For additional information regarding this statement, please contact:

Office of Access to Information and Privacy
Canadian Space Agency
Tel.: 450-926-4866
E-mail: asc.aiprp-atip@asc-csa.gc.ca

9. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

It is the responsibility of the applicants to obtain clarification of the requirements contained herein, if necessary, before submitting an application.

For any questions related to the AO, applicants shall use the following generic email address ROSS@asc-csa.gc.ca. Questions and answers related to this AO will be posted on the CSA website in the Frequently Asked Questions section of this AO. CSA will respond to questions received before 17:00 ET, 10 business days prior to the closing date of any given cycle.

  • Question 1: Who is eligible to apply for this AO?

    Answer 1: From Section 3.1 of this AO: To be eligible, the applicant must be a Canadian university or post-secondary institution.

    The Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials (CICIC) maintains a directory of recognized schools in Canada.

  • Question 2: As presented in section B.1 Co-Investigator of international mission, can a mission funded by a private company be eligible?

    Answer 2: In the context of the Co-Investigator activities in this AO, eligible missions must be developed by an organization capable of doing so. This includes both governmental space agencies as well as privately owned space companies.

  • Question 3: What types of work can be eligible under the Co-Investigator activity?

    Answer 3: See section B.1 for a list of typical Co-Investigator activities supported under this AO.

  • Question 4: How do I request an account for the electronic proposal portal mentioned in Section 4.1?

    Answer 4: Account creation can be requested at this URL. A link to this URL has also been added to Section 4.1.

Appendix A: Evaluation Criteria Definition, Scale Rating, and Scores

In this sectionappendix A

Scoring and weights

Each criterion will be rated on a letter scale from A to D, with A being the highest score. A numerical weight is associated with each letter.

There is an overall minimum score of 60 to pass, as well an individual minimum requirements on all criteria individually. The applicant is advised to read Evaluation Criteria carefully when preparing the proposal.

1. Benefits to Canada

  • Maximum: 30
  • Minimum: 20

1.1 Priority Alignment

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate how well the proposal aligns with the CSA priorities selected by the applicant. Only one set of priorities may be chosen; the selected priority is marked on the AO application form. The CSA priorities are described in Appendix C.

Table 3: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposal makes no mention of, and does not align with any of the chosen CSA priorities. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposal superficially relates to topics outlined in the chosen CSA priorities. (Score: C=5)
Good The proposal specifically references elements of the chosen CSA priorities, and aligns with at least one of those priorities. (Score: B=10)
Excellent The proposal is central to the chosen CSA priorities. It references and aligns well with multiple priorities therein. (Score: A=15)

1.2 Merit of Project

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate if the proposal demonstrates the proposed work to be innovative, impactful, and novel.

Table 4: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposed work is not original and/or has no conceivable impact on the relevant field of study. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposed work contains few new ideas of significance. This work will have minor impact to the relevant field of study. (Score: C=5)
Good The proposed work is original. It will meaningfully contribute to the relevant field of study. (Score: B=10)
Excellent The proposed work will address key questions and significantly advance the relevant field of study. (Score: A=15)

2. Results

  • Maximum: 30
  • Minimum: 12

2.1 Publications

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate the number and quality of peer-reviewed publications anticipated to result from the proposed work and the dissemination plan. There is no set goal for the number of publications, as the appropriate number and format for publication varies with both field of study as well as type of activity proposed.

Table 5: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposal does not include plans for publication or science dissemination. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposal includes one or more scientific publications and conference presentations and these appear feasible. (Score: C=4)
Good The proposal includes publications and conference presentations and demonstrates a strong commitment to science dissemination. Publications and presentations appear feasible and are likely to raise Canada's profile in the research field. (Score: B=7)
Excellent The proposal includes a well thought out and structured scientific publications and dissemination plan that demonstrates a strong commitment to science dissemination. The scientific publication and dissemination plan appear feasible and is likely to raise Canada's profile in the broader research field considerably. Resulting data products (where relevant) will be delivered to a public database in a timely manner. (Score: A=10)

2.2 Development of Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP)

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate to what degree graduate students and early-career researchers will contribute to the proposed research. Proposals should include a development plan that describes how the HQP will be mentored to acquire the desired competencies. In this context, early-career researchers must have completed their most recent degree within the past five years, and must hold a bachelor's degree.

Table 6: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor Graduate students and/or early-career researchers will play no part the proposed work. (Score: D=0)
Average Graduate students and/or early-career researchers will play a minor role in the proposed work. (Score: C=4)
Good Graduate students and/or early-career researchers will play a significant role in the proposed work. (Score: B=7)
Excellent Graduate students and/or early-career researchers will play a central role in the proposed work. The proposal presents an approach that explicitly supports EDI (equity, diversity and inclusion) goals. (Score: A=10)

2.3 Application of Results

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate the likelihood that the proposed work will provide a near-term benefit to the relevant stakeholders. In this context stakeholder could be government agencies, the scientific community, or the greater mission that the proposed project is supporting.

Table 7: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposal does not demonstrate how the proposed work will benefit the stakeholders. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposal demonstrates that the proposed work has the potential to benefit someday the stakeholder. (Score: C=4)
Good The proposal demonstrates that the proposed work will benefit the stakeholders in the near future. (Score: B=7)
Excellent The proposal demonstrates that the proposed work will immediately and significantly benefit the stakeholders. (Score: A=10)

3. Feasibility

  • Maximum: 10
  • Minimum: 4

3.1 Methodology Feasibility

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate how appropriate the proposed methodology is for achieving the goals of the proposed work.

Table 8: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposed methodology is inappropriate for the goals of the proposal. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposed methodology is likely to achieve some of the proposal's goals. (Score: C=2)
Good The proposed methodology is likely to achieve most of the proposal's goals. (Score: B=4)
Excellent The proposed methodology is likely to achieve all of the proposal's goals. (Score: A=5)

3.2 Schedule Feasibility

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate how well the proposal demonstrates that the proposed work will be completed within the duration of the grant.

Table 9: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposal does not include a work schedule. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposed work schedule is either unreasonable or does not include sufficient detail to judge accurately. (Score: C=2)
Good The proposed work schedule is mostly complete and reasonable. However, it is unclear if all proposed work will be completed during the grant. (Score: B=4)
Excellent The proposed work schedule is complete and reasonable. All goals listed in the proposal will likely be completed during the grant (Score: A=5)

4. Resources

  • Maximum: 20
  • Minimum: 8

4.1 Research team

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate the expertise of the research team in fields relevant to the proposed work.

Table 10: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The research team has little or no experience in the relevant fields of study. (Score: D=0)
Average The research team has experience in related fields. However, it is missing several skillsets key to completion of the proposed work. (Score: C=4)
Good The research team has some experience in the relevant fields of study, and is well suited for the proposed work. (Score: B=7)
Excellent The research team has significant experience in all fields relevant to the proposed research, and contains world-class expertise in certain domains. In support of EDI (equity, diversity and inclusion), at least one member of the research team indicates that they belong to one or more of the four following groups: women, Aboriginal People, persons with disabilities and member of visibility minority. (Score: A=10)

4.2 Budget

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate if the budget provided with the proposal is complete and feasible.

Table 11: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposal does not include a budget. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposed budget appears reasonable but does not include sufficient detail to judge accurately. (Score: C=2)
Good The proposed budget is mostly complete and reasonable. The amount requested is reasonable for completion of the proposed work. (Score: B=4)
Excellent The budget in the proposal provides sufficient detail to describe accurately the use of the requested funds. The amount requested is reasonable for completion of the proposed work. (Score: A=5)

4.3 External funding

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate how much external funding (including in-kind contributions) is available for the proposed work.

Table 12: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor No external funding is available for the proposed work. (Score: D=0)
Average The research team has access to external funding equal to or greater than the 25% of the funding requested from the CSA. (Score: C=2)
Good The research team has access to external funding equal to or greater than the 50% of the funding requested from the CSA. (Score: B=4)
Excellent The research team has access to external funding equal to or greater than the funding requested from the CSA. (Score: A=5)

5. Risk and mitigation

  • Maximum: 10
  • Minimum: 4

The purpose of this criterion is to evaluate how well the proposal identifies potential risks associated with the proposed scope of work, as well as mitigation strategies for those risks. Possible risks could include difficulty hiring appropriate HQP, loss of HQP to the project, difficulty acquiring needed parts, delay in mission launch, change in data availability, etc.

Table 13: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Poor The proposal does not include a risk analysis and mitigation strategy. (Score: D=0)
Average The proposal lists at least one credible risk to the completion of the proposed work, including an effective mitigation strategy for that risk. (Score: C=4)
Good The proposal lists credible risks to the completion of the proposed work, including effective mitigation strategies for those risks identified. However, the proposal has omitted at least one significant risk to the proposed work that is apparent to the reviewer. (Score: B=7)
Excellent The proposal lists effective mitigation strategies for all risks to the completion of the proposed work. The proposal has not omitted any significant risks to the proposed work that are apparent to the reviewer. (Score: A=10)

Evaluation score

  • Maximum score 100
  • Minimum passing score 60

Appendix B: Eligible Activities Definition

In this sectionappendix A

This AO supports a variety of activities. The categories listed below separate types of activities based on mission phase and supporting document requirements. Applicants should explicitly state in their cover letter what type of activities are proposed within their project. In this appendix, the list of missions ineligible for Co-Investigator activity and the list of missions to be prioritized for Guest Observer activities may be updated. All AO updates relevant to a given award cycle will take place at least eight (8) weeks prior to the cycle deadline.

1. Co-Investigator of international mission

To meet eligibility with this activity, the project lead of the proposal must have received a formal invitation to participate as a Co-Investigator (Co-I) of an international mission that has been selected (approved) by its lead agency for concept study or development. A Co-I is a member of the mission science team with a defined role on the mission and contributing unique expertise and/or providing capabilities needed for achieving the science goals. A Co-I must have a well-defined role in the mission investigation, science team, or consortium, and serve under the direction of a mission or instrument Principal Investigator (PI). It is understood that certain eligible missions may not use the term "Co-I" (for example, Member of the Science Team).

Typical mission Co-I responsibilities may include a role in instrument calibration, data product generation, science requirements validation, science model development, strategic science planning or science operations planning. In return for their commitment to these roles, Co-Is also participate in science analysis activities within the science team as agreed with the mission / instrument PI and according to mission Rules of the Road that define authorship of mission publications and data sharing.

Missions for which CSA has an existing agreement(s) for science team participation and support are ineligible under this AO. The following table lists examples of mission ineligible under this AO for co-investigator activity:

Table 14: Summary table of evaluation criteria
Criteria Description
Atmospheric & Earth-System
  • Aqua
  • Aura
  • CALIPSO - Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation
  • CloudSat – Cloud Satellite
  • OMPS - Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite
  • OCO - Orbiting Carbon Observatory
  • OSIRIS on Odin
  • RCM - RADARSAT Constellation Mission
  • SCISAT - Scientific Satellite
  • Sentinel
  • SMAP - Soil Moisture Active Passive
  • SWOT - Surface Water and Ocean Topography
  • Terra
Lunar Gateway/Artemis Utilization
  • CANS (Canadian Active Neutron Spectrometer)
Planetary Exploration & Astronomy
  • Astrosat
  • BRITE - BRIght Target Explorer
  • JWST – James Webb Space Telescope
  • XRISM - X-Ray Imaging and Spectroscopy Mission XGS and GO
  • MSL – Mars Science Laboratory
  • OSIRIS-REx - Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer
  • CSA Lunar Rover Mission
Solar-Terrestrial
  • CASSIOPE - Canadian Cascade, SmallSat, and Ionospheric Polar Explorer
  • RADICALS - RADiation Impacts on Climate and Atmospheric Loss Satellite
  • SMILE - Solar wind Magnetosphere Ionosphere Link Explorer
  • Swarm
  • THEMIS - Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms

The above table of missions ineligible under this AO for co-investigator activity is subject to change based on mission status.

To meet eligibility with this activity, the Proposal must include

  • A letter signifying that the mission of interest has been funded for concept study or development or is currently in operations by an agency other than the CSA.
  • A letter of invitation to participate as a co-investigator in the above-mentioned mission. This letter should briefly summarize the roles and responsibilities of the Co-I. The letter of invitation can be contingent on the success of this proposal.

2. Guest Observation via external partnership

Projects meeting eligibility with this activity require an existing agreement with a partner external to the CSA for observation time, guest mission participation, and/or scheduling experiments. Existing agreements can take the form of (but are not limited to):

  • a letter of invitation from the mission/instrument PI confirming that the Lead Researcher of the proposal will be granted observation time, will be able to schedule experiments, or is otherwise invited to participate in the mission in order to carry out the propose work.
  • a notice of selection by a competitive processes for a mission/instrument external to the CSA.

Examples of upcoming external competitive processes that will be prioritized by the CSA in the upcoming cycle are:

  • No external competitive processes have been identified for the upcoming cycle

To meet eligibility with this activity, the proposal must include:

  • A letter demonstrating the existing agreement with a partner external to the CSA.

3. Data Analysis of CSA supported instruments

Projects meeting eligibility with this activity use observations from CSA-supported instruments as a significant data source. To meet eligibility with this activity, the proposal must include:

  • A list of CSA-supported instruments that will be used as a primary data source in the project.
  • A letter demonstrating the availability of the scientific data needed for the proposal if that data is not openly available. This should take the form of a letter from the PI(s) of the instrument(s) in question that the needed data will be made available to the Lead Researcher of the proposed work. Open data is defined as structured data that is machine-readable, freely shared, used and built on without restrictions.

Appendix C: Objectives and Priorities

In this sectionappendix A

Projects submitted to this AO must align with one of the following priority categories. Applicants should mark on their application form with which science discipline their project aligns. Applicants should then demonstrate within the body of their proposal the alignment of their project with their chosen set of priorities for the science discipline, as per point-rated evaluation criterion 1.1 in Appendix A.

1. Atmospheric and Earth-System Science

Projects that align with Atmospheric and Earth System Science priorities should help advance the national and international priorities defined by Canada's adherence to various agreements and treaties and should provide benefits to the Canadian population. They should support:

  • The quantitative monitoring of relevant variables as required by national and international laws, treaties, agreements and priorities; and/or
  • Emergency management, mitigation, environmental and human health studies, ultimately contributing to the safety of human life and the prevention of economic losses from extreme events and climate change.

The relevant CSA Atmospheric and Earth-System Science goal is to 'advance the understanding of physical and chemical processes in the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, biosphere, and geosphere', particularly

  • Transfer this new knowledge to government where it improves air quality, climate, hydrological, agricultural and other environmental prediction system and services.
  • Increase data assimilation capacity that will contribute to developing atmospheric, oceanic, and surface prediction and warning systems, and contribute to characterize pollutant and greenhouse gas sources, sinks, and trends.
  • Develop Earth System Models including the atmosphere, ocean, ice, land, vegetation and other components and their interactions, through collaboration between academia and government departments.

Detail on current Canadian Atmospheric objectives and priorities can be found in the document ' Canadian Atmospheric Science Roadmap'. The goals listed in this document are a summary of the aforementioned roadmap, generalized to include priorities relevant to the Earth System Sciences. Proposals must demonstrate traceability to this document.

2. Lunar Gateway/Artemis Science and Technology Utilization

Gateway/Artemis utilization will be implemented through a multilateral working group, the Gateway Utilization Coordination Panel (GUCP). The GUCP has established overarching strategic objectives:

  1. Enable lunar related science
    • Enable return of lunar surface samples to Earth
    • Test and demonstrate technologies that enable surface science
    • Conduct scientific research of the Moon from Gateway/Artemis
  2. Prepare for Mars and deep space exploration
    • Advance knowledge of how to support safe, productive human space travel beyond low Earth orbit
    • Expand experience in spacecraft technologies that enable deep space operations
    • Investigate environmental impacts on biology, materials, and technology
  3. Conduct science/research unique to Gateway/Artemis's deep space location
    • Study the natural environment at Gateway/Artemis
    • Characterize the induced environment at Gateway/Artemis
    • Conduct heliophysics investigations
    • Conduct astrophysics and fundamental physics investigations
    • Conduct space biology and life science research
    • Advance deep space health science
  4. Engage the public and inspire future generations
    • Host public outreach activities
    • Engage students in STEM-related fields and inspire next generation STEM leaders

Technology Working Group (TWG) has generated a report dealing with Critical Technology Needs that identifies and maps the essential enhanced and new technologies required for human and robotics exploration of the vicinity and surfaces of the Moon and Mars. A summary of these needed technologies and thus opportunities for potential Canadian technology contributions that are mission critical, highly visible and can evolve into signature technologies and strategic assets for Canada's space industry is available on the ISECG website.

The Canadian Space Strategy lays out the high-level objectives for Canada's investments in space activities: enabling scientific opportunities and global partnerships, allowing Canadian researchers to perform observations in fields of national strategic importance, improving our understanding of solar storms and their effects on astronauts and terrestrial infrastructure and improving remote medicine and health care.

CSA's Business Need for GU can be defined as follows: the CSA will make Gateway a science laboratory and a testbed for new technologies, as well as use this opportunity to fund research seeking to keep astronauts healthy. CSA will privilege activities that are best suited for being implemented in the lunar environment. Said activities will prepare human space exploration for Mars and beyond, and have a high potential for Earth benefits.

Successful proposals must address this Business Need. Additional context for GU is available at Lunar Gateway Science and Technology Utilization context. In this AO, 'Artemis' refers to studies that meet the above high-level objectives, but are part of non-Gateway elements of the NASA Artemis program (e.g. Orion).

3. Planetary Exploration and Space Astronomy

The relevant CSA Space Exploration goal is to 'Gain knowledge about the solar system and the Universe', particularly:

  • The origin and evolution of the solar system: Identifying the characteristics of the asteroids and comets that form the building blocks of the solar system, and discover the evolutionary history of the planets, their moons, and their atmospheres.
  • Habitability and life detection: Determining if life is, or ever was, present beyond Earth, focusing on astrobiological investigations of environments that support (or supported) life, identifying exoplanets and characterizing their atmospheres, and searching for possible biosignatures.
  • Origin and evolution of the Universe: Explain the properties of the observable Universe, of its hidden dark matter and energy components, and how the Universe evolved to its current state.
  • Stars, galaxies and planets: Study the processes of formation and evolution of galaxies, stars and planets and of the baryonic matter.
  • Physics in extreme conditions: Investigate phenomena in extreme physical conditions observations such as in the environments of black holes and neutron stars.

Detail on current Canadian planetary science and space astronomy objectives and priorities can be found in the document 'Canadian Space Exploration: Science and Space Health Priorities for the Next Decade'. Proposals must demonstrate traceability to this document.

4. Solar-Terrestrial Science

The relevant CSA Solar-Terrestrial Sciences goal is to advance understanding of the physical processes that generate space weather, particularly:

  • How the Sun varies: Investigating solar structures and physical processes, and how those processes influence the solar wind and the space environment.
  • Physical processes controlling the space environment: Investigating processes for mass, energy, and momentum transport within the space environment, and how those processes couple the magnetosphere, ionosphere, and atmospheres.
  • How space weather affects society and human activities: Exploring the impact of solar weather on terrestrial weather and climate, ground-based infrastructure, communication, and satellite operations, as well as how to mitigate these impacts.

Detail on current Canadian solar-terrestrial science objectives and priorities can be found in the document ' Canadian Solar-Terrestrial Science Roadmap'. Proposals must demonstrate traceability to this document.

Appendix D – Proposal outline

In this sectionappendix A

The proposal is a detailed description of the proposed project that will be assessed according to the evaluation criteria (Section 5.2 Evaluation criteria and Appendix A – Evaluation Criteria Definition, Scale Rating, and Scores). The proposal must include the three sections identified below and must not exceed ten (10) pages in length; any additional pages may be removed. The section descriptions are provided to aid the applicants in writing their proposals. Note that each evaluation criterion is associated with one or more sections; when assessing a criterion. The title page, table of contents, references, curriculum vitae (CVs), letters, and application form are not included in the page limit.

Summary (approx. one page)

This summary is a self-contained description of the activity that would result if the proposal were funded. The summary must identify the project objectives, introduce the approach to be used, and clearly demonstrate that the project is eligible under the terms of the AO. As far as possible, the summary should be understandable to a scientifically literate lay reader.

The information provided in this section will be used in determining whether the application satisfies the screening criteria (see Section 4 of the application form).

Scientific and technical description (approx. seven pages)

This section of the proposal describes the scientific objectives of the proposed project and the methodology to be used in conducting the research. The description relates the research and approach to the current scientific and technical developments, supported by references to the literature pertinent to the proposal. The methodology describes the relationship between the data source(s), the analysis method(s), and the proposed model(s). This section should also demonstrate the relevance of the research to the objective of the CSA's objectives and priorities (see Appendix C – Objectives and priorities).

The information provided in this section will be used in assessing the following criteria: Benefits to Canada, Results, and Feasibility (see Appendix A –  Evaluation Criteria Definition, Scale Rating, and Scores).

Resources (approx. two pages)

This section of the proposal describes the resources of the proposed project, including the team, complementary funding sources, and in-kind contributions, and how they would be managed. The description identifies the pertinent expertise, the roles, and the expected contributions of the team members to the project, referring to CVs as needed. Note that the team is limited to five (5) team members (including the leading researcher); any additional team members may be dropped from the provided list of team members. Co-Is must be qualified to undertake research independently. They may be collaborators from Government or Industry that contribute to the overall intellectual direction of the research project and bring their own resources to the collaboration. The diversified representativeness of the team may be described in this section (see 5.3 Evaluation process). The description also includes a project work plan that describes how the research team and the project would be managed and the availability of the equipment and infrastructure as well as a discussion of the risks and strategies for their mitigation. The description of funding sources and in-kind contributions refers to the Budget page of the application as needed. The estimated value of the time that team members will spend on the project should be included in the budget as in-kind contributions.

The information provided in this section will be used in assessing the following criteria: Resources, Risk and mitigation, and Feasibility (see Appendix A – Evaluation Criteria Definition, Scale Rating, and Scores).

Date modified: