NSF Dear Colleague Letter: G8 Multilateral Funding Initiative “Interdisciplinary Program on Material Efficiency – A first step towards sustainable manufacturing”
Preliminary Proposal Due Date to the Call Secretariat September 30, 2011
Notification for Submission of Full Proposals November 31, 2011
Full Proposal Due Date to Call Secretariat and NSF January 27, 2012
The Directorate for Engineering and the Office of International Science and Engineering announce a new G8 Research Councils Initiative on Multilateral Research, “Interdisciplinary Program on Material Efficiency – A first step towards sustainable manufacturing.” Through a pilot collaboration, the U.S. National Science Foundation, the Canadian National Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the French Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR), the German Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS), the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR),and the United Kingdom Research Councils (RC-UK)1, will support on a competitive basis, collaborative research projects that are comprised of researchers from at least three of the partner countries. Proposals will be jointly reviewed by the participating funding organizations and successful projects are expected to demonstrate added value through multilateral collaboration. Support for U.S.-based researchers will be provided through awards made by the National Science Foundation.
The Japan Society for the Promotion of Science will serve as the Call Secretariat and will maintain the official website at http://www.jsps.go.jp/j-bottom/g8-initiative.html. Information specific to U.S. researchers will be posted at http://www.nsf.gov/od/oise/g8initiative/
Program Synopsis: Interdisciplinary Program on Material Efficiency – A first step towards sustainable manufacturing
For most materials used to manufacture equipment and products, global stocks are still sufficient to meet anticipated demand, but the environmental impacts of materials production and processing, particularly those related to energy, are rapidly becoming critical. These impacts can be ameliorated to some extent by the ongoing pursuit of efficiencies within existing processes, but demand is anticipated to double in the next 40 years, and this will lead to an unacceptable increase in overall impacts unless the total requirement for material production and processing is reduced.
Material efficiency forms part of the suite of philosophies towards sustainability and any proposal should give consideration to how the research undertaken will have wider impact in the long term on this agenda.
This Call aims to support collaborations between experts in research areas related to the global challenge of materials efficiency to address one or more of seven potential strategies for reducing material demand through material efficiency:
•modularisation and remanufacturing;
•component re-use and re-cycle;
•designing products with less material;
•rethinking products and their use;
•redesigning the manufacturing processes;
•replacement of scarce and expensive elements, notably those critical for energy applications.
The Call will support interdisciplinary projects with the potential of creating a step change in the approach taken towards the sustainable use of material resources and the contribution and impact that this will have upon the wider cradle-to-cradle design and manufacturing principles.
The Call includes within its scope the entirety of the industrial system – from material extraction, through supply chains, logistics, manufacturing, and distribution – and recognizes the global nature of that system. Proposals are expected to show how they address this global approach in a synergistic way and to justify the need for the international collaboration proposed. The Call emphasizes the potential future role of manufacturing in supporting a sustainable global economy, and encompasses all parts of the materials hierarchy.
The collaborative and interdisciplinary nature of the Call is expected to encourage proposals that bring different sets of knowledge together in a concerted effort toward solving a problem. Proposals that focus on basic materials science or current manufacturing processes in isolation are unlikely to meet the requirements.
The complete solicitation can be found at: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2011/nsf11068/nsf11068.jsp?WT.mc_id=USNSF_25&WT.mc_ev=click
Professor Lei Zuo holds an electricity-generating shock absorber in the Energy Harvesting & Mechatronic Lab at Stony Brook University.
A team headed by Lei Zuo, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering working through the Advanced Energy Technology & Research Center at Stony Brook University has won a prestigious R&D 100 Award—dubbed the “Oscar of Invention”—for the development of an energy-harvesting shock absorber that converts vibration, bumps, and motion experienced by the suspension of a vehicle or train into electric power. The regenerative shock absorber for cars can harvest over 100 watts from the vehicle vibrations under normal driving conditions.
R&D Magazine’s annual R&D 100 Awards recognize the 100 most technologically significant product innovations developed throughout the world and introduced into the marketplace over the previous year. The awards have long been a benchmark of excellence known to industry, government, and academia as proof that the product is one of the most ground-breaking of the year.
“This is a very novel idea and concept, and is an extraordinary example of the many innovative and entrepreneurial ideas that are being developed in the Advanced Energy Research and Technology Center at Stony Brook,” said Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D., President of Stony Brook University. “The R&D 100 Award is a remarkable and well-deserved distinction for Dr. Zuo and his entire team at Stony Brook.”
Dr. Zuo’s electricity-harvesting shock absorber continuously harvests vibration energy—from hundreds to thousands of watts—from the vehicle’s suspension vibration that is currently being dissipated into heat waste by the conventional oil shock absorbers. The harvested energy is used to charge the battery and power vehicle electronics and thus reduce the load of the alternator and the engine, improving the fuel efficiency of the vehicle by two to eight percent. The energy harvesting also provides further opportunity to enhance the ride comfort and road safety by adjusting the suspension damping or implementing self-powered vibration control.
“The electricity-harvesting shock absorber is made to be retrofittable to most of the current vehicles and can replace the traditional shock absorber without modification of the vehicle suspension structure,” explains Dr. Zuo, an assistant professor in the department of mechanical engineering at SBU. “The product can typically recover 100-400 watts of vibration energy from a passenger car when it’s driving at 60 m.p.h. and up to several kilowatts from trucks, rail cars and off-road vehicles.”
“If just five percent of the 256 million registered vehicles in this country adopt this technology, we will create a market of over six billion dollars,” continues Dr. Zuo. “The total energy we can recover per year from the suspensions is more than the amount produced by the Niagara Falls Power Plant.”
Since 1963, the R&D 100 Awards have identified revolutionary technologies newly introduced to the market. Many of these have become household names, helping to shape everyday life for many Americans, including the automated teller machine (1973), lab on a chip (1996), and HDTV (1998). More on the awards can be found online at http://www.rdmag.com/Awards/RD-100-Awards/R-D-100-Awards/.
Funding Your Technology-Based Startup
You’ve got the idea, you’ve got the team, you’ve got the marketing plan—so how do you get the money? Come hear our panel of investors and entrepreneurs discuss funding your technology-based startup. Please join us for light fare and networking.
July 25, 2011
Brookhaven National Laboratory
Upton, NY 11973 USA
Cost: $10 for either online or at-the-door registration.
5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Registration, refreshments, and networking
5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. “Funding your Technology-based Startup” – Panel Discussion
6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Networking with refreshments
Panel to Include:
Clayton Besch, PhD (Director, Small Business Technology Investment Fund)
Jim Chinits (CEO, Population Diagnostics Inc.)
Michael L. Faltischek (Partner, Ruskin Moscou Faltischek, P.C.)
John May (Angel Investor)
Murat Ozsu (Founder and CEO, innRoad)
Steve Winick (Top Spin Partners, VC)
Allan Cohen (Partner, Nixon-Peabody)
Event Registration (Deadline: July 21, 2011)
Go to https://www.bnl.gov/efw/ to register