ICS@PSU: Institute for CyberScience

Seed Funding Initiative and ACI-i


Seed Funding Initiative and Launch of ACI-i

I am pleased to announce that ICS is now accepting proposals for the ICS Seed Funding Initiative and the ICS-ACI Explore Program, which aim to further advance computational and data-enabled research at Penn State. Additionally, the Institute for CyberScience Advanced CyberInfrastructure recently launched the new ACI subsystem ACI-i. This new subsystem represents the ICS-ACI’s continued commitment to support data-intensive research needs.

ICS Seed Funding Initiative

The goal of the ICS Seed Funding Initiative is to support interdisciplinary and collaborative research for faculty groups seeking to pursue large awards from external granting agencies. The initiative aims 1) to facilitate the development of competitive proposals to external funding agencies, 2) to pursue center-scale efforts, and 3) establish centers of excellence.

We plan to make 3-5 awards available that bring together at least five or more interdisciplinary faculty members. The initiative awards funding to teams who develop big ideas centered on data, models, and simulation for deeper insights into the critical problems in science and engineering. We anticipate funding for 1 year, with typical budgets of $25,000 per year, with the ability for follow-on funding based upon performance and success potential. We expect successful awardees to submit at least one significant external center-scale proposal within three years of the award.

A portion of the budget can be used to access hardware, software, and instrumentation for computation and data-enabled research, including the new research cluster deployed by ICS-ACI. Infrastructure, such as equipment, is not allowable. Principle Investigators (PIs) need to be tenure or tenured-track professors with proven standing in their respective fields.

A Notice of Intent including a tentative title and team composition should be submitted by November 15, 2015. All proposals should be submitted by no later than November 30, 2015.

The NOI and RFP are available at: https://ics.psu.edu/what-we-do/funding/ics-seed-funding-initiative/.

ICS-ACI Explore Program

Like the Seed Funding Initiative, the ICS-ACI Explore Program also seeks to promote interdisciplinary and collaborative research with the purpose of pursuing large awards from external granting agencies. Our priority is to support faculty seeking to “explore” new research directions that represent a departure from prior or ongoing work.

Awardees receive access to ICS-ACI computing and data resources and/or science gateway for a period of 3-12 months based on an advisory faculty review. The temporary access to these resources allows PIs to investigate new ideas and compile early evidence.

All proposals should be submitted no later than December 10, 2015. Access to resources will be allocated in January 2015. Joint applications to both the ICS Seed Funding Initiative and the ICS-ACI Explore Program are encouraged.

You may find more information and the application at our site: https://ics.psu.edu/what-we-do/funding/ics-aci-explore-program/.


The computing platform ACI-i is now available and it consists of commodity compute resources with graphics rendering enabled. The new platform allows users to log in using remote desktop based utilities from any platform, gaining access to a linux desktop supported by a unified set of software packages. From the platform, users are able to run visualization tools such as MATLAB or Ansys. Users can use these visualization tools to process research results and launch interactive workflows linked against a batch queueing system.

For more information on the ACI infrastructure and subsystems, see https://ics.psu.edu/advanced-cyberinfrastructure/ics-aci-infrastructure/.

Padma Raghavan
Distinguished Professor of Computer Science and Engineering 
Associate Vice President for Research and Director of Strategic Initiatives 
Director, Institute for CyberScience

Penn State Institute for CyberScience

Help us build the future. Contact ICS at Penn State.

  • email: ics@psu.edu
  • phone: ICS-ACI Support (i-ASK Center): 814-865-4275 | General Inquiries: 814-867-1467

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