Montana NASA EPSCoR 2025 Research Group Call for Pre-proposals

Pre-proposals submission closed August 23, 2024

Download PDF of this solicitation


The purpose of this pre-proposal process is to determine which single Montana group  will be selected to submit a full proposal to NASA for the federal FY 2025 NASA EPSCoR Research Group Award opportunity. Montana NASA EPSCoR has been informed that NASA will issue the solicitation on or near October 14, 2024, with proposals due January 27, 2024. Research Group awards are for three years and up to $750,000 with a 50% non-federal cost share requirement. Funds do not need to be spent evenly over the life of the grant. Funded teams and their respective departments and colleges provide cost share, which is usually made up of a combination of faculty research time, graduate student tuition waivers, and actual additional funding.

All interested faculty groups at Montana institutions of higher education are invited to submit a pre-proposal. Pre-proposals are reviewed by external experts as well as a panel of Montana university administrative-level stakeholders. The final decision is made by the Montana University System research officials. We expect to notify the chosen group by mid-October 2024.

Research groups can include team members from more than one Montana campus. Groups can also include team members from other EPSCoR jurisdictions, but they cannot include team members from non-EPSCoR states. There is no US citizenship requirement for team members or funded students.


Goal 1.  Bring the capabilities of Montana’s nationally competitive researchers to the attention of NASA.

Goal 2.  Build infrastructure to enhance Montana’s capabilities and expertise in areas of importance to NASA, focusing on institutions of higher learning.

Goal 3.  Use EPSCoR sponsored research to strengthen partnerships with Montana’s high-tech companies and drive the growth of Montana's aerospace-related economy.

Goal 4.  Focus on building nationally prominent, competitive research groups at Montana's major universities while also providing collaborative opportunities to faculty members at smaller institutions.


  • The focus of NASA EPSCoR Research Group awards is to fund research that NASA currently wants performed. Excellent science or engineering is not sufficient. Therefore, all Research Group pre-proposals should include the strongest possible evidence that the group has active, well-established ties to researchers at NASA Centers. Involved NASA collaborators/colleagues will be expected to be knowledgeable about the proposed research program and should be willing to act as advocates for funding of the proposal. NASA’s current areas of interested are available at:
  • Pre-proposals should demonstrate multidisciplinary collaboration. Multidisciplinary research might look different in engineering vs. science but, within reason for the proposed work, teams with larger varieties in investigator areas of expertise are favored by NASA.
  • Pre-proposals must show that sufficient cost share sources are available. Information about calculating cost share is available at
  • At the jurisdiction level, NASA’s stated intention is to “contribute to the overall research infrastructure, science and technology capabilities, and economic development of the jurisdiction.”


All pre-proposal sections: 8.5x11” pages; at least 12-point font; one inch margins.


Pre-proposal sections

page limit

Cover page


Table of contents







as needed

Biographical Sketches

2 for each investigator

Letters of support

as needed

Budget and cost share description


Pre-proposals will be reviewed based on the following key items.

  • Science/technical merit. Describe the scientific and/or technical merit of the proposed research, unique and innovative methods, approaches, concepts, or advanced technologies.
  • NASA alignment. Describe the current NASA mission(s) and NASA needs your research program addresses. List which recent NASA solicitations are relevant to your work, to indicate follow-on proposal options. Identify NASA personnel (names and locations) that are involved in your proposed research, including the level of existing and planned collaborations.
  • Montana impact. Explain how the work will build new connections for NASA-related science and/or engineering research in the field and in Montana, positively impact Montana faculty, and develop competitiveness for follow-on NASA funding. Also include project impact on your institution’s research goals, project contribution to the state's overall economic development [optional], and connections with Montana industry [optional].
  • Research Group membership. Describe the role of each investigator. Highlight NASA involvement and connections.
  • Evaluation. Describe intended outcomes and metrics. Use of milestones and timetables is recommended.
  • Budget. Include a basic high-level budget and list of available cost share sources. Amount and stability of cost share will be taken into consideration in the review.

Letters of support from Department Head(s) or equivalent are required. These letters should include a statement about available cost share.

Letters of support from NASA collaborators/supporters are strongly encouraged.


All groups:

  • Pre-proposal submission closed August 23, 2024.

MSU-Bozeman groups only: In addition to submitting the pre-proposal on the MT NASA EPSCoR website, you must also submit the pre-proposal in the Office of Sponsored Programs electronic Proposal Clearance Form (ePCF) available at Prepare a “Pre-Proposal” and select the sponsor, “National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) [F].” Type in the Program ID, “Montana NASA EPSCoR 2024 Research Group.”

  • Submit the full pre-proposal as an attachment to the form. The attachment must be in Microsoft Word (.doc or .docx) format.
  • Pre-proposal submission closed August 23, 2024.


Contact:  Dr. Meredith Hecker, Interim-Director, Montana NASA EPSCoR,