Management and Operation of the National Geophysical Observatory for Geoscience (NGEO)

Funding Agency:
National Science Foundation

NSF hereby solicits proposals to manage and operate one or more components of the National Geophysical Observatory for Geoscience (NGEO). NGEO would comprise a distributed, multi-user, national facility for the development, deployment, management, and operational support of modern geodetic, seismic, and related geophysical instrumentation and services to serve national goals in basic research and education in the Earth sciences. In addition, NGEO would support mission goals of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) for global real-time earthquake, volcano, and tsunami observations, early warning and hazard mitigation efforts, nuclear test ban verification, precise positioning and timing, and other Earth observation needs. NGEO would also support commercial and international groups that depend on NGEO capabilities for an increasingly wide range of applications.

Awardee(s) would work closely with NSF and the scientific community to ensure that NGEO facility capabilities support, sustain, and advance frontier science. In cooperation with NSF and within available resources, the Awardee(s) would plan and execute a viable, coherent, and inclusive program to support multi-user research and education, consistent with guidance and oversight by the scientific community.

Proposals should describe how the proposing institution(s) would: (1) provide observing capabilities and scientific data; (2) support the needs of NSF-funded, peer-reviewed research and education projects; (3) foster an integrated program of education, workforce development, and outreach; (4) develop, manage, and maintain facility capabilities; (5) manage and develop a skilled and diverse workforce; and (6) establish appropriate partnerships with universities, industry, private organizations, other Federal agencies, and the international community to support the NGEO mission.

NSF anticipates that successful proposal(s) for NGEO management and operations would be awarded as cooperative agreement(s), or a master cooperative agreement with cooperative support agreements. Any such award(s) would commence 1 October 2018 and would have a duration of ten years contingent on the availability of funds and the successful outcome of comprehensive external reviews of Awardee(s) performance and facility success.  As necessary, the Awardee(s) will define and execute a budgeted, scheduled, and tracked project plan to manage any transition from the current to the proposed model of NGEO management and operations. Any such transition period would commence with a transition award, under this cooperative agreement, on or after 1 April 2018 and conclude no later than 12 months thereafter.


  • Letter of Intent Due Date(s) (required) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time):  August 01, 2016

  • Full Proposal Deadline(s) (due by 5 p.m. proposer's local time): December 30, 2016

Agency Website

Amount Description

Estimated Number of Awards: 1 to 5

Anticipated Funding Amount:$387,000,000

This is the projected total amount of NSF funding for the 10-year duration of any NGEO award(s), starting 1 October 2018, subject to the availability of funding. NSF anticipates any award(s) would be for an initial duration of five years, with the possibility of renewal for a further five years contingent on the availability of funds and the successful outcome of comprehensive external reviews of Awardee(s) performance and facility success during the third or fourth year of the period of initial support.

Funding Type





Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences

External Deadline

August 1, 2016