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All NIAC solicitations can be found at http://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations

NRA Overview

The NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I studies are focused on early studies of visionary concepts. NASA will seek proposals that align with the agency's Space Technology Roadmaps and NASA's Space Technology Grand Challenges. These must be:
  • Aerospace architecture, mission, or system concepts
  • Revolutionary, yet technically substantiated
  • Very early development (TRL 1-2 or early 3; aiming 10 or more years out)
To further clarify, NASA is explicitly not soliciting NIAC proposals that
  • Are incremental in nature. There are other programs for continuing research or evolutionary technology development. NIAC seeks breakthrough concepts that could redefine the future possibilities for NASA.
  • Are narrowly focused. NIAC develops aerospace architecture, mission, or system concepts. The improvement of smaller constituents (e.g., subsystems, components, instruments, materials) alone is not the intent of this program.
  • Fail to identify a concept or stop short of developing it. The proposal must begin with a clear concept. A literature search, workshop, or research plan may be an interim step, but not an end in itself. The results must then be applied to assess and mature the concept.
  • Lack an architecture or mission context. Solely performing experiments on fundamental processes, analysis, or theoretical derivations is not sufficient. They must be clearly connected to a concept as described above.


This is an open announcement. NIAC proposals will be welcome from unaffiliated individuals, or those affiliated with any educational institution, commercial or not-for-profit organization, research laboratory, agency, or NASA Center (including JPL). The lead proposer must be a U.S. citizen or working in the U.S., but teaming by non-US organizations will be permitted, subject to NASA’s policy on foreign participation.

FY 2012 Phase I NRA

The 2012 NIAC Phase I NASA Research Announcement (NRA) was due on February 9, 2012. This year we offered a two-step proposal process: Step A will request only a short initial description of your concept (due on February 9, 2012). Eligible and competitive Step A proposers will be invited to submit a full proposal in Step B. Details of scope and selection criteria for both Step A and Step B will be published in the NIAC NRA.

FY 2012 Phase II NRA

The first NIAC Phase II NASA Research Announcement was released on April 25, 2012. NIAC is seeking proposals to continue promising Phase I studies. These cutting-edge concepts have the potential to transform future exploration missions, enable new capabilities, or significantly alter current approaches to launching, building, and operating aerospace systems.

This limited solicitation is due on June 6, 2012 and only for current NIAC Phase I concepts or prior NIAC studies that have not already completed Phase II.

Press Release: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2012/apr/12-137_NIAC_PhaseII.html

Announcement: http://nspires.nasaprs.com/external/solicitations/summary.do?method=init&solId={B3180A7B-F67C-A701-17F8-343FABB54615}&path=open