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The Application Process: Project Application Review

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Review Process

Every NanoFab Project Application is reviewed in two steps.  In the first step, the Policy Compliance and Technical Feasibility Review, the NanoFab Manager determines whether the application provides sufficient information to be evaluated, whether the proposed project is technically feasible and can be performed safely in compliance with NIST and Department of Commerce policies governing user facilities.  Before an application can proceed to the second step, the applicant must also complete, if necessary, any outstanding reporting about prior NanoFab projects.  In the second step, the Technical Merit Evaluation, an Application Review Committee composed of the NanoFab Manager and NIST technical staff evaluates the overall technical merit and scores the application.  The score is used to prioritize access to the NanoFab if/when resources are limited, and by the CNST Director when considering a request for reduced rates.  Therefore, it is very important to follow the instructions and guidance provided in completing the application, and to provide detail proportionate to the scope of the work to be performed (with more detail required for projects requesting reduced rates than for those planning on paying the full rates).  Detailed guidance can be found on this website, including representative completed NanoFab Project Applications and an explanation of the evaluation criteria and scoring process.  

The review process typically takes about two weeks from the time a completed application is submitted to the user office.  At the conclusion of this process, the NanoFab Manager may approve or reject the project.  All proprietary projects and all non-proprietary projects requesting reduced rates must also be approved by the CNST Director.  (Proprietary projects are not eligible for reduced rates.)  If the project is approved, a NanoFab Facility User Coordinator will notify you of the approval, and work with you to complete the necessary steps to establish a payment method, complete a Facility Use Agreement (not required for projects led by NIST employees), and arrange for campus and/or NanoFab access along with your NanoFab orientation and training. 

During the project we request that you promptly report to the NanoFab User Office the full bibliographic reference for all publications, presentations, patents or patent applications, media citations, honors, and awards associated with your current NanoFab project(s) or past NanoFab projects, along with the relevant project number, with a final update at the end of the project year.  Please also promptly report any additions or deletions to your Research Participant list.  (Note that adding a name to this list is a separate process from that required to enable a new collaborator to obtain campus and/or NanoFab access and become an on-site user.)

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