As you may already be aware, the ARPA-E OPEN 2021 Funding Opportunity Announcement was released a couple weeks ago. The objective of this call is to support high-risk R&D leading to the development of potentially disruptive new technologies across the full spectrum of energy applications. The Lab encourages our researchers to team up internally and externally to apply and bring your innovative ideas to fruition. Since preparing a full ARPA-E proposal is complicated and time-intensive, please start early and plan accordingly with your respective proposal development teams.
In the most recent ARPA-E Open call in 2018, nearly 60% of awards were made to industry leads, roughly 30% to university leads, and only 6% to national lab-led projects. There’s a clear bias toward industry leads at ARPA-E and we highly encourage you to partner with companies able to support the Lab’s portion of cost-share obligations rather than request institutional funds. This will both help maximize your chances of success and minimize impact on the Lab’s scarce discretionary funding.
Importantly, since the lead organization for any team is legally and financially responsible in case their sub-awardees fail to meet cost-share obligations, it will be very challenging for LBNL to assume a lead role on multiple proposals. The Lab is unable to provide our partners’ portion of cost-share. As a consequence of DOE requirements and our institutional obligations, the Lab will run an internal review and down-select process prior to the submission of any Lab-led concept papers and full proposals. We will not perform such a review prior to concept paper submission for other, sub-award proposals, but will require formal cost-share requests be filed and institutionally reviewed prior to full sub-award proposal submission. Details are provided below.
Since we anticipate there may be a large number of concept papers (due April 6) and full proposals (due date TBD) submitted with LBNL participation, we have set up an informational website with a registration form link to gather information. We request that all PIs and teams interested in submitting concept papers complete this form so we can forecast and plan full proposal development resources accordingly. This will also help identify any needs for further industry engagement and cost-share management that we can assist you with.
Finally, we’re planning an ARPA-E 2021 Open information session in early March, and will look forward to getting your input and questions there. And, please feel free to reach out via email to email@example.com in case you have any specific concerns, ideas or questions in the meantime.
RELEVANT DATES AND INFORMATION (Subject to change)
March 10: (tentative) ARPA-E 2021 Open information session
March 23: Survey responses and DRAFT concept papers due from all LBNL PIs planning to submit a proposal either as Lead Lab or with a partner(s)
April 1: LBNL-led proposal down-select notifications (if necessary) from Deputy Lab Director for Research due to PI
April 6, 2021, 6:30am PT – Concept papers due to ARPA-E Exchange
TBD: Notice from ARPA-E to PIs on whether encouraged to proceed to full proposal
TBD: Internal review of full proposals with institutional cost-share requests prior to submission
TBD: Full proposal due date
Upon approval, LBNL discretionary funding for cost-share is limited to 5% of the LBNL share of the budget and strictly subject to eligibility requirements. To learn more about Lab policy or to file a request for cost share support, see LBNL Request for Shared Cost. For more information on DOE cost share requirements for this solicitation, please consult pages 17-20 of the DOE funding opportunity announcement (DE-FOA-0002459) on the ARPA-E Funding Opportunity Exchange.
Head of Strategic Development, Lab Directorate
Chief Strategic Partnerships Officer, SPO