Call for proposals for PAC Period 2 for non-proprietary research

UPDATE (1/23/23): The submission period for the FRIB PAC2 Call for Proposals is now closed. The scientific and technical review of the proposals is now underway. On 10 March, the list of approved experiments will be posted to the FRIB website and the spokespersons will be notified.

The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility, open to all interested researchers, subject to applicable laws and regulations. Beam time for non-proprietary experiments is granted based on a merit review of proposals. There is no charge for users who are doing non-proprietary work, with the understanding that they are expected to publish their results.

With this call, we invite proposals for beam time to be considered at the second meeting of the FRIB Program Advisory Committee (PAC2) scheduled for March 1-3, 2023. All proposals for review by FRIB PAC2 need to be submitted online by 11 p.m. EST on January 23, 2023, to allow for scientific and technical review of the proposals prior to the PAC2 meeting.

FRIB PAC2 will consider proposals for experiments using fast, stopped and reaccelerated rare-isotope beams. Newly offered for PAC2:

  • Consideration of proposals for experiments that can be run stand-alone in the reaccelerated beam and stopped beam areas where FRIB has a unique capability;
  • Additional primary beams from the FRIB linac (see the FRIB beams page);
  • An additional experimental area, the S1 vault, which is the new, permanent location of the FRIB Decay Station Initiator (FDSi).

Please review the Areas and Instruments in Operation page for a list of experimental areas and instruments that are available at FRIB. In preparation of proposals, all users are expected to follow the FRIB Research Code of Conduct.

Members of the FRIB PAC are listed on the Program Advisory Committee page.

TIMELINE for FRIB PAC2 

  • 2 January 2023 - Last date for rare isotope beam rate requests
  • 23 January 2023 - Proposals submitted online by 11 p.m. EST
  • 1-3 March 2023 - FRIB PAC2 Meeting
  • 10 March 2023 - List of approved experiments posted to the FRIB website and spokespersons notified

The FRIB Scientific Director, Brad Sherrill, is the non-voting PAC convener and the Manager for User Relations, Jill Berryman, is the PAC administrator.

Beam information

The FRIB PAC2 beams page provides:

  • available FRIB primary beams
  • estimates for rare isotope beam rates
  • beam list for stand-alone operation at ReA3, ReA6, or the stopped beam area

FRIB beam physicists will assist in calculation of beam rates and purities, and will need to validate any assumed rare isotope beam rates prior to proposal submission. Once you have decided on an isotope of interest for the proposal, please contact Jill Berryman, Manager for User Relations, to be assigned a beam physicist. The beam physicist will help you with the detailed calculation of the beam(s) you wish to propose for your experiment. The deadline for making your request is January 2, 2023. FRIB beam physicists strive for a two-week response time for requests

Workforce Development/DEI impact

The proposal form includes a new section on Workforce Development/Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Impact. Outcomes from the proposed work to support workforce training and workforce diversity, equity, and development of an inclusive community can be listed.  This section can be left blank if there are no proposed outcomes.

Collaboration organization

New for PAC2 is the requirement of a brief statement on collaboration organization. This section should address the following collaboration plans:

  • Responsibilities of participants,
  • How conflicts will be resolved,
  • How the collaboration will interface with FRIB

PAC will use this information to assess how likely the collaboration will be able to carry out the proposed work. Examples of what could be used for this section are available on the Collaboration Organization Guidelines page.

Submitting Your Proposal

The contact spokesperson of the experiment must register on the FRIB User Portal start his/her proposal. After registering, navigate to the Proposal Application. The Proposal Application will walk the contact spokesperson through all of the necessary information including:

  • co-spokespeople and experiment participants
  • beam type, location/beamline, instruments
  • scheduling information
  • special requests
  • status of previous experiments at FRIB
  • training/DEI Impact (see above)
  • collaboration organization (see above)
  • beam parameters/worksheets
  • instrument worksheets
  • safety information
  • the proposal text

The body of the proposal, or proposal text, can be uploaded directly to the Proposal Application as a pdf. The proposal text should be no more than four 8.5x11 in pages, 10 pt Arial font, 1.5 spaced, with additional pages allowed for references, tables, and figures.  Please include the following in the proposal text:

  1. Scientific motivation
  2. Specific goals of the proposed experiment
  3. Experiment details
    1. what is to be measured;
    2. figure/diagram of experimental instrument;
    3. demonstration of technical feasibility of measurement (by simulation and/or reference to prior work);
    4. justification for time requested
      1. counting rate estimates (including assumptions), expected statistics, and level of uncertainty in the final measurement;
      2. explanation of other time requested (include time for debugging the experimental setup, calibrations, any test runs, and any stable beam runs necessary for reference, etc.);
    5. an indication of present state of readiness of the experiment and an estimated earliest date for the run;
    6. a clear statement of any technical assistance (design, fabrication, installation, etc.) that may be requested from FRIB;
    7. list of items that would be brought to FRIB.

Proposal Evaluation

The PAC evaluation is based on:

  • The full scientific value of the results
  • The technical feasibility of the proposal
  • The ability and past record of the collaboration to successfully conduct the proposed experiment, including the status of previously approved experiments at FRIB
  • The ability and past record of the collaboration to publish the results in a timely manner

A first and second specialist reviewer will be assigned to each proposal. There will be no oral presentations, but at the latest one week prior to the PAC2 meeting, the reviewers will submit questions to the spokesperson. If desired by the participants, a video conference to answer the questions will be arranged prior to the PAC2 meeting.

Based on its evaluation, the PAC will make recommendations for allocation of beam to the FRIB Laboratory Director. The FRIB Laboratory Director will decide what beam time is granted. Approximately 5 percent of beam time will be reserved for discretionary experiments. Approved proposals will be valid for a two-year period.

Technical Review

Prior to the PAC meeting, technical experts (FRIB staff members) will review each proposal to assess its technical feasibility from the point of view of FRIB. Any issues identified in the technical review will be promptly communicated to the spokesperson of the proposal, and the issue(s) along with response(s) from the spokesperson will be distributed to the PAC. FRIB staff having access to pre-decisional proposals attest to disclose all actual, potential, or perceived conflicts of interest during the review.

Safety and Compliance

FRIB users must perform their experiments safely and within the FRIB regulatory framework. To allow us to assess any hazards associated with the specific experimental set-up, the Safety Information Worksheet must be completed as part of the proposal package. FRIB safety experts will review all proposals upon receipt for safety issues. Any findings identified in the safety review will be promptly communicated to the spokesperson of the proposal, and the finding(s) along with response(s) from the spokesperson will be distributed to the PAC. For approved proposals, any specialized or non-commercial equipment brought to FRIB will require an evaluation be prepared with FRIB staff to review potential hazards and planned mitigation strategies. Transportation of all radioactive source materials and activated materials (for example, targets) must comply with the FRIB Laboratory radioactive materials license and must be approved in writing by the FRIB Laboratory Radiation Safety Officer.

Letters of Intent

Letters of Intent will be accepted for the following: Programs that require significant investments in new instruments, requests for new beams, or beam properties. The Letter of Intent may be sent to the Manager for User Relations as a pdf. The sender of the Letter of Intent will receive feedback from the PAC on how a proposal for the science described might be received in the future and may receive guidance on what would be expected in a full proposal.

Privacy

Proposals will be kept confidential as allowed by State of Michigan law, but will be available to PAC members, FRIB operations, and technical staff as needed.

Contact

Please contact the Manager for User Relations Jill Berryman with any questions you may have.

Additional information

An FRIB PAC2 Call for Proposals Webinar was held on 5 December 2022. Presentation slides from FRIB Scientific Director Brad Sherrill can be found here. Presentation slides from the FRIB Theory Alliance Director Daniel Phillips can be found here.