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Please Note that a Letter of Intent is due Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Program Area Overview

Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research

 The primary mission of the Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) program is to discover, develop, and deploy computational and networking capabilities to analyze, model, simulate, and predict complex phenomena important to the Department of Energy. A particular challenge of this program is fulfilling the science potential of emerging computing systems and other novel computing architectures, which will require numerous significant modifications to today's tools and techniques to deliver on the promise of exascale science. To accomplish this mission, ASCR funds research at public and private institutions and at DOE laboratories to foster and support fundamental research in applied mathematics, computer science, and high-performance networks. In addition, ASCR supports multidisciplinary science activities under a computational science partnership program involving technical programs within the Office of Science and throughout the Department of Energy.

 ASCR also operates high-performance computing (HPC) centers and related facilities, and maintains a high-speed network infrastructure (ESnet) at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) to support computational science research activities. The HPC facilities include the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF) at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), and the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL).

 ASCR supports research on applied computational sciences in the following areas:

- Applied and Computational Mathematics - to develop the mathematical algorithms, tools, and libraries to model complex physical and biological systems.

- High-performance Computing Science - to develop scalable systems software and programming models, and to enable computational scientists to effectively utilize petascale computers to advance science in areas important to the DOE mission.

- Distributed Network Environment - to develop integrated software tools and advanced network services to enable large-scale scientific collaboration and make effective use of distributed computing and science facilities in support of the DOE science mission.

- Applied Computational Sciences Partnership - to achieve breakthroughs in scientific advances via computer simulation technologies that are impossible without interdisciplinary effort.

For additional information regarding the Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research priorities, click here.



 Maximum Phase I Award Amount: $225,000

Maximum Phase II Award Amount: $1,500,000

Accepting SBIR Applications: YES

Accepting STTR Applications: YES


Over the past 30 years, The Department of Energy’s (DOE) supercomputing program has played an increasingly important role in the scientific discovery process by allowing scientists to create more accurate models of complex systems, simulate problems once thought to be impossible, and analyze the increasing amount of data generated by experiments. Computational Science has become the third pillar of science, along with theory and experimentation. Despite the great potential of modeling and simulation to increase understanding of a variety of important engineering and manufacturing challenges, High Performance Computing (HPC) has been underutilized.

Application complexity, in both the development and execution phase requires a substantial in-house expertise to fully realize the benefits of the software tool or service. High capital equipment and labor costs can severely limit a company’s ability to incorporate HPC into their development process. It should also be recognized that changes in HPC hardware including many-core, multi-core processors, GPU based accerators, and multi-level memory subsystems have made a significant impact on the HPC systems performance and usability. Programming tools and services are required that can hide this hardware complexity without impacting performance.

This topic is specifically focused on bringing HPC solutions and capabilities to the advanced manufacturing and engineering market sectors.

Grant applications are sought in the following subtopics:

a. Turnkey HPC Solutions for Manufacturing and Engineering

HPC modeling and simulation applications are utilized by many industries in their product development cycle, but hurdles remain for wider adoption especially for small and medium sized manufacturing and engineering firms. Some of the hurdles are: overly complex applications, lack of hardware resources, inability to run proof of concept simulations on desktop workstations, solutions that have well developed user interfaces, but are difficult to scale to higher end systems, solutions that are scalable but have poorly developed user interfaces, etc. While many advances have been made in making HPC applications easier to use they are still mostly written with an expert level user in mind.

Grant applications that focus on HPC applications that could be utilized in the advanced manufacturing supply chain, additive manufacturing (3D Printing) processes and Smart Manufacturing are strongly encouraged as well as applications that address the need to have solutions that are easier to learn, test and integrate into the product development cycle by a more general user (one with computational experience, but not necessarily an expert). Issues to be addressed include, but are not limited to: Developing turn-key HPC application solutions, porting HPC software to platforms that have a more reasonable cost vs. current high end systems (this could also include porting to high performance workstations (CPU/GPU) which would provide justification for the procurement of HPC assets or small scale clusters, or to a “cloud” type environment or service), HPC software or hardware as a service (hosted locally or in the “cloud”), near real time modeling and simulation tools, etc.  

Questions – contact: Ceren Susut,

 b. Hardening of R&D Code or Software Tools for Industry Use

The Office of Science (SC) Office of Advanced Scientific Computing (ASCR) has invested millions of dollars in the development of HPC software in the areas of modeling and simulation, solvers, and tools. Many of these tools are open source, but are complex “expert” level tools. The expertise required to install, utilize and run these assets poses a significant barrier to many organizations due to the levels of complexity built into them to facilitate scientific discovery and research, but such complexity may not necessarily be required for industrial applications. Grant applications are specifically sought that will take a component or components of codes developed via the Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC) program, or other ASCR programs, and “shrink wrap” them into tools that require a lower level of expertise to utilize. This may include Graphical User Interface Designs (GUIs), simplification of user input, decreasing complexity of a code by stripping out components, user support tools/services, or other ways that make the code more widely useable. Applicants may also choose to harden the codes developed by other projects provided that the potential industrial uses support the DOE mission. In addition applicants may choose to strip out code components, harden them and join them with already mature code tools and/or suites of tools to increase the overall toolset and scalability of commercial software.

Questions – contact: Randall Laviolette,

 c. Other

In addition to the specific subtopics listed above, the Department invites grant applications in other areas that fall within the scope of the topic description above.

Questions – contact: Ceren Susut,

Note: In addition to local, cluster, or cloud computing resources, applicants may consider using DOE’s Open Science (DOE-SC) Computing facilities, the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF), or the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF). Applicants wishing to run at the NERSC ( facility should send email to “” and inquire about the Education/Startup allocation program. Descriptions of the allocation programs available at the ALCF can be found at . Questions concerning allocations on the ALCF can be sent to David Martin“”. Descriptions of the allocation programs available at the OLCF are available at Questions concerning allocations on the OLCF can be sent to Jack Wells “”. Proprietary work may be done at the ALCF and OLCF facilities using a cost recovery model.

References Subtopic a:

  1.  Michael, F., 2011, Minding the Missing Middle, HPCC Conference Summary, Newport, RI., HPCWire.(  
  2.  Kirkley, J., 2011, Making Digital Manufacturing Affordable: A Vendor Perspective, EnterpriseTech.  (
  3.  Trader, T., 2011, Digital Manufacturing, Why There’s Never Been a Better Time, EnterpriseTech. (
  4.  Executive Office of the President National Science and Technology Council, 2012, A National Strategic Plan for Advanced Manufacturing, p.51. (
  5. 2012, Solid Print – Making Things with a 3D Printer Changes the Rules of Manufacturing, The Economist, Manufacturing and Innovation: A Third Industrial Revolution. (
  6.  “Journal Report: Unleashing Innovation – Manufacturing”, Wall Street Journal, June 11 2013. (

References Subtopic b:

  1. “Workshop for Independent Software Developers and Industry Partners” Workshop Summary, Chicago IL, March 31, 2011. (
  2. McIntyre, C., 2009, US Manufacturing-Global Leadership Through Modeling and Simulation, High Performance Computing Initiative, Compete. Council on Competitiveness, p. 4. (  
  3.  DOE Software Developed or Extended under the Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC) program. (  
  4.  DOE Office of Science, Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC), Project Website. ( 
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