Questions Regarding Funding Opportunity Announcements

Please contact the ARPA-E-CO@hq.doe.gov email address for questions regarding Funding Opportunity Announcements. Upon the issuance of a FOA, only the Contracting Officer may communicate with Applicants. ARPA-E personnel and our support contractors are prohibited from communicating (in writing or otherwise) with Applicants regarding the FOA. This “quiet period” remains in effect until ARPA-E’s public announcement of its project selections.

ARPA-E will not pre-assess an Applicant’s proposal. Prospective Applicants must review the technical requirements of the FOA and independently determine whether their proposed concept warrants a submission.

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ARPA-E Archived Funding Opportunities

DE-FOA-0001798: MODELING-ENHANCED INNOVATIONS TRAILBLAZING NUCLEAR ENERGY REINVIGORATION (MEITNER)

Nuclear reactor plants are complex systems where many types and scales of technologies must work together seamlessly. Design choices at each of those scales and for each of those technologies impact the rest of the system in terms of functionality, cost, and constructability.

For nuclear energy to contribute in the coming decades, the next generation of nuclear reactor plants need to simultaneously achieve “walkaway” safe and secure operation, extremely low construction capital costs, and dramatically shorter construction and commissioning times than currently-available plants. To attain these goals, new, innovative, enabling technologies for existing advanced reactor designs are needed. The development of these enabling technologies requires understanding the inter-relatedness of design choices. Thus, ARPA-E encourages a rethinking of how pieces of the nuclear reactor system fit together when developing these enabling technologies.

Through the MEITNER[1] (Modeling-Enhanced Innovations Trailblazing Nuclear Energy Reinvigoration) program, ARPA-E seeks to identify and develop innovative technologies to enable the advanced nuclear reactor design community to mature their designs for future commercial deployment. These enabling technologies can establish the basis for a modern, domestic supply chain supporting nuclear technology.

As provided in this FOA, ARPA-E will select multiple Awardees (Prime Recipients) to develop innovative technologies using advanced modeling and simulation (M&S) tools and by leveraging expert input to enable advanced reactor systems.[2] The MEITNER Program will establish a set of well-characterized enabling technologies where:

performance and safety have been studied with multi-physics M&S tools;key cost and performance drivers have been identified for critical development and testing;key gaps in models or data have been identified, which can be addressed through targeted experimental work;costs and construction timelines are well projected; androbust techno-economic analysis (TEA) has been performed and a clear technology-to-market (T2M) plan has been created.

MEITNER Awardees will perform key enabling technology development for nuclear reactor systems, components, and structures, moving those technologies toward commercialization. The program will not support development of fundamentally new reactor core concepts nor the design of entire reactor plants. This approach is intended to focus on identifying and developing key enabling technologies for the existing U.S. advanced reactor design community that take advantage of fields adjacent to those that are typically considered nuclear energy research and development (R&D). The MEITNER Program will use modeling and simulation and, optionally, applied science and engineering-based experimental work.

The MEITNER Program will require a system-level approach in describing and quantifying how new and innovative enabling technologies fit into a plant design to make the plant “walkaway” safe, quickly-deployable, safeguardable, cost-competitive, and commercially-viable. To facilitate such a holistic view, ARPA-E will establish a separately-funded Resource Team to work with Awardees, as described in Section 2.3 below. The Resource Team will consist of three coordinated sub-teams: a computational modeling and simulation (M&S) sub-team, a techno-economic analysis (TEA) sub-team, and a subject matter expert (SME) sub-team (see Section I.E of the FOA). Through the Resource Team, Awardees will have access to SMEs from both the nuclear and non-nuclear disciplines. These resources will allow Awardees to more accurately place their enabling technologies into the larger reactor plant context.

Awardees are encouraged to leverage DOE Office of Nuclear Energy (DOE-NE) programs, such as the GAIN (Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear) initiative (https://www.inl.gov/research-program/gain) and the Nuclear Science User Facilities (NSUF) Network (https://nsuf.inl.gov/), to perform strategic experiments–either during or after completion of the Program.


[1] Named in honor of Lise Meitner who, together with Otto Hahn, first discovered nuclear fission of uranium in the 1930s.

[2] Refer to FOA Section I.B.2.3, titled ARPA-E MEITNER Program Resource Team, for additional information.

Webinar: In this webinar, ARPA-E Program Director Rachel Slaybaugh provides an overview of the Modeling-Enhanced Innovations Trailblazing Nuclear Energy Reinvigoration (MEITNER) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). https://arpa-e.energy.gov/?q=video-other/arpa-e-meitner-foa-overview-webinar 

Documents

  • MEITNER Full Application FOA (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:18 PM ET)

Previous Versions

  • MEITNER CP FOA (Last Updated: 10/20/2017 09:19 AM ET)
  • MEITNER CP FOA Mod 01 (Last Updated: 11/1/2017 01:19 PM ET)

Required Application Documents

Pursuant to the FOA, Applicants are required to submit the "Required Application Documents" with their Application. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed or considered.

View Template Application Documents

Concept Paper

  • MEITNER FOA - Concept Paper Template (Last Updated: 10/19/2017 10:32 AM ET)

Full Application

  • MEITNER - Technical Volume Template (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:24 PM ET)
  • SF-424 (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:26 PM ET)
  • Budget Justification/ SF-424A Workbook (Last Updated: 2/1/2018 02:48 PM ET)
  • Budget Justification/ SF-424A Workbook Guidance (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:27 PM ET)
  • Business Assurances & Disclosures Form - Sample (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:26 PM ET)
  • Business Assurances & Disclosures Form - Template (Last Updated: 2/1/2018 02:50 PM ET)
  • Summary Slide Template (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:29 PM ET)
  • Summary For Public Release Template (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:30 PM ET)
  • Replies to Reviewer Comments Template (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:32 PM ET)
  • TEA Workbook (Last Updated: 1/31/2018 01:25 PM ET)
  • TEA Workbook Webinar Link and Slides (Last Updated: 2/5/2018 11:42 AM ET)

Contact Information

  • ExchangeHelp@hq.doe.gov 
    Please contact the email address above for questions regarding ARPA-E’s online application portal, ARPA-E eXCHANGE.
  • ARPA-E-CO@hq.doe.gov 
    Please contact the email address above for questions regarding Funding Opportunity Announcements. ARPA-E will post responses on a weekly basis to any questions that are received. ARPA-E may re-phrase questions or consolidate similar questions for administrative purposes.

Submission Deadlines

  • Concept Paper Submission Deadline: 12/4/2017 5:00 PM ET
  • Full Application Submission Deadline: 3/15/2018 5:00 PM ET
  • View Full Application Reviewer Comments Period: 4/20/2018 5:00 PM ET – 4/26/2018 5:00 PM ET