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NSF's Lower Atmospheric Observing Facilities are available on a competitive basis to all qualified scientists from universities, NCAR and other US government agencies requiring these facilities and associated services to carry out their research objectives. The deployment of all facilities is driven by the scientific merit, the capabilities of a specific platform to carry out the proposed observations, and the scheduling of the facility for the requested time.
NSF's Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences (AGS) section budgets annually for deployment costs associated with these multi-user facilities, but with no specified amount assigned to any facility. Semi-annually requests for use of facilities are reviewed during the Observing Facilities Assessment Panel (OFAP) meeting. The feedback and technical evaluations presented by the LAOF Partner Organizations and OFAP members are taken into consideration before a final decision is made by individual NSF Program Officers whether to support or decline funding for a project.
The process for considering requests and setting priorities is determined on the basis of facility deployment costs and/or the complexity of the field component of the research. Requests that seek deployment pool funds on the order of less than $1.25 M are defined as small campaign requests, while those requests in excess of this amount are considered large program requests. Very complex programs e.g., those that involve several facilities, entail difficult deployment logistics or require interagency/international coordination, are also required to follow the review process for large programs.
The NSF-established procedures and priorities for requesting the use of the Lower Atmospheric Observing Facilities are described in more detail on the following pages.
For further information or if you have any questions, please email the LAOF Request Coordinator Brigitte Baeuerle or call her at (303) 497-2061.