Physics at the Information Frontier (PIF) includes support for data-enabled science, community research networks, and new computational infrastructure, as well as for next-generation computing. It focuses on cyber-infrastructure for the disciplines supported by the Physics Division while encouraging broader impacts on other disciplines. Disciplines within the purview of the Physics Division include: atomic, molecular, optical, plasma, elementary particle, nuclear, particle astrophysics, gravitational and biological physics.
Proposals with intellectual focus in areas supported by other NSF Divisions should be submitted to those divisions directly. Proposals that cross Divisional lines are welcome, but the Physics Division encourages PIs to request a co-review by naming other divisional programs on the cover sheet. This facilitates the co-review and participation of other programs in the review process.
PIF provides support for physics proposals in three subareas: 1) computational physics, 2) data enabled physics, and 3) quantum information science and revolutionary computing.
Computational physics emphasizes methods for high-performance computing that require significant code development, are led by physicists, and may include applied mathematicians and computer scientists. Priority will be given to proposals that, in addition to compelling scientific goals, have a computational advance or new enabling capability. Proposals should include either innovation in computing such as algorithm development and efficient use of novel architectures or provide significant improvement to community codes.
Data enabled physics seeks proposals to develop tools and infrastructure that provide rapid, secure, and efficient access to physics data stores via heterogeneous or distributed computing resources and networks. Examples include development of reliable digital preservation, access, integration, and curation capabilities associated with data from Physics Division experimental facilities and the tools for data handling needed to maximize the scientific payoff. Priority will be given to proposals that serve broad communities or that bring dramatic new capabilities to a specific sub-area of physics.
Quantum information and revolutionary computing supports theoretical and experimental proposals that explore applications of quantum mechanics to new computing paradigms or that foster interactions between physicists, mathematicians, and computer scientists that push the frontiers of quantum-based information, transmission, and manipulation.
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