QSEC Seed Fund 2022 Solicitation

The Quantum Science and Engineering Center (QSEC) of George Mason University (Mason) hereby announces its interest in receiving applications for support of work in order to advance the QSEC’s research and collaboration in the areas of quantum materials, quantum computing, and quantum sensing. Successful applications will outline an innovative approach to a significant scientific or technical challenge in these areas that can be achieved by the combination of multiple disciplines. Preference will be given to projects that align with QSEC’s interest areas, that provide a plan for pursuing external funding, and that drive collaboration between QSEC members.

Estimated Funding

Projects will be funded up to a maximum of $10,000 during the summer semester of AY 2022-2023.

Eligibility Information

The eligibility requirements are in place to ensure that the funds will be used to advance QSEC’s long-term interest in transdisciplinary, collaborative quantum research. To be eligible to submit a funding application, the proposed project must meet the following requirements:

1. The proposed project is a collaboration led by one or more QSEC PIs. External collaborators can serve as co-PIs.

2. Applicants are limited to submitting a total of two (2) different applications under this funding opportunity.

Content and Application Forms

The application must include the following components:

  • Cover page (1 page, sample attached)
    • Title
    • PIs, key personnel, and affiliations
    • Project abstract
  • Project Narrative (up to 3 pages with Times New Roman font size 11, single spacing, 1” margin)
    • Background and motivation
    • Technical Approach
    • Relevance and benefits to the QSEC (research, collaboration, education, external fund, etc.)
  • Bibliography and References
  • Biographical Sketch of each personnel (up to 2 pages each)
  • Work plan, timeline, and budget (up to 1 page)
    • Students: please explain their role
  • Other documents (OPTIONAL – Letters of Support (NSF format), External FOA, etc.)

To be considered for awards during summer 2022, the application package should be submitted by email to qsec@gmu.edu by March 21, 2022, 11:59 PM Eastern Time. Evaluation of other requests for funding after summer 2022 will be conducted on a rolling basis.

You can find the application form at the following link:

Review Process

The evaluation of proposals will be conducted with both external reviewers and QSEC leadership. QSEC plans to make selections from those applications judged to have the highest overall merit, with equal consideration given to each of the following criteria:

Strength of the Scientific/Technical Approach, as evidenced by

(1) the innovativeness of the idea and the approach; and

(2) the significance of the scientific or technical challenge and the thoroughness of the presentation.

Ability to competently carry out the project, as evidenced by

(1) the qualifications of the PI, co-PI, and other key personals, and the level of adequacy of resources; and

(2) the soundness and level of adequacy of the work plan to show progress toward proving the feasibility of the concept.

Impact and benefit to the QSEC, as evidenced by

(1) the significance of the technical and/or collaborative benefits of the proposed work, if successful; and

(2) the likelihood that the project will stimulate external funding applications. List possible future funding opportunities if available.

For any general inquiry of this funding opportunity, please direct your questions to Patrick Vora (pvora@gmu.edu) or Fangyu Cao (fcao4@gmu.edu).