Welcome to Alaska NSF EPSCoR

Alaska NSF EPSCoR improves Alaska's scientific capacity by engaging in research projects supported through National Science Foundation and state funds. EPSCoR recently commenced "Fire and Ice," a five-year project to study climate-driven changes to Alaskan wildfire regimes and coastal ecosystems. For more information check out one-page summaries of each component of the program: Boreal Fires, Coastal Margins, and Diversity, Education and Workforce Development.

Alaska NSF EPSCoR also helps to administer "Teaching Through Technologies," a three-year educational project to excite high school students about science through experiments with unmanned aerial vehicles, 3-D printers and codeable digital devices. EPSCoR also supports Alaska researchers through other funding streams. In addition, the organization just concluded a six-year project entitled "Alaska Adapting to Changing Environments (ACE)," which examined the mechanisms by which communities adapt to environmental and social change. For more information about our history, take a look at this small poster that tracks the timeline and structure of NSF EPSCoR in Alaska.

For information on how to acknowledge EPSCoR support of your work, see the lower right corner of this page.

All Hands Meeting presentations and posters

If you missed the 2019 Alaska NSF EPSCoR All Hands Meeting, or you want to review any material presented there, we've uploaded PDFs of meeting presentations and posters.

Also, if you're looking for Fire and Ice stickers, bookmarks, or posters, swing by 202 WRRB at UAF.

Philippe Amstislavski of Rhizoform

Alaska TREND "Phase 0" winners

The Technology Research and Development Center of Alaska (Alaska TREND) has announced the 5 winners of its 2019 competition for “Phase 0” awards. These awards, which are funded by Alaska NSF EPSCoR, go to promising Alaskan tech start-ups to assist in applying for larger federal grant support. The winners are:

  • First Place: The Launch Company, which is developing technology for space launches including next-generation launch sites and “Quick Disconnect” fittings for launch vehicles.
  • Second Place: Rhizoform, LLC, which is developing a biodegradable foam derived from fungi for use in shipping seafood. (Pictured: Philippe Amstislavski holds a sample of a shipping container insulated with biodegradable mushroom tissue.)
  • Third Place: Aquagga Inc. is developing cost-effective methods of cleaning and desalinating industrial effluents.
  • Fourth PlaceAlon Winston Innovations is developing a new type of machine learning algorithm for use in advanced AI and robotics.
  • Fifth Place: GRAYSTAR Pacific Seafood, Ltd. provides technical services in all aspects of fisheries.

Boreal Fires infographic

If you attended the All Hands Meeting you probably got a look at the great new infographic describing Boreal Fires research, designed by UAF graduate student Megan Perra. The graphic is available here as both a PDF and JPEG, and if you want a hard copy just stop by 202 WRRB on the UAF West Ridge. There are also a few available at UAA from Courtney Breest.

Travel award winners

Congratulations to the recipients of our 2019-20 Alaska NSF EPSCoR travel awards! 23 faculty, students and staff from across the UA system will receive up to $3,500 each to present at a conference or travel to collaborate on their research. Individual winners are listed on our Awards page.

UAF researcher receives EPSCoR "Track-2" award

Hyunju Connor, an Assistant Professor with the UAF College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics and the Geophysical Institute, has received a $1.94 million "Track-2" award from the national NSF EPSCoR program.

The four-year award will fund Connor to collaborate with researchers at the University of New Hampshire to study geomagnetically induced currents, which are caused by geomagnetic disturbances during space weather events and which can produce power outages, train system failures, and pipeline corrosion. The research team will apply machine learning techniques to over two decades of space- and ground-based observations and develop two prediction models for geomagnetic disturbances and risk of geomagnetically induced currents, which will be provided to the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center. The project will also incorporate data from the Space Weather Underground (SWUG) program, in which high school and undergraduate students build and deploy magnetometers, measure geomagnetic disturbances, and analyze the data.

EPSCoR highlights

F&I faculty LeeAnn Munk, Jason Fellman and Eric Klein

We've produced our first PDF highlight from the Fire and ice project, about some first collaborative steps toward stream monitoring. Many thanks to Molly Tankersley of the Alaska Coastal Rainforest Center for the text and photos.

We also have available a number of PDF highlights about research and outreach from the recently concluded Alaska ACE project. Alaska EPSCoR's YouTube site also includes links to multiple recent videos from the ACE project. We also now host sound signatures of planes flying over the North Slope, courtesy of an ACE Northern Test Case research project by UAF MS student Taylor Stinchcomb.

Looking for ACE content?

The Alaska Adapting to Changing Environments project concluded on December 31, 2018. Information about the project has been moved to the EPSCoR archive. At present, the archive contains all pages that were originally hosted here on the main site, as well as a new page containing all information and links from the Southcentral Test Case's Salmon 2050 project and another containing a bathymetry map of the Colville River produced for the Northern Test Case.

Research seed grant deadline extended

The Alaska NSF EPSCoR Fire and Ice project will competitively award a series of seed grants to University of Alaska faculty, staff, and students. More information and application links can be found on our Awards page. Please note that the deadline for Faculty and Student Research Seed Grants has been extended to October 21.

Grants proposals can still be submitted in two categories:

  1. Faculty Research Seed Grants of up to $20,000 each will be awarded to early- and mid-career, full-time faculty members of the University of Alaska to carry out proposals for new and innovative research projects that support the go0als of the Alaska NSF EPSCoR “Fire and Ice” research project. The application deadline is October 21, 2019.
  2. Student Research Seed Grants of up to $4,000 each will be awarded for similar proposals from graduate or undergraduate students at the University of Alaska. The application deadline is October 21, 2019

NSF solicits "Track-2" proposals

The National Science Foundation has released a solicitation for its 2020 “Track-2 Focused EPSCoR Collaborations” awards. Track-2 awards fund large research projects that span more than one of the 28 EPSCoR states and territories. Research proposals this year must address the topic of “Harnessing Big Data to solve problems of national importance.”

Up to $1.5 million a year for up to four years are available to projects that include 3 or more EPSCoR jurisdictions, while up to $1 million a year is available for projects that include two jurisdictions.

Letters of intent are due December 20, and full proposals are due January 24, 2020.

Letter from the Principal Investigator

The latest open letter from Alaska NSF EPSCoR Principal Investigator Pips Veazey is available online.

Prakash, McCabe, Sesko presentations available online


Three recent EPSCoR-sponsored presentations have been posted online. First, the opening presentation from an Oct. 4 Mentoring Workshop conducted by UAF Provost Anupma Prakash is viewable on the EPSCoR YouTube channel.

Second, F&I graduate student Katie McCabe's Oct. 16 talk, "Intertidal community structure and drivers actross a glacial gradient," is viewable on Zoom.

Third, Amanda Sesko's September 10 lecture, "Stereotyping and stereotype threat effects on STEM performance and evaluation," is now available for viewing online. Sesko's talk presents research on the effects of stereotypes in STEM for women and racial minorities in the classroom and the workplace, with a focus on methods for reducing preformance impairments through processes such as self-affirmation.

DEPSCoR seeks proposals

The Department of Defense has relaunched its EPSCoR program (“DEPSCoR”) and announced a total of $3.6 million in funding for projects related to DoD technical research areas. PI and Co-PI teams from EPSCoR states (including Alaska) are invited to register by October 18 and submit white papers by October 25. Individual awards are for up to $200,000 a year for up to three years. See the Funding Opportunity Announcement for more details.

Research posters and presentations

Whenever possible, we will make research posters and presentations by our Fire and Ice researchers available on this site, in addition to lists of publications. Here are our first offerings:

For more information

The Fire and Ice Strategic Plan describes the goals of the project and year-by-year plans to reach them.

For more information on Alaska NSF EPSCoR in general, this poster gives an overview of the history of the organization in Alaska.

The EPSCoR data portal gives access to datasets generated by or related to Alaska NSF EPSCoR research.

The Alaska Science and Technology Plan, which prioritizes the state's S&T activities, was crafted with extensive EPSCoR input. The plan was written by the Alaska State Committee for Research, a panel of academic, political and business leaders charged with overseeing Alaska EPSCoR and advising on the state's research enterprise.


EPSCoR acknowledgment and logos

By our grant terms, any person receiving benefit from Alaska NSF EPSCoR must acknowledge it in any publications, presentations, websites, newsletters, dissertations, theses, etc. that result from Alaska NSF EPSCoR support.

For work supported by the Fire and Ice award (2018-2023), please use the following language: "This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under award #OIA-1753748 and by the State of Alaska."

For work supported by the Alaska Adapting to Changing Environments (ACE) award (2012-2018), please use the following language: "This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under award #OIA-1208927 and by the State of Alaska."

Alaska NSF EPSCoR logos for use in posters and other presentations are available here as EPS, JPEG and TIFF files. We also have a Fire and Ice logo; Please use this in addition to, or as an alternative to, the EPSCoR logo on posters, presentations, etc. The logo is available with border lettering in PNG and TIFF formats, and also without the border lettering as a PNG or TIFF.

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