UND researchers receive NASA awards

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News Article

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University of North Dakota


Two University of North Dakota scientists are among a select group of researchers nationwide to receive recently announced National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) research grants. Both of the proposals from UND--one including a collaborative project with North Dakota State University--were named among the top seven of the 27 awards announced by NASA and were selected for three year funding.

Xiquan Dong, Atmospheric Sciences, and Forrest Ames, Mechanical Engineering, each received research grants totaling $750,000, the maximum awarded under this program. NASA announced awards totaling $20 million to colleges and universities nationwide to conduct research and technology development in areas important to the agency's mission. These awards also enable faculty development and support to students.

The UND selections are part of NASA's Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, Cooperative Agreement Notice (NASA EPSCoR CAN) program. This NASA grant program helps develop partnerships between NASA research missions and programs, academic institutions, and industry. It also helps states establish long-term academic research enterprises that will be self-sustaining and competitive and will contribute to the states' economic viability and development.

This year’s awards to UND--including a collaborative research project with North Dakota State University--are as follows, listing the researcher, department, project title, and award amount:

*Xiquan Dong, associate professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, UND John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences (UND Aerospace). “Evaluation of NASA GISS ModelE AR5 Simulated Global Cloud Fraction and Radiation Budgets Using the MODIS-CERES Observations and MERRA Reanalysis.” $750,000.

*Forrest Ames, associate dean for academic affairs and professor of mechanical engineering, UND School of Engineering and Mines, and Dr. Yildirim Bora Suzen, assistant professor, Mechanical Engineering Department, North Dakota State University, “Experimental and Computational Investigation of Low Pressure Variable-Speed Turbine Aerodynamics: Benchmark Data Set and Predictive Tool Development.” $749,987.

As per NASA policy, the director of ND NASA EPSCoR, Santhosh Seelan, will serve as administrative principal investigator for both the projects.


The Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, or EPSCoR, establishes partnerships with government, higher education and industry that are designed to effect lasting improvements in a state's or region's research infrastructure, R&D capacity and hence, its national R&D competitiveness.

About North Dakota NASA EPSCoR

The overall goal of North Dakota National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) EPSCoR Program is to increase the competitiveness of North Dakota for merit-based grants and contracts in support of science and technology research from federal funding agencies. The ND NASA EPSCoR Program's federal research partners include the Environmental Protection Agency, NASA, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institutes of Health.