Industrial Assessment Center Program - Centers of Excellence
Golden Field Office
The Office of Manufacturing and Energy Supply Chains (MESC) is issuing this restricted eligibility Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to establish up to five regional Centers of Excellence at existing Industrial Assessment Centers (IACs) to coordinate with and advise IACs located in the regions of the Centers of Excellence. DOE expects to make a total of up to $18,750,000 of federal funding available for three to five awards under this FOA, subject to the availability of appropriated funds. However, DOE may issue one, multiple, or no awards. Individual awards are anticipated to be for $2,500,000 to $3,750,000 each over a five-year performance period. Awards made under this FOA will be funded, in whole or in part, with funds appropriated by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL). Awards will support up to five regional Centers of Excellence for activities including: (1) Identifying new technologies, tools, and practices of particular importance to regional IAC clients and supporting development of new or expansion of existing assessment tools to incorporate these new technologies, tools, and practices; (2) Coordinating with national and regional stakeholders, including, for example, DOE Offices; the National Laboratories; the Manufacturing USA Network; NIST MEPs; State, Tribal, regional, and local offices and entities; utilities and energy service providers; education, and economic development, workforce development stakeholders; and private industry; (3) Supporting the development of materials and resources for the National Clearinghouse, with a focus on developing materials and resources of regional importance; (4) Coordinating regional outreach to small- and medium-sized manufacturers, and particularly manufacturers in disadvantaged communities, to share information about IAC Program resources and opportunities; promote regional adoption of priority technologies, practices, and tools; and ensure that the IAC Program remains apprised of regional manufacturers’ changing needs and capabilities; (5) Mentoring IAC directors and staff regionally, including providing training to IAC directors, staff, and students regarding best practices for carrying out assessments and supporting unusually complex or lengthy IAC assessments within the region; (6) Supporting development of and training on new methods of delivering IAC assessments, including both traditional and virtual assessments that expand the reach of the IAC Program by reducing or eliminating the need for IAC staff and students to travel to work on-site with small- or medium-manufacturers; (7) Supporting student-focused activities, including facilitating connections between graduates and private industry, supporting student research competitions, hosting regional events, recognizing student and alumni achievements, supporting interaction among students and alumni; (8) Forging new relationships and articulation agreements with labor unions, registered apprenticeship programs, and other joint labor-management training partnerships; and (9) Supporting regional and national clean-energy workforce development activities, including but not limited to development and implementation of new degree programs, credentials, and certifications. The eXCHANGE system is currently designed to enforce hard deadlines for Concept Paper and Full Application submissions. The APPLY and SUBMIT buttons automatically disable at the defined submission deadlines. The intention of this design is to consistently enforce a standard deadline for all applicants. Applicants that experience issues with submissions PRIOR to the FOA Deadline: In the event that an Applicant experiences technical difficulties with a submission, the Applicant should contact the eXCHANGE helpdesk for assistance (firstname.lastname@example.org). The eXCHANGE helpdesk and/or the EERE eXCHANGE System Administrators (eXCHANGE@ee.doe.gov) will assist the Applicant in resolving all issues. Applicants that experience issues with submissions that result in a late submission: In the event that an Applicant experiences technical difficulties with a submission that results in a late submission, the Applicant should contact the eXCHANGE helpdesk for assistance (email@example.com). The eXCHANGE helpdesk and/or the EERE eXCHANGE System Administrators (eXCHANGE@ee.doe.gov) will assist the Applicant in resolving all issues (including finalizing the submission on behalf of, and with the Applicant's concurrence). DOE will only accept late applications when the Applicant has a) encountered technical difficulties beyond their control; b) has contacted the eXCHANGE helpdesk for assistance; and c) has submitted the application through eXCHANGE within 24 hours of the FOA's posted deadline.