Collaborative Research: Cyberinfrastructure Development for the Western Consortium of Idaho, Nevada, and New Mexico Grant uri icon



  • EPS-0919123: Nevada System of Higher Education, Gayle L. Dana, Linked to
    EPS-0918635 (University of New Mexico) and EPS-0919514 (University of Idaho)

    Collaborative Research: Cyberinfrastructure Development for the Western Consortium of Idaho, Nevada, and New Mexico

    Idaho, Nevada, and New Mexico have NSF EPSCoR Track-1 Research Infrastructure Improvement (RII) awards that share a common theme of global challenge. Collectively, the project teams are studying climate change and its effects on water resources, ecosystems, and the environment. Subsequently, the three states formed a consortium to pursue cyberinfrastructure (CI) improvements that would leverage their resources so that the cumulative impact of NSF RII investments in the three states could exceed the sum of the parts. The impetus for this Track-2 award was the recognition of the complexity and scale of the scientific challenge and subsequent ramifications for science, education, and economic development.

    The NV-ID-NM consortium proposed three high priority objectives: 1) to increase connectivity and bandwidth; 2) to enhance data and model interoperability; and 3) to utilize CI to integrate research with education.

    Intellectual Merit
    Climate change impacts are especially pronounced in the Western United States due to the tight coupling between climate and regional hydrology, and the associated ramifications for the water supply, disturbance regimes (e.g., fire, drought), regional economy, and the quality of life. The proposed CI developments will enable researchers to more effectively share standardized and interoperable data and models, and to more easily develop regionally coupled atmosphere-land surface-hydrology-socioeconomic models. Consortium institutions and states will be linked to more than 200 other Internet2 universities, government research laboratories, companies, and other research facilities throughout the world to facilitate data-intensive research, collaboration, distributed experiments, grid-based data analysis, experimentation using high performance networking, and social networking. In addition, the proposed investments aim to support effective participation in national and international virtual organizations focused on global climate change, such as the National Ecological Observatory Network, and the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc.

    Broader Impacts
    The proposed CI investments in the consortium seek to achieve broad impact and add value by leveraging existing resources and infrastructure within the institutions, jurisdictions, and regions. The institutions that will benefit from the proposed increased connectivity include rural institutions and those serving Hispanic and Native American students and faculty members. Open access to the data and models developed within the consortium will be made available through the data archive, and the model interoperability framework will ensure that scientific products can be broadly disseminated and readily used by scientists, engineers, and students throughout the world. The project also seeks to make usable high-quality environmental data, information, and models available for STEM education and outreach. The consortium?s education programs are designed to have far-reaching impact by: (1) developing new CI skills and climate modeling expertise for graduate students, postdoctoral associates, and faculty; (2) integrating cyberlearning and climate change science into middle and high school science education, especially targeting rural schools and schools that reach Hispanic and Native American students; and (3) developing an Industry CI Days Program that promotes CI awareness in business and industry.

    The consortium is committed to improving access to cyberinfrastructure for minority populations and geographically disadvantaged populations, and to increasing diversity in the future workforce of the partnering states.

date/time interval

  • September 15, 2009 - August 31, 2013

total award amount

  • 2,000,000