Deadline: January 28, 2022 21:00 PST

11/17/21: It was brought to our attention that the visibility tool -- either within USPOT or as a standalone tool -- is not compatible with the latest format of JPL Horizons ephemeris output. This issue will be fixed in the next release of USPOT on December 9, 2021. Users considering solar system cases are encouraged to use the 'Sun/Moon/Planets' and the "MPES" (for minor bodies) options, or to contact the Help Desk (sofia_help@sofia.usra.edu) for support.

Cycle 10 Calls for Proposals

The Cycle 10 Calls for Proposals is open as of October 29, 2021. The deadline for submitting proposals is January 28, 2022 21:00 PST (January 29, 2022 05:00 UTC).

Cycle 10 features two Calls for Proposals: one Call for regular programs, and a separate Call for the SOFIA Legacy Program (SLP). A formal update to the Calls will be released on December 10, 2021.

Funding is expected to be available for Guest Observers with affiliations in the U.S.; the total available Guest Observer funding available for Cycle 10 is expected to be approximately $5.5M for regular proposals and up to $2M per year for SLP proposals. Thesis enabling proposals intended to enable and support PhD theses based on SOFIA data will be supported, with highly ranked proposals in this category eligible for up to two years of graduate student support.

Cycle 10 is expected to last from October 1, 2022 to September 30, 2023. SOFIA plans to carry out three Southern deployments: a long deployment scheduled approximately June through September 2023, and two short deployments in November 2022 and March 2023. The long deployment will offer GREAT and HAWC+. The fall 2022 deployment will offer FIFI-LS and the spring 2023 deployment will offer EXES.

The Calls are issued on behalf of NASA by the Universities Space Research Association (USRA). Parallel calls for the German community are issued by the German SOFIA Institute (DSI; University of Stuttgart).

New for SOFIA in Cycle 10

  • For Cycle 10, SOFIA is enforcing Dual Anonymous Review (DAR). As in Cycle 9, proposers should upload two distinct pdfs in their proposals, and not identify themselves in the main body pdf file. Clear violations of the anonymization of the proposal will constitute grounds for proposal rejection. More details can be found here.
  • EXES is now offered as a facility science instrument (FSI), and will be for the first time included in a Southern Deployment
  • The funding structure for approved SOFIA programs has been updated to provide a significantly enhanced minimum grant ($75k). The initial grant disbursement of $7k, for Phase II preparations, will now only be executed upon receipt of a justified request.
  • A new sub-category of programs called Multi-Cycle Target Monitoring programs is available for long-term monitoring of time variable targets. For Cycle 10 these programs will extend up to three cycles. This category may be combined with a Target of Opportunity trigger.
  • Regular proposals on GREAT are invited, but any accepted programs will be “Shared Risk” in the sense that even Priority 1 and 2 programs will only be executed to the extent possible in the remaining availability of the instrument (fall of 2023).
  • GREAT is not offered for Cycle 10 Legacy Proposals
  • The 63 microns (Band B) for HAWC is offered as shared risk.
  • The FIFI-LS on-the-fly mapping mode is offered as a new standard mode
  • The capability to tune to the two polarizations of the GREAT LFA to different frequencies for simultaneous observations of different lines is offered.

Regular Proposals (SRP)

Read the Call for proposals (for regular proposals)

Approximately 550 hours of observations will be available with EXES, FIFI-LS, FORCAST, FPI+, GREAT, and HAWC+. Note the following:

  • Regular proposals on GREAT are invited, but any accepted programs will be “Shared Risk” in the sense that even Priority 1 and 2 programs will only be executed to the extent possible in the remaining availability of the instrument (fall of 2023).

  • Up to 20 hours will be reserved for programs supporting JWST observations.

  • As in Cycle 9, joint proposals with the Green Bank Observatory are offered.

  • An opportunity for a joint proposals with IRTF is under discussion and may be introduced in the December 10 Call for Proposals update.

Legacy Proposals (SLP)

Read the Call for Proposals

The SOFIA Legacy Program (SLP) enables programs targeting a rich archival dataset of significant scientific value to the astronomical community for future analysis. These programs span two cycles of observations and data are released immediately to the community, without a proprietary period. During Cycle 10, SOFIA will accept up to three (3) proposals with each allocated up to ~200 hours of observing time (~ 100 hours of observations per cycle). Previously selected SLPs are listed here

Proposals including observations with EXES, FIFI-LS, FORCAST, FPI+ and HAWC+ are accepted. Note the following:

  • GREAT is not offered for Cycle 10 Legacy Proposals
  • Teams are encouraged to build diverse and inclusive legacy teams, and to include a diversity strategy statement in their proposals

Help with Submitting Proposals

Proposals are to be submitted through the USPOT tool. Please always use the latest version - 4.4.1 as of October 29, 2021. Submissions with earlier versions will fail.

SOFIA's HelpDesk is open to answer any question and inquiry from the community: sofia_help@sofia.usra.edu.

A Proposal Tools Webinar will be held in January 2022, and will be announcement through the SOFIA Community e-Newsletter (sign up for the e-Newsletter here). The objective is to help proposers in avoiding the typical pitfalls in observing time estimates and enhancing the Technical Feasibility section of their proposals. Slides from the webinar and associated video tutorials from the 2020 and 2019 webinars are available here

Information about the Dual Anonymous Review (DAR) can be found here. The video link to a webinar held in 2021 on the topic of DAR is available here, with presentations from Lou Strolger (STScI) and B-G Andersson (SOFIA/USRA).

Important Documents

Call for Proposals (for regular proposals)
Call for Proposals for the SOFIA Legacy Program (SLP)
Observer's Handbook for Cycle 10
USPOT Manual
SLP & SARP Budget Template
Grant Funding Distribution Plan
Grant Budget Guidelines 
Grant Progress Report Template
Co-Author Affiliations with the People’s Republic of China

In addition, the Proposal Documents page contains all necessary documentation and useful tools for submitting proposals. Complementary sky positions derived from Cycles 7,8 and 9 proposals are available here (complementary positions were found to be consistent across observing cycles).

Updates for Cycle 10

To keep current with the latest programmatic updates, sign up for the e-Newsletter here.

List of Updates for Cycle 10
Date Update Details
29 October 2021 CfP and SLP CfP released original releases of two calls: one for regular proposals and another for Legacy proposals (SLP)