AFOSR Funding Opportunity: International partnership to spark bold new quantum research

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory’s Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFRL/AFOSR), the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF), and the Institute of Information & Communications Technology Planning & Evaluation (IITP) this week announced a joint solicitation for three-year research grants in breakthrough quantum information science and technologies.

This solicitation is part of an ongoing partnership between Korean institutions, NRF and IITP, and the Department of Defense. For the last 11 years the three organizations have worked together supporting basic scientific research efforts in key disciplines.

In order to continue to provide opportunities for scientists and engineers in both countries to collaborate in these emerging technology areas and to leverage their intellectual resources, AFOSR’s Asian Office of Aerospace Research & Development (AOARD), NRF and IITP have teamed to co-fund a program in quantum information science and technologies.

“AFOSR continues to expand and enhance strategic engagement with our international partners through the dedicated efforts of our International Science Division’s global sites,” said AFOSR Director, Dr. Shery Welsh. “Our international program officers create programmatic opportunities to discover bold, high-risk, high-reward research that will modernize our Air and Space Forces.”

Eligibility: This is an open call with open competition, so all applications are welcome. Applications must have a minimum of two co-principal investigators (PI) for each team; one from a U.S. institution and one from a Korean institution. Only one application per team; thus identical proposal narratives should be submitted to both AFOSR and NRF/IITP.

In order to identify the range of potential interest, each team will be asked to submit a white paper with a technical narrative of no more than three pages. White papers should describe the proposed effort to be undertaken. Based on the evaluation of these white papers, the finalist teams will be invited to submit full proposals. The proposals will be reviewed by both NRF/IITP and AFOSR. It is expected that basic-research efforts funded under this program will publish their results in the open literature fostering greater scientific collaboration between the U.S. and Korea.

The NRF and IITP will support projects under this Broad Agency Announcement Amplification, thus the Korean team must choose either the NRF or IITP to submit the proposal. Each are supporting basic research in quantum information science and technologies; however, the NRF is focused in the area of quantum computing, while IITP is focused in the area of quantum sensors and communication.

More information can be found at:


  • 11 January 2021 – Publish call for white papers
  • 10 March 2021 – White papers are due (obligation of 30 days)
  • 14 April 2021 – Down select 10 white papers for full proposal and notify applicants
  • 13 May 2021 – Full proposals are due
  • 18 June 2021 – Publish results of selection