Condensed Matter and Materials Theory

National Science Foundation (NSF)

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Deadline: Rolling

Grant amount: Up to US $15,000,000

Fields of work: Materials Science and Engineering Physics

Applicant type: Nonprofit, Faculty, Research Scientist

Funding uses: Research

Location of project: Anywhere in the world

Location of residency: United States


NOTE: Proposals are currently accepted on a rolling basis. Submission of proposals in specific topical areas around target dates is suggested, but are not mandatory.

CMMT supports theoretical and computational materials research in the topical areas represented in DMR's Topical Materials Research Programs (these are also variously known as Individual Investigator Award (IIA) Programs, or Core Programs, or Disciplinary Programs), which include:

  • Condensed Matter Physics (CMP),
  • Biomaterials (BMAT),
  • Ceramics (CER),
  • Electronic and Photonic Materials (EPM),
  • Metals and Metallic Nanostructures (MMN),
  • Polymers (POL), and
  • Solid State and Materials Chemistry (SSMC).

The CMMT program supports fundamental research that advances conceptual understanding of hard and soft materials, and materials-related phenomena; the development of associated analytical, computational, and data-centric techniques; and predictive materials-specific theory, simulation, and modeling for materials research. First-principles electronic structure, quantum many-body and field theories, statistical mechanics, classical and quantum Monte Carlo, and molecular dynamics, are among the methods used in the broad spectrum of research supported in CMMT. Research may encompass the advance of new paradigms in materials research, including emerging data-centric approaches utilizing data-analytics or machine learning. Computational efforts span from the level of workstations to advanced and high-performance scientific computing. Emphasis is on approaches that begin at the smallest appropriate length scale, such as electronic, atomic, molecular, nano-, micro-, and mesoscale, required to yield fundamental insight into material properties, processes, and behavior, to predict new materials and states of matter, and to reveal new materials phenomena. Approaches that span multiple scales of length and time may be required to advance fundamental understanding of materials properties and phenomena, particularly for polymeric materials and soft matter. Areas of recent interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Strongly correlated electron systems;
  • Active matter;
  • Topological phases;
  • Low-dimensional materials and systems;
  • Quantum and classical nonequilibrium phenomena, the latter including pattern formation, materials growth, microstructure evolution, fracture, and the jamming transition;
  • Gels;
  • Glasses; 
  • Disordered materials, hard and soft;
  • Defects;
  • High-temperature superconductivity;
  • Nanostructured materials and mesoscale phenomena;
  • Creation and manipulation of coherent quantum states;
  • Polymeric materials and soft condensed matter, biologically inspired materials, and research at the interface with biology.

CMMT encourages potentially transformative submissions at the frontiers of theoretical and computational materials research, which includes but is not limited to:

  • Advancing the understanding of emergent properties and phenomena of materials and condensed matter systems,
  • Developing materials-specific prediction and advancing understanding of properties, phenomena, and emergent states of matter associated with either hard or soft materials,
  • Developing and exploring new paradigms including computational and data-enabled approaches to advance fundamental understanding of materials and materials related phenomena, or
  • Fostering research at interfaces among subdisciplines represented in the Division of Materials Research.

Research involving significant materials research cyberinfrastructure development, for example, software development with an aim to share software with the broader materials community, should be submitted to CMMT through Computational and Data-Enabled Science and Engineering (CDS&E) within its annual proposal submission window in the fall.

Additional Information Eligibility rules apply for submissions; please see Section II. Program Description, Section IV. Eligibility Information, and Section V.A Proposal Preparation Instructions.

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This page was last reviewed August 19, 2020 and last updated July 19, 2020