Frequently Asked Questions

Select a FOA to view questions and answers for the specific funding opportunity. Alternatively select "Non-FOA related items" to view system FAQ items.

Question 1: Can you please tell me whether NOAA is eligible to apply for funding under the solar forecasting FOA announced yesterday? I assume NOAA, a federal agency within the Department of Commerce, is ineligible as a primary applicant. However, may NOAA employees be part of a team that applies for funding?
Answer 1:

NOAA as a federal agency would not be allowed to apply to Department of Energy FOA DE-FOA-0000649 Improving Accuracy of Solar Forecasting.  Letters of Intent and Application would be accepted with either individuals from NOAA or NOAA national laboratories as team members.

Question 2: In the document for the funding opportunity on solar forecasting (DE-FOA-0000649), reference is made on page 6 to responses to a request for information DE-FOA-0000637 and to a Solar Forecasting Workshop on Feb 10, 2012 in Tucson, AZ. Do you have any documents you can send me or post publicly (and please send me the link) summarizing or listing the responses to the request for information or identifying the respondents, and a workshop summary or list of participants?
Answer 2:

For a summary of the  answers and responses to questions from the workshop and RFI DE-FOA-0000637 please see page 7 of the FOA DE-FOA-0000649.  DOE has no intention of identifying specific respondents to DE-FOA-0000637, nor posting a list of participants or summary from the Solar Forecasting Workshop.

Question 3: We have a scientist would like to apply the subject announcement, but when we read through the document, we found that there is a cost sharing requirement. Is this rule apply to all participants include the sub award, or just apply to some group of applicants? Would you please give us a more clear guide before we submit the LOI?
Answer 3: Cost share applies to total allowable costs (total project costs) and must come from non-Federal sources unless otherwise allowed by law.  Please refer to Page 13 of the FOA for specific cost share requirements by Activity.  In addition, please see 10 CFR Part 600 for the applicable cost sharing requirements. 
Question 4: I need to send a document to the contractual point of contact for the FOA. The purpose of the document is to make a disclosure and is not for the purpose of asking any question or submitting a standard document.
Answer 4: All correspondence regarding FOA DE-FOA-0000649 must be submitted to:  GO SolarForecasting, regardless of the purpose of the submission.
Question 5: Does the letter need to be submitted by our OSP or do we send it directly to you. This appears to be geared toward the DOE labs, can you give me some indication of who is really being targeted with this solicitation?
Answer 5:

As specified in Section IV.B of the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), letters of intent must be submitted no later than 5:00pm EST on 05/16/2012.  Further, applicants must submit a Letter of Intent by the due date to be eligible to submit a full application.

In addition, per Section III.A of the FOA the following domestic entities are eligible to apply for this announcement:  (1) institutions of higher education; (2) nonprofit and for-profit entities; (3) State and local governments; and   (4) consortia of entities (1) through (3).  All types of domestic entities, including DOE/NNSA National Laboratory Contractors and non-DOE Federally Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC) Contractors, are eligible to apply, except other Federal agencies,  and nonprofit organizations described in section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 that engaged in lobbying activities after December 31, 1995.

Question 6: I will be applying with a FFRDC and need to submit the letter of authorization, will it be submitted to this email address?
Answer 6: Any letters of authorization should be submitted as a part of the application package via EERE eXchange as noted in Section IV C. Content of Application of the FOA.  For an example of the authorization letter Section III C. Other Eligibility .
Question 7: In the FOA, there is an example calculation of cost share for blended cost share percentages. That example has four tasks with the first three tasks seeming to match the required activities. The fourth task in the example is "Outreach" and does not require cost share. Is such an activity allowed? There is not currently any way to enter the budget for such a task/activity on the website when submitting the LOI.
Answer 7: Please refer to Section III.C. with regard to cost sharing.  The FOA does not contain any activities that are considered outreach.  Activities 1 and 2 have been deemed research and development, which has a mandatory cost share of 20%, while activity 3 is considered demonstration, which requires a mandatory 50% costs share (10 CFR 600.30).
Question 8: 1- do we have to list all members of the team for the letter of intent? In the document for the FOA, it did not specify that, yet on the website, it did specify that we need to list the names of the organizations and contact information, can you please respond to this ASAP, as this will affect how we will submit our letter of intent. 2- Can a company be present at two separate proposals. i.e. a company could be secondary applicant and participate with another PI, and at the same time submit its own proposal where it will be the PI? ( for more clarifications, the company name will present in two different proposals one as a primary and one as a secondary)
Answer 8:

1-       Please see section IV B 1. for requirements regarding content for Letters of Intent.

2-      An entity may participate as a team member on multiple applications as long as the entity’s scope of work is different on each application. 


Example:  Company XYZ applies as the prime on application 1 and is performing Activity A.  If Company XYZ would like to participate as a sub-recipient on Application 2 they must undertake either Activities B or C.

Question 9: I noticed that the amended FOA reserves $1M for “anticipated technical assistance to be provided by NOAA to awardees.” Is this allocation available to cover any contractors who are supporting a NOAA team member on a proposal, or is it intended to cover some portion of the NOAA team member’s base salary? If it is the former (i.e., the funds are for supporting contractors and/or materials), and our proposal includes such eligible contractors as part of our team, then how do we include their time on the proposal while not including them in the budget? Should we assume an upper limit of $500K (given $1M for 2 proposals)?
Answer 9:

NOAA as a U.S. federal government agency, cannot apply to this FOA as either a prime recipient or sub-recipient. For purposes of this FOA, NOAA includes all federal employees at NOAA, and all staff affiliated with NOAA from Cooperative Institutes. In their proposals, FOA respondents should present the scope of technical assistance desired from NOAA as part of their overall detailed approach to improve accuracy of solar forecasting. However, FOA respondents should not include within their project budget, funding for the technical assistance that may be provided by NOAA. Further, note that the exact scope of technical assistance that may be available from NOAA for successful applicants will depend on the details of the approach in the applications selected by DOE for negotiation of award, and will be finalized through negotiations among DOE, NOAA, and the selected applicant(s). 

Question 10: Is there a technical contact to whom we can reach out at NOAA for questions? We would be keen to confirm some NOAA capabilities in order to finalize our technical approach within the bid.
Answer 10:

Applicants should not contact NOAA. Appendix D of the FOA, together with the webinar slides and the information presented in the webinar are meant to provide information about NOAA's capabilities that may be available to successful applicants. 

All questions regarding this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), including questions regarding NOAA, must be sent to Questions and responses will be posted on the EERE eXCHANGE website, which is available at:, after selecting the applicable FOA from the drop down menu.  The DOE will attempt to respond to questions within three business days unless a similar question and answer have already been posted on the website.

Question 11: Can a company participate in two different proposals working under the same activity? To clarify it more, can a company participate in multiple proposals doing portions of the same activity?
Answer 11:

A company may participate in multiple applications doing portions of the same activity, but if more than one proposal is selected then DOE would need to verify that the scope of work being performed under each project was distinct and there was no overlap. 

Question 12: We are collaborating with another institution who serves as the prime. As a DOE FFRDC, we understand that our FWP is included as an attachment to the larger proposal. Are we required at the application stage to also file the FWP through DOE’s internal proposal submission system?
Answer 12:

If a DOE FFRDC contractor is to perform a portion of the work, you must provide a DOE Field Work Proposal (FWP) in accordance with the requirements in DOE Order 412.1 Work Authorization System.  The DOE Order 412.1, Work Authorization System and the DOE O 412.1, Field Work Proposal form are available at the following link, under “DOE Budget Forms”: .  Save the Field Work Proposal in a single file titled “ControlNumber_LeadOrganization_FFRDC_FWP.”


Question 13: Can we get a list of the participants in the RFI (1/6/12) and Solar Forecasting workshop in Tucson (2/10/12) and results/notes from the RFI and the meeting?
Answer 13:

Please see Page 13 and 14 of the FOA for the results of the Solar Forecasting Workshop held in Tucson, AZ.  Note, a list of participants will not be provided by DOE. 

Question 14: The DOE FFRDC will be a sub-recipient (team member) for proposal submission. Is the DOE FFRDC waived from the cost share requirement?
Answer 14:

Cost share must be calculated on total allowable costs for activities A and B (i.e., the sum o the Government share, including FFRDC contractor costs if applicable, and the recipient share of allowable costs equals the total allowable cost of the project) and must come from non-Federal sources unless otherwise allowed by law.  (See 10 CFR Part 600 for the applicable cost sharing requirements.)

Please see Section III.B of the FOA for the cost share requirements. 

Question 15: We understand that FFRDC budget is included in calculation of the cost share 20%. Our understanding is that FFRDC’s are waived from cost sharing. Is this correct?
Answer 15:

Cost share must be calculated on total allowable costs for activities A and B (i.e., the sum o the Government share, including FFRDC contractor costs if applicable, and the recipient share of allowable costs equals the total allowable cost of the project) and must come from non-Federal sources unless otherwise allowed by law.  (See 10 CFR Part 600 for the applicable cost sharing requirements.)

Please see Section III.B of the FOA for the cost share requirements.  

Question 16: The FOA states: “Each FOA applicant team will be required to include at least one continental U.S. power system operator in whose region, the impact of improved accuracy of the forecasts will be assessed.” Does the ISO or utility need to be part of the team? Do we need to have an agreement in place with the ISO or utility prior to submission of the proposal?
Answer 16:

Yes, each FOA applicant team will be required to include at least one continental U.S. power system operator in whose region, the impact of improved accuracy of the forecasts will be assessed. The continental U.S. power system operator is required to be an integral part of the team that is submitting the application. The application should clearly define the involvement of the power system operator in the proposed activities. 

Question 17: I would like to request an extension for the application due to the complexity of the scope and the level of detail that is requires. Please let me know if this would be possible.
Answer 17:

The application due date will not be extended.  Applications must be received by 06/28/2012, not later than 5:00 PM Eastern Time.  You are encouraged to transmit your application well before the deadline.  Applications received after the deadline will not be reviewed or considered for award.


Question 18: We will be a subcontract on a proposal submitted to "Improving the Accuracy of Solar Forecasting Funding Opportunity Announcement Number: DE-FOA-0000649 ". One of the requirements is a copy of our F&A rate agreement. As time would have it, just last week we received approval of our F&A proposal and our rate increased by x.x%. We do not have the official agreement. Our contracts and grants office was notified via telephone. How should we proceed? Would you accept a letter from the Director of our Contracts and Grants office?
Answer 18:

Please submit budgets with the most up-to-date information currently at hand.  Any additional supporting documentation regarding budgets may also be submitted with the application package.  Budgets will be addressed once selections are made and negotiations for awards begin.

Question 19: When do we expect to hear back regarding this funding opportunity (DE-FOA-0000649).
Answer 19:

Selections are expected to be made by mid-September.  Applicants will be notified of their selection status once the process is finalized and approved. 


Question 20: I am writing on behalf of [Information Removed] and our assembled team to inquire on any current status related to the DOE applicant selection for DE-FOA-0000649. The announcement refers to an “end of August” selection. We recognize that there may also be a period of pre-selection clarification. Any guidance or insight that DOE/EERE may supply at this time would be greatly appreciated.
Answer 20:

Announcements for selected applicants , as well as non-successful applicants are anticipated to be made before the end of the FY2012.


Question 21: Regarding FOA 0649, we wanted to follow up to determine how many applicants were in consideration during the Full Review before the two selections were made. If you could please let us know per your convenience, we would greatly appreciate it.
Answer 21:

The requested information is only releasable under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).  Please submit a FOIA request and the information will be provided  as soon as possible.  FOIA requests for documents held at the Golden Service Center can be made on-line at: