The Department of Navy (DoN) Historically Black Colleges and Universities/Minority Institutions (HBCU/MI) Program aims to increase the quantity and quality of minority professionals in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in the defense community. Research conducted at Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) for the DoN HBCU/MI Program: • Enhances the research and educational capabilities of HBCU/MIs in scientific and engineering disciplines critical to the defense mission of the DoN, • Encourages cross-institutional, collaborative participation of HBCU/MIs in naval-relevant research, development, testing, and evaluation (RDT&E), and • Increases the engagement of students, including underrepresented minorities, in STEM fields important to the defense mission. This FOA is executed under policy and guidance of the DoN HBCU/MI Program and is administered by the Office of Naval Research (ONR). This FOA seeks to support research efforts that will contribute to the science and technology (S&T) mission and vision of the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps while simultaneously expanding the research capacity of participant institutions and engaging students in STEM. In that regard, this FOA is intended for white papers and invited proposals from HBCU/MIs exploring basic, naval-relevant research. The technical content of any idea must align with the following research areas of interest as outlined by the Naval Research Development Framework. Information, Cyber, and Spectrum Superiority An increasingly interconnected force with more rapid and effective decision-making is enabled by persistent sensing, advanced data analytics, digital integration, and assured spectrum access. In that regard, this research area spans three strategic areas: • Assured Command and Control (C2) • Electromagnetic Maneuver Warfare (EMW) • Full Spectrum Cyber technologies Assured Command and Control (C2): Assured C2 is enabled by persistent sensing, timely intelligence, and decision support tools that will accelerate “data to decisions” timelines. Leveraging machine reasoning and data analytics, an end-to-end approach achieves protected data transport, resilient networking, and assured apps and services that result in trusted information and actions. The need for increased spectral efficiency and diversity, coupled with the information domain, is critical to our naval freedom of maneuver on a global scale. Electromagnetic Maneuver Warfare (EMW): EMW efforts include electromagnetic spectrum management technologies and techniques that fluidly combine communications, surveillance electronic warfare (EW), and electronics to understand and shape the battlespace. Ultra-wide bank systems, which continuously monitor the spectrum, are needed to facilitate optimized use. Intrinsically secure and resilient computing systems with robust computational and communications architectures will provide the capability to manipulate and interpret rapidly growing amounts of data support of C2, Combat Systems (CS), and Intelligence Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) effects. Assuring secure access to the full spectrum is essential to operate at will or deny adversary access in more complex and dynamic future EMW environments. Full Spectrum Cyber technologies: Full-spectrum Cyber approaches must be developed to protect our networks, data, information systems, and real-time control systems. Total platform cyber protection is becoming an essential element of Information Warfare. Cyber technologies provide the ability to assess and counter potential threats. Future information systems must provide agile capabilities for achieving and maintaining communications and data integrity in rapidly evolving, dispersed, and disadvantaged environments. Computational architectures need more resilient information infrastructure through assured system design, automated defensive tools for advanced persistent threats, hardening of the hosts, and data assurance. Applicable Research Interests: • Advanced RF electronics and materials • Communications and networking • Computational methods for decision making • Data science and analytics • Electronic warfare • Sensors and sensor processing • Machine learning, reasoning, and intelligence • Resource optimization • Precision navigation and timekeeping Mission Capable, Persistent, and Survivable Sea Platforms Concepts, systems, and component technologies that improve the performance and survivability of naval ships/submarines in an increasingly distributed yet interconnected force are critical. New platforms will need to deliver advanced weapons, as well as increased mobility and survivability. Power and energy for surface ships is a key, enduring investment for the efficiency of legacy platforms, while enabling the power requirements of future electric weapons. High-power electric weapons and sensors have advanced significantly, creating technical requirements for dramatic increases in energy management and pulsed power. Computational tools that model the platform’s interaction with the anticipated operational environment are essential to the development of integrated designs and protections such as stealth, counter-directed energy weapons, tactical decision aids, electronic warfare, and hard-kill systems. Undersea dominance remains a priority as the Navy designs and builds the next generation of strategic and tactical submarines. Resurgence by peer adversaries in ultra-quiet submarine technology is closing the gap in undersea warfare. Platform mobility and survivability is critical to successful operational strategies calling for more distributed forces. Advancements in materials, acoustics, and intelligent control are required in addition to hydro-, electro-, and computational mechanics. Advancements in countermeasures for ships and submarines are also critical. Platforms will become more self-sustaining to extend endurance and forward presence while reducing the logistics tail for fuel. Future platforms must have reduced sustainment requirements and be easier to maintain. Efforts are focused on platform interfaces as well as platform efficiency to reduce sustainment needs. Enhanced interface standards and modularity provide flexibility, ease of maintenance, and upgrades. Finally, affordability permeates all modernization concepts. The development of validated design tools capable of rapidly and accurately analyzing and evaluating novel platforms with advanced system performance characteristics is a high priority. Applicable Research Interests: • Naval engineering • Advanced naval power systems • Advanced survivable sea platforms • Unmanned sea platforms, autonomy, and power • Advanced naval materials • Undersea weapons, counter-weapons, and energetics • Sea platform environmental quality • Corrosion control Aviation, Force Projection, and Integrated Defense Sea-based aviation, including platform and weapons research, is focused on new or enhanced capabilities to defined against, and/or deter, disable, damage, defeat, or destroy adversaries at extended ranges and speeds. Offsetting technologies must continue to provide naval forces with an edge in any future battle. In the future battlespace, electric weapons with deep magazines and low cost-per-kill will be required to engage large numbers of threats simultaneously. Directed-energy systems will be used in layered defense to counter ISR capabilities, defeat or destroy threats, both before and during combat. Networked weapons will improve the probability to kill and reduce the need for multiple weapons targeting the same platform. Advanced warhead materials will decrease the size of rounds. Electromagnetic realigns will allow more, smaller, and longer-range rounds. Future naval fires efforts include targeting, decision support and precision strike by air, surface, undersea, and expeditionary forces. Improved aerodynamic control will allow unprecedented maneuverability for unconventional aircraft designs. Advanced aircraft power and propulsion technologies, such as variable-cycle advanced technology, will provide more efficient operation over a wider range of flight conditions. They will also enable technologies for providing the power and thermal management of electric weapons for next-generation aircraft. Advances in structures and materials will allow for reduced life-cycle costs as well as stronger and lighter airframes. Autonomous systems will reduce operational risk and improve mission performance. For today’s missions, autonomy can improve manning effectiveness and provide options for mission tasks. For future missions, autonomy can provide new persistent, pervasive, and rapid response capabilities to do tasks that would be unaffordable or impractical today.