Call for Fundamental Research and Feasibility Studies


Call for short Feasibility Studies from the EPSRC NetworkPlus in Digitalised Surface Manufacturing

Call open: 26 January 2022
Deadline: 28 February 2022, 5 pm


The EPSRC NetworkPlus in Digitalised Surface Manufacturing invites 3rd round of Feasibility Studies Projects. Bids must conform to EPSRC priority areas in manufacturing. DSMN+ particularly welcome bids at the interface between surface engineering and digital manufacturing. Both computational and experimental based proposals are within the scope for this call.

• Please note that all expenses on the project must be incurred by the end of November 2022.
• Projects should not exceed a duration of 6 months with deliverables reported every 2 months.
• Project costings can be upto £35k in total based on a typical IAA cost model (no overheads or estates costs allowed).

Selection criteria will include- Novelty, value for money and ability to deliver on time. Bids which include additional industrial support will be welcome.

This funding cannot be used for the purchase of equipment or to support PhD studentships (top-up) in line with extant EPSRC funding rules.

Proposals are expected to address challenges at low Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs 1-3). Proposals should demonstrate the potential to have significant wider impact in the digital/surface manufacturing sectors.

The Network has a strong commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI). Priority will be given to those bids that leverage additional funds for the benefit of the Network and/or are led by ECRs and/or are led by under-represented groups in engineering.


The following criteria will be used by the review panel when assessing the proposals:

  • Ability to deliver on time. Strict deadline applies. No extension beyond end of November 2022 possible.
  • Proposals driven by novel science
  • Potential for development of future funding applications
  • Strong demonstration of impact
  • Leveraging additional funding
Standard EPSRC rules apply.

Should you be in any doubt regarding your eligibility, please do not hesitate to contact

Eligible organisations include all UK Higher Education Institutions that receive grant funding from one of the UK higher education funding bodies, along with research institutes for which the Research Councils have established a long-term involvement as a major funder. Other independent research organisations (IROs) may also be eligible. Further information on the Eligibility criteria and List of Eligible institutions could be found here.

Each project should be between £20k – £35k in total based on a typical IAA cost model (no overheads or estates costs allowed). This project funding can be used to cover the following.

  • Directly Incurred: PDRA staff costs, Consumables (maximum £10k), Travel and subsistence, PDRA training and development (maximum £2k).
  • Directly Allocated: Investigator time (maximum 20%), Technician time (maximum 30%).
  • All Estates, Infrastructure technician and Indirect costs are ineligible.

    Awards will be made via a short written application.


    We value equality and diversity. In order to reduce potential impact of any form of bias and that the selection of projects are on the basis of merit as per the selection criteria, a two part form will be used. and track record information.

    Part 1 will contain contact details, project team and track record information. Part 2 is where you would be required to outline the Case for Support, which will be considered anonymously by a selection committee or a panel of experts. Please ensure that the form is completed in Century Gothic 10 and that neither of the parts are more than 4 pages each. References can be included as an appendix. A breakdown of the allocation of the funds with a short justification for each category is also required.

    The budget should be submitted via a separate template with the application form.

    Completed forms should be emailed to by 5 pm on 28 February 2022.


    In addition to the specific outputs outlined in your proposal, each feasibility study project team is required to:

  • Present work (in progress or completed) to annual conferences or Network Events.
  • Provide the DSM Network with an information sheet on the project and the impact it has made (e.g. >outreach, further funding awarded, collaborations made, IPs generated, technology developed) for a ResearchFISH submission to EPSRC as DSM Network contribution.
  • Ensure that the work is acknowledged as being supported by EPSRC and DSM Network when promoting projects, either through articles, papers or presentations. Both EPSRC and DSM Network branding should be visibly included on any presentations.


    Call for proposals open: 26 January 2022

    Deadline for submission: 28 February 2022, 5 pm

    Successful proposal announcement: 10 March 2022.

    All feasibility studies should have to complete within the given time-period as per individual project timelines.


    If you encounter any issues while downloading doc (Microsoft Word) version of the application forms, please contact

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