We accept Project Pitches at any time (24/7) and 365 days a year. Typically, it takes about one month to get an official response from NSF staff.
The required Project Pitch allows startups to learn if their proposed project is a good fit for funding from America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF. See four key questions you'll be asked to answer.
1. The Technology Innovation. (Up to 500 words)
Describe the technical innovation that would be the focus of a Phase I project, including a brief discussion of the origins of the innovation as well as explanation as to why it meets the program’s mandate to focus on supporting research and development (R&D) of unproven, high-impact innovations.
2. The Technical Objectives and Challenges. (Up to 500 words)
Describe the R&D or technical work to be done in a Phase I project, including a discussion of how and why the proposed work will help prove that the product or service is technically feasible and/or will significantly reduce technical risk. Discuss how, ultimately, this work could contribute to making the new product, service, or process commercially viable and impactful. This section should also convey that the proposed work meets the definition of R&D, rather than straightforward engineering or incremental product development tasks.
3. The Market Opportunity. (Up to 250 words)
Describe the customer profile and pain point(s) that will be the near-term commercial focus related to this technical project.
4. The Company and Team. (Up to 250 words)
Describe the background and current status of the applicant small business, including key team members who will lead the technical and/or commercial efforts discussed in this Project Pitch.
Submit your pitch
When you're ready, you'll need to create an account to submit your Project Pitch.*Submit your Project Pitch
*Each startup or entrepreneur can only submit one Project Pitch at a time and must wait for a response before submitting another. You can only submit one Project Pitch per quarterly submission window (which occur roughly every three months - see the submission windows on the next page.) Any small business that has received an invitation to submit a full proposal must wait for a resolution of the full proposal before submitting a new or revised Project Pitch. An invitation to submit a full proposal is valid for one year.