September 2022 NIST Congressional and Legislative Affairs Constituent Newsletter


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NIST Congressional and
Legislative Affairs

Constituent Newsletter  – September 2022

Recent News

CHIPS Strategy Released

The U.S. Department of Commerce released its strategy outlining how the Department will implement the $50 billion from the bipartisan CHIPS Act of 2022, signed by President Biden last month.  The CHIPS for America program, housed within NIST will revitalize the domestic semiconductor industry and spur innovation while creating good-paying jobs in communities across the country.

The strategy outlines the initiatives, strategic goals, and guardrails guiding the CHIPS for America program.

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Recommendations for Supporting a Strong Domestic Semiconductor Industry Report Released

The U.S. Department of Commerce released a summary of responses to a Request for Information (RFI) on incentives, infrastructure, research and development, and workforce needs to support a strong domestic semiconductor industry. The RFI and analysis was developed with support from NIST.

Respondents — from small and large companies, government, non-profit and other sectors — recommended close coordination among programs for maximum impact, adding a private capital multiplier requirement for the financial assistance program to maximize impact, and building a skilled workforce.

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NIST Report Outlines Strategic Opportunities for U.S. Semiconductor Manufacturing

NIST has released a report outlining seven strategic “grand challenges” in measurement, standardization, and modeling and simulation that, if met, will strengthen the U.S. semiconductor industry. 

The report draws on input received through a series of Semiconductor Metrology Workshops convened by NIST that brought together more than 800 participants from industry, academia and government.

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Executive Order on Advancing Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Innovation for a Sustainable, Safe, and Secure American Bioeconomy

On September 12, 2022, President Joseph R. Biden issued the Executive Order on Advancing Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Innovation for a Sustainable, Safe, and Secure American Bioeconomy. This Executive Order (E.O.) launches a National Biotechnology and Biomanufacturing Initiative to focus federal investments that transform biotechnology discoveries into solutions for critical problems.

The E.O. directs NIST, in partnership with federal and other stakeholders, to:

  • Create and make publicly available a lexicon to assist in the development of measurements and measurement methods of the bioeconomy. The lexicon will support important needs in economic measurement, risk assessments, and the application of machine learning and other artificial intelligence tools.
  • Take steps to improve the nation’s cybersecurity for biological data and bio-related software, consistent with President Biden’s Executive Order 14028. NIST will coordinate with relevant interagency partners to identify and recommend relevant cybersecurity best practices for biological data stored on federal government information systems; and consider bio-related software, including software for laboratory equipment, instrumentation, and data management, in establishing baseline security standards for the development of software sold to the government.

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Comments on AI Risk Management Framework

NIST is seeking comments on a second draft of the NIST Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework (AI RMF) The AI RMF is intended for voluntary use in addressing risks in the design, development, use, and evaluation of AI products, services, and systems. 

NIST also seeks comments on the draft NIST AI RMF Playbook, an online resource providing recommended actions Framework users could take to incorporate trustworthiness considerations in the design, development, deployment and use of AI systems. 

Send comments on the draft Framework and initial comments on the draft Playbook  via email to by September 29, 2022. 

Feedback also will be welcomed during discussions at the Building the NIST AI Risk Management Framework: Workshop #3 on October 18-19, 2022.  Registration for the virtual workshop is now open.

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Funding Opportunities

NIST PSCR Awards $92,500 in Phase 1 of the CommanDING Tech Challenge

On August 16, NIST PSCR announced the Phase 1 winners of the CommanDING Tech Challenge and $92,500 in cash awards. Fifteen of the 31 applicants were selected to advance to Phase 2, where they will confirm their public safety partner organization and develop their dashboards for a virtual evaluation and check-in in October 2022. Learn more about the prize challenge.

NIST PSCR Awards $100,000 in Stage 1 of the First Responder UAS Indoor Challenge

On August 18, NIST PSCR announced the Stage 1 winners of the First Responder UAS Indoor Challenge and $100,000 in cash awards. Each of the 20 winning concept papers described an innovative, affordable UAS solution to provide first responders with increased safety and situational awareness when entering compromised indoor structures. Learn more about the prize challenge.

Additional $3M Awarded to Two Winners for Public Safety Communications Research

NIST awarded an additional $3M to Western Fire Chief Association Inc. and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro for the Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR) Public Safety Innovation Accelerator Program 2022 (PSIAP-2022) funding opportunity. A total of $10M was awarded through PSIAP-2022 to accelerate research, development, production, and testing of key public safety capabilities related to mission critical voice, location-based services, and user interface/user experience. For more information about the funding opportunity, please visit the PSIAP-2022 award announcement page.

Professional Research Experience Program (PREP) Notice of Funding Opportunity

A Notice of Funding Opportunity was posted for the NIST Professional Research Experience Program (PREP).  The NIST PREP is seeking applications from eligible institutions of higher education in the U.S. and its territories that offer two- or four- year degrees in academic science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines to establish and manage a program to support collaborative research relationships in the NIST labs. Eligible applicants may apply to establish and manage a program at the relevant NIST campuses in Boulder, Colorado, Gaithersburg, Maryland, and/or Charleston, South Carolina.

PREP is designed to support the agency’s mission in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education and provide valuable laboratory experience and financial assistance to undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, masters and bachelor’s degree holders, and faculty.  Full Applications must be received at no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time, September 30, 2022.