The National Institute of Standards and Technology is requesting comments on its proposed revisions to the regulations governing the agency's Advanced Technology Program. The proposed rule changes, published in the Aug. 2 Federal Register, are intended to streamline the handling of research proposals under the ATP and bring the ATP regulations into accord with changes required under the American Technology Preeminence Act of 1992.
Several of the proposed changes are intended to make the process of reviewing proposed and active ATP projects less burdensome. The new regulations, for example:
NIST also proposes changes to the "weight" assigned to selection criteria. ATP projects are evaluated on scientific and technical merit, potential broad-based economic benefits, adequacy of plans for commercialization, experience and qualifications of the applicant(s), and the applicant's level of commitment and organizational structure. Previously, all five criteria were given equal weight. Under the new rule "scientific and technical merit" will receive greater stress; experience and "level of commitment" will receive less.
Several of the proposed changes are required under the American Technology Preeminence Act of 1992. These include:
Comments on the proposed changes must be received by Sept. 1, 1993. Comments must be in writing and should be addressed to Advanced Technology Program Rule Comments, Technology Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, A402 Administration Building, Gaithersburg, Md. 20899-0001.
The full text of the Federal Register notice is available electronically by anonymous ftp to enh.nist.gov. The file "atprfc.93" is in the techserv subdirectory.
NIST is the only federal technology agency with the primary mission of helping U.S. industry to strengthen its competitiveness. Through research, services, grants and outreach programs, NIST assists industry in developing, adapting and commercializing technologies that lead to greater productivity, higher quality, and new and improved products and services. NIST is an agency of the Commerce Department's Technology Administration.