Exploratory Energy Research


The Innovation Fund for Exploratory Energy Research fund exemplifies the University‚Äôs commitment to support innovative curiosity-driven energy research that is critical to securing a sustainable shared future. The fund was established as part of the larger Energy Research Fund. The Office of the Dean for Research oversees funding for fundamental energy research projects, and the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment distributes funding for research projects in collaboration with corporate partners.

The Exploratory Energy Research fund supports the exploration of new ideas and concepts aimed at finding sustainable energy solutions. Expenditures can include graduate student stipend and tuition, post-doctoral salary and benefits, undergraduate student stipend, travel, and equipment and supplies. Faculty summer salary is not allowed.

Brief descriptions of previously funded projects are available below.


Tenured and tenure-track Princeton faculty members in Divisions I (humanities), II (social sciences), III (natural sciences) and IV (engineering) are invited to submit proposals.

Submissions are limited to one proposal per faculty member.


Applicants may request up to $150,000 per year for up to two years. 


After completion of the project, a summary narrative and brief financial statement should be submitted to the Office of the Dean for Research, summarizing the outcomes and documenting expenses.  A copy of the suggested report template is available online


Applications are to be submitted online using the InfoReady Review platform. 

Applicants may use this template to compose a narrative of up to three pages.

Separate from the proposal narrative document, provide the following materials. A one-page budget that specifically describes how the funds will be utilized to accomplish the research objectives. A list of other internal or external funding (applied for or awarded) that explains how they relate to the research described in this particular proposal. A one- to three-page biographical sketch for each principal investigator or senior personnel on the project. When developing these materials, applicants are strongly encouraged to work with their regular grants manager, who will ensure that a prospective budget, other support, and biographical sketch will have all of the information needed for reviewers to assess them as key components of the proposal. If relevant to the proposed project, letters of support from collaborators may be included, but such letters are not required.

Proposals will be evaluated on the quality, originality, and potential impact of the research, as well as the availability of other internal and external resources to support the project.

Other things being equal, preference will be given to faculty members who did not receive funding in previous rounds of this competition.

Due Date

Online application submission is due by Friday, March 1, 2024.

Any questions may be brought to the attention of Karla Ewalt, Senior Associate Dean for Research, at [email protected].

Call for Proposals

  • Dates
    • Proposal submission deadline: Friday, March 1, 2024
    • Funding could start as early as: June 1, 2024
  • Apply
    • Upload your proposal here starting Jan. 8, 2024 (login required)
  • Contact

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