University of Idaho - I Banner

ORED Funds 12 Equipment and Infrastructure Support Proposals

November 15, 2019

Twelve proposals representing eight colleges and institutes were selected for funding through the fall 2019 Office of Research and Economic Development's (ORED) Research Infrastructure and Scholarly Excellence (RISE) Equipment and Infrastructure Support (EIS) award program. The program supports equipment purchases, upgrades and repairs to enhance research, scholarship and creative activity at the university. In this competition, ORED awarded a total of $133,309 in funding, with total campus investments totaling $296,086, when including the matching funds. Recipients were selected from a competitive field of submissions requesting a total of $236,309. Individual awards ranged from $3,709 to $24,995.

The EIS proposals were reviewed by a group of faculty and administrative representatives, and their evaluations were used to produce a preliminary ranking. The evaluation process also took into account priority rankings from the college deans and existing infrastructure. Proposal requests that were considered most likely to result in increased research, scholarly and creative productivity were ranked the highest. A minimum 1:1 cost share was required. Vice President for Research and Economic Development Janet Nelson made the final funding decisions.

This is the fourth EIS award competition ORED has sponsored since 2017. In all, 41 proposals have been funded at a total of $624,384.

"I am pleased that ORED has been able to address critical equipment and infrastructure needs and continue to invest in the University of Idaho's research enterprise across all disciplines," Nelson said.

List of funded proposals:

  • Robert Caisley, chair of theatre arts, professor of theatre, head of dramatic writing, College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences. Light Board for Hartung Theatre. A new lighting board will be purchased to continue the tradition of making thought-provoking theatre for the campus and the greater Palouse.
  • Teresa Cohn, research assistant professor, College of Natural Resources. Taylor Wilderness Research Station Battery Replacement Project. Funding will be used to replace aging energy infrastructure at the U of I Taylor Wilderness Research Station.
  • Karla Eitel, associate research professor of natural resource conservation, director of education, McCall Outdoor Science School, College of Natural Resources. Building STEM Identity through the use of Science Tools. Funds will be used to purchase new LabQuest devices and sensors that will allow MOSS K12 participants to conduct research that relates to McCall Field Campus faculty research.
  • Lee Ostrom, Idaho Falls Center executive officer, associate dean, College of Engineering. Portable XFR for use in Supporting Material Research. Funds will be used to purchase an Olympus handheld X-ray fluorescence VMR analytical tool, which is used to rapidly provide elemental analysis on a wide range of inorganic and some organic materials.
  • Benjamin Oswald, director of Computational Resources Core, IBEST. Modernization of High-Performance Research Computation Infrastructure. Funds will be used to replace older servers, resulting in increased researcher productivity.
  • Paul Rowley, assistant professor, Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science. Renovation of a Research Laboratory for the Development of Therapeutics Against Human Pathogens. Funds will be used to repair laboratory space to achieve biosafety level two status required for the PI's research.
  • Jeff Seegmiller, professor, director of WWAMI Medical Education Program, WWAMI. Collaborative Healthcare Education and Research Using Patient Simulation. Funding will enable the creation of a collaborative training and research simulation center in the WWAMI Medical Education Building, which will support U of I interdisciplinary research efforts.
  • Sanaz Shafian, assistant professor, Department of Soil and Water Systems, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. ASD FieldSpec® 4 Hi-Res: High-Resolution Spectroradiometer. Purchasing the ASD spectroradiometer will help breeders, agronomists and entomologists to find the best varieties, best water/nutrient practices and distinguish pest/disease symptoms.
  • John Shovic, research faculty, College of Engineering. U of I Catfish Autonomous Submarine Inertial Navigation Experimental Equipment. Funds will be used to upgrade sensors used during underwater research.
  • Vanessa Sielert, director, Lionel Hampton School of Music, professor of music, College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences. Clarinet Augmentation. Purchases will be made to augment the university's clarinet offerings to enhance students' experiences in ensembles.
  • Brian Small, professor of fish physiology, director of the Hagerman Fish Culture Experiment Station, Aquaculture Research Institute. Hagerman Fish Culture Experiment Station (HFCES) Infrastructure Support. The HFCES laboratory will undergo necessary repairs to continue to support its research mission.
  • Steffen Werner, associate professor, Department of Psychology and Communication Studies, College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences. VR System to Investigate Spatialized Auditory Interfaces for Blind Users. The requested virtual reality system is an alternative to graphical menu options or similar displays presenting information to blind users.

About the University of Idaho

The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 12,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky and Western Athletic conferences. Learn more at