Next-Generation Microelectronics in Support of Artificial Intelligence (MicroE4AI) Seedling Research Topics
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UPDATE: Q&A Round 4 (Q20 - Q31) has been uploaded. The proposal due date remains unchanged. UPDATE: Amendment 001 to the BAA has been uploaded to extend the period for Q&As to June 15, 2021 and to extend the proposal due date to July 7, 2021.Questions and Answers (Q&A) Round 3(Q.18- Q.19) have also been uploaded. Questions that were submitted after the previous Q&A due date will be answered in a subsequent round. UPDATE:Questions and Answers (Q&A) Round 2(Q.15- Q.17) have been uploaded. No changes were made to the BAA. White paper and proposal due dates remain unchanged. UPDATE: Questions and Answers (Q&A) Round 1 (Q.1 - Q.14) and a WORD version of the Appendix A proposal attachments have been uploaded. No changes were made to the BAA. White paper and proposal due dates remain unchanged. IARPA is soliciting proposals for early-stage research (which IARPA refers to as seedlings) for Next-Generation Microelectronics in Support of Artificial Intelligence. Initially, interested parties are encouraged to submit a white paper. White papers are due NLT May 17, 2021 12:00PM EST. Proposals are due June 30, 2021 4:00PM EST. The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) invests in high-risk/high-payoff research programs that have the potential to provide our nation with an overwhelming intelligence advantage. The increasing utilization of, and dependency on, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) makes the development of faster, more energy efficient, and more resilient computing important to the future of the national security of the United States and the Nations leadership in AI/ML. The ability to implement AI and ML depends critically on computing models that today are limited with respect to data storage, data movement and data analysis. Faster, more energy efficient and resilient computing requires that challenges including the physical limits on transistors, electrical interconnects, and memory elements be overcome. To date, performance gains, driven by the need to exploit AI, have been derived from chip specialization including Graphics Processing Units (GPUs), Tensor Processing Units (TPUs), Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) and Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs). To lay the foundation for long term advancements in computing technologies, a more unified approach encompassing Research and Development (R&D) into the chemistry and physics of new materials, microelectronic devices and circuits, computing architectures and algorithm design is needed. Materials scientists, chemists, and physicists, circuit designers, engineers, communications, runtime and memory architects, as well as algorithm designers and application coders must work across the historic boundaries that have separated these disciplines to achieve the next generation of highly complex systems. Multidisciplinary teams co-designing microelectronics for AI will lead to unprecedented capabilities to ensure the U.S. maintains its superiority in this worldwide competition. In particular, IARPA seeks multidisciplinary teams who can co-design micro-electronics for AI technologies to assist with: the improvement of the hardware/software/algorithm/architecture ecosystem for specific AI applications; and the development of new science/materials/processing that improve the performance of the microelectronics used to run AI applications. These technologies align well with needs of the intelligence and national security communities and are, therefore, under the purview of IARPAs research mission. Successful technology solutions will require creative, multidisciplinary methods, paradigm changing thinking, and transformative approaches. Preference will be given to research with the ability to revolutionize hardware-software integration from material properties to hardware design, to system architecture, to software implementation. Multidisciplinary approaches derived from life sciences, and/or inspired by artistic, anthropological, economical, and other non-traditional disciplines are welcome and encouraged. This BAA solicits short-term, limited scope research in topic areas that are not addressed by emerging or ongoing IARPA programs or other published IARPA solicitations. It is primarily, but not solely, intended for early-stage research that may lead to larger, focused programs through a separate BAA in the future.