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Spectrum and Wireless Innovation enabled by Future Technologies - Satellite-Terrestrial Coexistence (SWIFT-SAT)

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Important information for proposers

All proposals must be submitted in accordance with the requirements specified in this funding opportunity and in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) that is in effect for the relevant due date to which the proposal is being submitted. It is the responsibility of the proposer to ensure that the proposal meets these requirements. Submitting a proposal prior to a specified deadline does not negate this requirement.

Supports research on techniques to overcome radio interference and light pollution conflicts between satellite users (communications, earth sensing) and terrestrial users (communications, astronomy) enabling usage growth to benefit society.


The National Science Foundation's Directorates for Mathematical & Physical Sciences (MPS), Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE), Engineering (ENG), and Geosciences (GEO) are coordinating efforts to identify new concepts and ideas on Spectrum and Wireless Innovation enabled by Future Technologies (SWIFT). A key aspect of the SWIFT program, now in its fourth year, is its focus on effective spectrum utilization and/or coexistence techniques, especially with passive uses, which have received less attention from researchers. Coexistence is when two or more applications use the same frequency band at the same time and/or at the same location, yet do not adversely affect one another. Coexistence is especially difficult when at least one of the spectrum users is passive, i.e., not transmitting any radio frequency (RF) energy. Within the general area of the SWIFT program, this SWIFT-SAT solicitation focuses on satellite-terrestrial coexistence and covers both radio-spectrum and optical-wavelength coexistence.

Examples of coexisting systems may include passive and active systems (e.g., radio astronomy and wireless broadband communication systems, or airborne and elevated transmitters such as satellites) or two active systems (e.g., space-borne radar and terrestrial communications). Example topics include communications at scale such as large-scale MIMO and intelligence surfaces, reconfigurable transceivers, energy efficient and low-power communications, innovative spectrum use and management such as joint communication and sensing, and resilient spectrum sharing, just to name a few. Another topic of interest is the growing challenge of coexistence between ground-based astronomy and large networks of low-Earth orbiting satellites, including sunlight reflections, thermal emissions, and optical/infrared inter-satellite links. As ground-based optical/infrared astronomy continues to advance in sensitivity and breadth of sky coverage, the need to maintain and enhance this capability in an increasingly congested optical/infrared/radio environment will become increasingly acute. Research projects to address these issues may involve innovative satellite technology and designs that take into account satellite constellation requirements (e.g., thermal balance), innovations in astronomical instrumentation or post-processing algorithms, advancements in coordination methodologies (e.g., use of telemetry or orbital information), and other solutions.

The goal of these research projects may be the creation of new technology or significant enhancements to existing wireless infrastructure, with an aim to benefit society by improving spectrum utilization and ancillary challenges, beyond mere spectrum efficiency. The SWIFT program encourages collaborative team research that transcends the traditional boundaries of individual disciplines.



Artificial Intelligence


Enhancing Access to the Radio Spectrum


Earth Exploration-Satellite service




Internet of Things


International Telecommunication Union


Medical Implant Communication System


National Radio Dynamic Zone


Platform on Advanced Wireless Research


Radio Astronomy Service


Radio Frequency


Radio Frequency Interference


Radio Frequency Identification Device


Radio Regulations


Spectrum Efficiency, Energy Efficiency, and Security


Unmanned Aircraft Systems

Program contacts

John M. Chapin
jchapin@nsf.gov (703) 292-8222 MPS/AST
Christopher J. Davis
chrdavis@nsf.gov (703) 292-4910 MPS/AST
Jonathan V. Williams
jonwilli@nsf.gov (703) 292-2455 MPS/AST
Alhussein A. Abouzeid
aabouzei@nsf.gov (703) 292-7855 CISE/CNS
Murat Torlak
mtorlak@nsf.gov (703) 292-7748
Huaiyu Dai
hdai@nsf.gov (703) 292-4568 ENG/ECCS
Jenshan Lin
jenlin@nsf.gov (703) 292-7360 ENG/ECCS
Lisa M. Winter
lwinter@nsf.gov (703) 292-8519 GEO/AGS

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