The Bush Administration is requesting an increase in the FY 2004 Engineering Activity's budget of 10.0%, or $48.6 million, as compared to the FY 2003 request. The $536.6 million request is14.0% higher than the activity's FY 2002 budget. As previously explained, the FY 2003 appropriations bill for the National Science Foundation has not been enacted.
The Engineering Activity has a wide range of programs. Information on a specific component of the Administration's request can be found in the budget document presented to Congress that is available at http//:www.nsf.gov/bfa/bud/fy2004/toc.htm . The Engineering Activity section can be found on pages 225-246.
There are six subactivities within the Engineering Activity:
Bioengineering and Environmental Systems: The FY 2004 request of $47.9 million is 9.2%, or $4.0 million, over the FY 2003 request. This is an increase of 15.9%, or $6.6 million, over the FY 2002 budget.
Chemical and Transport Systems: The FY 2004 request of $66.2 million is 12.3%, or $7.3 million, above the FY 2003 request. This is an increase of 15.7%, or $9.0 million, over the FY 2002 budget.
Civil and Mechanical Systems: The FY 2004 request of $64.4 million is 11.4%, or $6.6 million, above the FY 2003 request. This is an increase of 14.7%, or $8.3 million, over the FY 2002 budget.
Design, Manufacture, and Industrial Innovation: The FY 2004 request of $163.1 million is 15.5%, or $21.8 million, above the FY 2003 request. This is an increase of 20.8%, or $28.1 million, over the FY 2002 budget.
Electrical and Communications Systems: The FY 2004 request of $70.8 million is 6.1%, or $4.1 million, above the FY 2003 request. This is an increase of 9.3%, or $6.0 million, over the FY 2002 budget.
Engineering Education and Centers: The FY 2004 request of $124.3 million is 4.0%, or $4.8 million, above the FY 2003 request. This is an increase of 6.7%, or $7.8 million, over the FY 2002 budget.
One of the Engineering programs that has been identified as an FY 2004 "priority area" is nanotechnology. The introduction for this section states:
"Nanoscale Science and Engineering: In FY 2004, ENG will provide $106.85 million for Nanoscale Science and Engineering activities, an increase of $12.50 million over the FY 2003 Request of $94.35 million. ENG will support comprehensive research on nanotechnology for functional nanostructures, processing and fabrication of nanostructured materials, new devices and architectures, tools for investigation at nanoscale, and technologies with applications ranging from biology to environmental sensing. Requested funds expand research in the following areas: Manufacturing processes at the nanoscale; Bio-chemical-radiological-explosive detection and protection; Infrastructure; and Education and societal implications."
"In FY 2004, ENG support for the enhancement of infrastructure to conduct engineering research is funded at $10.75 million, an increase of $6.45 million over the FY 2003 Request of $4.30 million.
"Of this funding, $8.80 million will be provided to the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (NNIN), an integrated national network of user facilities that will support the future infrastructure needs for research and education in the burgeoning nanoscale science and engineering field. The facilities comprising this network will be diverse in capabilities, research areas, and geographic locations, and the network will have the flexibility to grow or reconfigure as needs arise. The NNIN will broadly support nanotechnology activities outlined in the National Nanotechnology Initiative investment strategy. It will provide users across the nation access to leading-edge fabrication and characterization tools and instruments in support of nanoscale science and engineering research, develop and maintain advanced research infrastructure, contribute to the education and training of a new workforce skilled in nanotechnology and the latest laboratory techniques, conduct outreach to the science and engineering communities, and explore the social and ethical implications of nanotechnology. The NNIN will supersede the National Nanofabrication Users Network (NNUN), initiated in 1994 and coming to the completion of NSF support at the end of 2003."