Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS)


To support projects aimed at the development and sustainability of a national and international integrated ocean observing system designed to collect, monitor and disseminate marine environment data in an interoperable, reliable, timely and user-specified manner by leveraging federal, regional and private-sector partnerships.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Agency: Department of Commerce
Office: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2014: IOOS executed Data Management and Communications (DMAC)s including functional and useful IOOS data catalog; critical mass of client software; QARTOD manuals published for temp/salinity and quality flags; engaged other Federal agencies and non-Federal partners in their adoption of IOOS recommended standards and protocols. These efforts are aligned with the three National Ocean Service (NOS) priorities: (a) Improve end-to-end Response, Recovery, Restoration and Resiliency; (b) Enhance Coastal Marine Resource Conservation; and (c) Enhance Visibility and Relevance of NOS to the Nation. Fiscal Year 2015: The U.S. IOOS Program Office began accepting applications from qualified organizations to become certified Regional Information Coordination Entities (RICEs) under the authority of the Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation System Act of 2009 (ICOOS Act). Certification will demonstrate that entities integrated into the System are, for the purposes of determining liability arising from the dissemination and use of observation data, considered part of NOAA. IOOS continued to build on the Marine Sensor Innovation Program, expanding to a total of seven funded projects. Fiscal Year 2016: IOOS intends to complete a programmatic environmental assessment (PEA) of the observing activities regularly occurring in the environment as a direct result of cooperative agreements funded by this program. The PEA will demonstrate the program’s commitment to fully consider the impacts of NOAA’s proposed actions on the quality of the human environment. IOOS will issue cooperative agreements to continue with the development and operation of the regional component of the U.S. IOOS and a national sensor and evaluation program.
Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation System Act of 2009, 33 U.S.C 3601-3610.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Organizations and individuals with professional expertise in the sciences, engineering and economics that demonstrate how participation in the IOOS effort builds on and furthers the progress of observing system development funded by this agency.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Organizations and individuals with professional expertise in the sciences, engineering and economics that demonstrate how participation in the IOOS effort builds on and furthers the progress of observing system development funded by this agency.
For specific information regarding required credentials and documentation refer to applicable federal funding opportunities posted on, 2 CFR 200 and other associated terms and conditions. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is required. An environmental impact assessment is required for this program. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program.
Award Procedure
Refer to procedural steps identified in federal funding opportunities posted on
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
The agency may take up to 240 days after the proposal submission deadline. Refer to specifics outlined in federal funding opportunities posted on
Not Applicable.
Refer to 2 CFR 200 and other terms and conditions associated with specific financial assistance awards.
How are proposals selected?
Proposals are subject to office evaluations, technical reviews, administrative reviews, and externals reviews, if applicable, taking into consideration primarily scientific merit and application to the goals of NOAA and the relevant federal program office.
How may assistance be used?
IOOS is working to link national and regional observations, data management and modeling to provide required data and information on local to global scales. Assistance will be used to deliver the data and information needed to increase understanding of our oceans, coasts and great lakes, so decision makers can take action to improve safety, enhance the economy, and protect the environment. Uses will be in the following areas (1) Observations; (2) Data Management; (3) Modeling; (4) Research and Development; and (5) Education and Outreach. Refer to federal funding opportunities for specific uses and restrictions. Financial assistance awards are subject to 2 CFR 200. Available funding is contingent upon appropriation.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
No program reports are required. No cash reports are required. Performance Progress Reports are required in accordance to 2 CFR 200 any terms and conditions applicable at the time of award. No expenditure reports are required. Monitoring is required in accordance to 2 CFR 200 any terms and conditions applicable at the time of award.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. Audits are required as defined in 2 CFR 200 and other terms and conditions associated with the award.
Records will be retained in accordance with 2 CFR 200 and other terms and conditions associated with the award.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formulas are not applicable to this program.
Matching requirements are not applicable to this program.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
The period of performance for financial assistance awards may not exceed 5 years. Refer to the specific terms and conditions associated with an award. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Funds are released as required and agreed to in the terms and conditions associated with each financial assistance award.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices. The current listing of non-federal regional partners can be found online at
Headquarters Office
Zdenka S. Willis 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910 Phone: 301-427-2420
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants) FY 14 $28,296,924; FY 15 est $29,337,913; and FY 16 est $29,500,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Estimate not available.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Regulations and guidelines are available in 2 CFR 200 and the Department of Commerce Grants and Cooperative Agreement Policy Manual.
Examples of Funded Projects
Fiscal Year 2014: IOOS established a research and development program to develop and improve marine sensors. The IOOS Marine Sensor Innovation Improvement Program makes competitive, extramural awards available. Resources are targeted to sensor systems that are beyond their research phase, with specific emphasis on transitional and life cycle costs, including data management, overall operations, and maintenance expenses.

Marine Sensor Innovation projects include detection of ice frazils in the Arctic; utilization of environmental sensor processors to detect Harmful Algal Blooms in Juan de Fuca in near-real time; development of an integrated nutrient observatory in Northeastern U.S.; integration of the Imaging Flow CytoBot (IFCB) in the South San Francisco Bay to monitor HABs; and development and testing of new, low-cost ocean acidification sensors in the Pacific Northwest. Fiscal Year 2015: IOOS is working with federal and non-federal partners to launch demonstration projects for the U.S. Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (Marine BON), which is being designed to integrate across existing monitoring programs, fill biodiversity observing gaps, and make biodiversity data more accessible. Successful projects will be supported by NOAA, NASA, BOEM and possibly other partners. Fiscal Year 2016: IOOS expects to make eleven competitively selected awards to continue the implementation and development of regional coastal ocean observing systems. IOOS expects successful awardees to serve as a Regional Association responsible for operating the Regional Coastal Observing System. IOOS expects to make one competitively selected award to continue progress in the area of verification and validation of observing technologies for studying and monitoring coastal and ocean environments.