Call for Pre-proposals

The Call for Pre-proposals has been closed.


In order to efficiently achieve the highest possible fulfillment of the research goals of its third medium-term research plans, the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) is planning long-distance, long-term multidisciplinary research cruises (large-scale research cruises) using its vessels that will be open to both Japanese and overseas universities and research institutes. We are planning to hold a workshop to plan these cruises, and are calling for both Japanese and overseas investigators to submit pre-proposals as detailed below.

1. Submission Details

(1) Research details

We are calling for pre-proposals in the following areas for large-scale research cruises related to JAMSTEC's medium-term plan.

1) Submarine resources R&D

  • Investigation into processes and spatial and temporal variation of flux between solid earth and hydrosphere
  • Comparative Study of Ecosystem Alteration Mechanism in Developing Seabed and Changing Ocean
  • Geobio-informatics: Interactions between the Geosphere and the Biosphere

2) Ocean and global environmental change R&D

  • Research to investigate ocean acidification and its impact on lower trophic levels of ecosystems.
  • Hydrographic research to investigate global ocean circulation, distributions of heat content and materials, and their mid- and long-term changes.
  • Comprehensive research in the Arctic Ocean to investigate sea ice melt and its impact on the oceanic environment and climate.
  • Observational research to investigate tropical climate such as ENSO, IOD, MJO and so on.

3) Oceanic seismogenic zone R&D

  • Research with the goal constructing a new conceptual model of a seismogenic zone through a comparative study in subduction zones. We will discuss future plans for big geophysical cruises including large-scale, high resolution, seismic seafloor imaging, sediment sampling, monitoring of crustal activity and integration with bore hole data

4) Marine biosciences R&D

  • Interdisciplinary exploration of the diverse structure and function of extreme ecosystems, such as deep-sea faunal and subseafloor microbial ecosystems, in order to understand the interactions in these systems among the environment, microorganisms and fauna, and evolutionary processes.
  • Exploration of Limits and Biosphere in Deep Earth

5) Development and utilization of advanced research technologies

  • Integrated Field Tests of Seafloor Mineral Resources Survey System
  • Investigation of the generation and transition processes of oceanic and continental plates and magma
  • Investigation of the relationships between the water, carbon and energy cycles and sub-seafloor ecological processes
  • Observation of records of dramatic earth history events that remain in the sediment record
  • Simulation and the physics, chemistry and geological exploration of mantle and core

(2) Cruise period

This call is for pre-proposals for research to be conducted between April, 2016 and March, 2019 (FY2016 and FY2018).

(3) Conditions for participation

This call is for pre-proposals that would require at least 100 days (inclusive of transit days) at sea to complete. You may also submit proposals totaling at least 100 days split between multiple vessels or cruises. In other words, we don't accept the pre-proposals that would require less than 100 days in one pre-proposal.
Note: Sea areas are not limited in this call except conflict areas.

(4) Research vessels

We plan to use the vessels listed below, but this is subject to change.

1) NATSUSHIMA: cruises with or without HYPER-DOLPHIN remotely operated survey vehicle

2) YOKOSUKA: cruises with or without the SHINKAI 6500 submersible research vehicle and URASHIMA deep sea cruising AUV

3) KAIREI: cruises with or without KAIKO 7000 II or KAIKO Mk-IV remotely operated survey vehicles

4) MIRAI: cruises without survey vehicles (only in FY2018)

5) A long-range seabed research vessel currently under construction might also become available.

For more information about the research vessels;

2. Pre-proposal submission period

Friday, August 22nd, 2014 - at 11:59 PM on Friday, September 19th, 2014 (Japan standard time, UTC+9)

3. Application qualifications

(1) Persons working in an educational/research/technical capacity at a Japanese/overseas university or research institute
Note: Postgraduate and undergraduate students cannot apply, but they can participate in the workshop as joint researchers for proposals submitted by qualified applicants.

(2) In order to be considered for participation in the cruises and work up research projects, applicants or their representatives must participate in the workshop (Click HERE for detail) to be held at JAMSTEC's Yokohama Institute for Earth Sciences on November 6-7, 2014.

4. Application method

Download and complete the Large Scale Research Cruises Pre-proposal form, and send it to the e-mail address specified in “7. Inquiries and proposal submission” within the application period.

[Download]  Pre-proposal form

5. Screening of applications

(1) Pre-screening

A screening committee composed of JAMSTEC managers and staff (see Reference 1) will screen submitted research proposals. Applicants will be informed of the result of this screening in late September 2014. Applicants (or joint researchers) for proposals that pass the pre-screening will be required to attend the workshop detailed below.

(For your reference) Points to be reviewed in pre-screening

1) Suitability for a large-scale research cruise (including relevance to JAMSTEC's medium term plan)

2) Merit of the research proposal's scientific/technological goals

3) Suitability of the research plan

(2) Workshop

We will hold a large-scale research cruise workshop (Click HERE for detail) at JAMSTEC's Yokohama Institute for Earth Sciences on November 6 – 7, 2014. Group discussions will be conducted by research field (Day 1) and ocean area (Day 2). The moderators for each of the Day 2 ocean area discussions will submit a written report to the secretariat.
JAMSTEC will refer to these reports in the planning of the large-scale cruises.

6. Other points to note

(1) Large-scale research cruises

JAMSTEC will review the reports, select and then announce cruise plans. No decision has yet been made on the number of cruise plans that can be implemented.

(2) Chief scientists

JAMSTEC officers and employees will be appointed as chief scientists for the selected large-scale research cruises. Non-JAMSTEC personnel will participate as joint researchers.

(3) Travel expenses

JAMSTEC will not reimburse travel expenses for workshop participants.

(4) Research proposal distribution

Since submitted research proposals will be distributed to workshop participants, please do not include any information that you would prefer not to disclose to others.

(5) Data and sample ownership

Data and samples obtained during large-scale research cruises belong to JAMSTEC except in the case of special agreements with parties other than JAMSTEC.

(6) Coordination with other countries with coastlines

In the case of research in foreign territorial waters, JAMSTEC will handle any research approval applications and other procedural requirements (ABS application, environmental impact assessment reporting, special permissions for research within protected marine areas, etc.) of the laws of concerned countries.

(7) Burden of expenses for the cruises

Basically, JAMSTEC will cover fee for operating the ships and basic equipments that are fixed on board, but fee related to the science activities of the Science Parties will have to be paid by themselves. See THIS PAGE for more details.

(8) Other

Travel on our research vessels in the event that your proposal is selected for a large-scale research cruise will be subject to the conditions applicable to FY2015 proposals for use of JAMSTEC research vessels.

7. Inquiries and proposal submission

Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology
Planning Group, Research Fleet Department, Marine Technology and Engineering Center