American Philosophical Society —
Lewis and Clark Fund for Exploration
and Field Research in Astrobiology

Note to PIs: The following program summary is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It does not replace the sponsor’s actual funding opportunity announcement. Always review the most recent version of the sponsor’s full announcement to verify that the deadline has not changed and to identify the most current program requirements.

About the fund

The Lewis and Clark Fund for Exploration and Field Research in Astrobiology is open to field studies in any area of interest to astrobiology. Applications will be reviewed by a committee that includes members of the NASA Astrobiology Institute, the APS, and the wider science community as needed. Recipients will be designated as Lewis and Clark Field Scholars in Astrobiology.

Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life on Earth and in the universe. It encompasses research in, among others, the fields of astronomy, chemistry, evolutionary biology, field and population biology, geology, microbiology, molecular biology, oceanography, paleontology, and planetary science. Astrobiology includes investigations of the geologic and fossil record to understand the conditions of the early Earth when life arose. Its scope also includes research of contemporary locations on Earth that might be similar to early earth and to environments elsewhere in our Solar System (such as on Mars, Europa, and Titan), which may be, or have been in the past, suitable for life. Astrobiology is also about understanding the characteristics of life, which requires investigations into extreme natural environments on Earth and, eventually, elsewhere.


Applicants must:

  • Be graduate students, postdocs, or junior scientists who wish to participate in field studies for their theses or for other purposes.
  • Be within five (5) years or fewer beyond their Ph.D. or equivalent degree, although, rarely, exceptions may be made.
  • Be a U.S. citizen, U.S. permanent resident, or foreign national formally affiliated with a U.S.-based institution and may carry out research anywhere in the world.
  • Applicants from outside of the United States and U.S citizens affiliated with foreign institutions may not apply.

Award amount

Amounts will depend on travel costs, but will ordinarily be in the range of several hundred dollars up to about $5,000.

Award period

Varies; dependent on dates of travel.

Application deadline

To be determined.

Learn more


Last updated: July 2021.