Status Report

NASA JSC Partnership RFI: Astromaterials Research and Exploraiton Science

By SpaceRef Editor
June 2, 2014
Filed under ,

Synopsis – May 28, 2014

General Information

    Solicitation Number: NNJ14ZBH067L

    Posted Date: May 28, 2014

    FedBizOpps Posted Date: May 28, 2014

    Recovery and Reinvestment Act Action: No

    Original Response Date: Dec 31, 2014

    Current Response Date: Dec 31, 2014

    Classification Code: A — Research and Development

    NAICS Code: 541712


Contracting Office Address

NASA/Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston Texas, 77058-3696, Mail Code: BH


The Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science (ARES) Directorate at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is seeking potential partners and team members interested in developing competitive proposals in response to NASA Announcements of Opportunity (AOs).

ARES has unique Agency responsibilities for curating all of NASA’s extraterrestrial samples and conducting measurements of the orbital debris environment. ARES has developed world-class expertise in the science of returned samples because of this curatorial responsibility and has developed the technical consensus for adopting mitigation measures to protect all users of the orbital environment because of this leadership role in orbital debris research. ARES has extensive past mission experience leading tactical mission planning, scientific operations, instrument development, recovery operations and curation activities in addition to science team analysis and interpretation of measurements. ARES seeks to leverage this past experience with the aid of partners who possess enabling capabilities for implementing science priorities for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD).

ARES is interested in potential partners and team members who can perform spacecraft design, payload design, systems integration and testing, mission operations, scientific investigations, instrument development and technology demonstrations. Information is also sought on potential partners and team members who can provide hardware, equipment or instrumentation necessary to implement proposed scientific investigations, research activities or Discovery missions.

This request for information (RFI) may be posted annually, and may be updated more frequently as information becomes available regarding ARES’s specific interests. ARES is currently considering responding, at a minimum, to the Discovery Program’s 2014 AO ( ), which is the focus of this RFI. The Discovery Program conducts Principal Investigator (PI)-led space science investigations in the SMD’s Planetary Division.

For questions regarding these opportunities, please contact Lee Graham, Astromaterials Research & Exploration Science,, 281-244-5192; or P. Lamar Mueller, Contracting Officer,, 281-483-7158.

Eligibility Requirements:

All categories of U.S. and non-U.S. organizations, including educational institutions, industry, not-for-profit institutions, and other U.S. Government Agencies, may respond to this RFI. Participation by non-U.S. organizations is welcome but subject to NASA’s policy of no exchange of funds, in which each Government supports its own national participants and associated costs.

Response Instructions:

Pertinent information from questions and answers may be shared with all interested parties, without disclosing the identity of the sources of the questions.

Written responses to this RFI shall:

1. Not exceed 5 pages per functional area (5 areas listed below).

2. Use an Arial font text with a size not smaller than 12 point.

3. Include all information requested in this notice.

4. Provide a Point of Contact and email address to address questions from NASA.

5. Send responses in PDF format to: and (Potential partners may submit responses by email at any time).

This RFI is for information and planning purposes and is not to be construed as a commitment by the Government, nor will the Government pay for information solicited. Submitted responses will be maintained for possible future opportunities for one year.

All responders shall identify which announcement(s) is appropriate for their capability, if known; however, responses will be considered for partnering for any present and future opportunities. Responses to this notice may serve as the basis for selection of proposal partners. Additional information may be requested to help in the selection process.

This partnering RFI solicits information in the following five (5) areas: (1) spacecraft or subsystems; (2) payload delivery capability; (3) payload, instrumentation or subsystems; (4) mission operations and ground systems; and (5) scientific and technology concepts. For each of these five areas, the responder shall describe:

– Capabilities and technology readiness levels (TRL) if applicable/known for those capabilities

– Critical or challenging areas overcome in previous work

– Relevance and compliance to the applicable mission class (class A, B, C, or D)

– Integration and Test (I&T) capabilities

– ROM schedules and costs for development

– Skills available to support the effort described through all mission phases

– Available support facilities for fabrication, I&T, storage, etc.

– Resources allocated to the potential proposal development phase

If describing a payload delivery capability to a planetary and/or small body, the responder shall describe operational challenges in that environment and relevant past experience working in that environment. Payload accommodation aspects of the delivery capability (e.g. payload mass, volume, power) and any relevant performance considerations (dependence on landing altitude, operation in deep space, etc.) shall be described as well.

If describing a scientific and SMD-related technology concept, the responder shall provide a research topic or mission concept related to the particular solicitation of interest, why the topic is relevant to the solicitation, and a concept of operations for the mission. The responder shall also identify existing or proposed partners, their role, the role of the responder’s organization, and the role of ARES in the proposed mission.

If providing a spacecraft, subsystems, payload, payload delivery capability, instrumentation, mission operations and scientific technology concept does not apply but the responder has a science spaceflight mission approach and would like to explore partnership opportunities with ARES, please contact Lee Graham,, 281-244-5192.

Responses shall include the following:

Name and address of organization; point of contact, email address, and phone number; which type of potential partnership the responder is interested in; technical questions outlined above; and a list of relevant partners/customers over the past five years. If the responder is a commercial entity, responses shall also include: size of business and number of employees; average annual revenue for past 3 years; ownership (large, small, small disadvantaged, 8(a), HUBZone, and/or woman-owned) and whether the company is U.S. or internationally-owned; number of years in business; and affiliate information: parent company (US or international), joint venture partners, potential teaming partners (prime contractor, if potential sub, or subcontractors, if potential prime); list of customers covering the past five years (highlight relevant work performed, point of contact, and phone number).

No solicitation exists; therefore, please do not request a copy of a solicitation. If a solicitation is released it will be synopsized in FedBizOps and on the NASA Acquisition Internet Service. It is the responders’ responsibility to monitor these sites for the release of any solicitation or synopsis. Information about major upcoming JSC procurement actions are available at:

All submitted responses to this RFI will not be returned. All responders to this notice should be aware that NASA support service contractors may have access to their proposals. All information received in response to this notice that is marked Proprietary will be handled and protected accordingly. NASA support service contractors are under an obligation to keep third-party proprietary information in confidence. By submitting a response to this notice, the responder is deemed to have consented to release of proprietary information to such NASA support service contractors for the purposes stated in this announcement.

Acronyms List:

– ARES – Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science

– AO – Announcement of Opportunity

– JSC – Johnson Space Center

– I&T – Integration and Test

– NASA – National Aeronautics and Space Administration

– PI – Principal Investigator

– POC – Point of Contact

– ROM – Rough Order of Magnitude

– TRL – Technology Readiness Level

Contracting Office Address:

NASA/Johnson Space Center, BH, Houston, TX 77058

Point of Contact(s):

P. Lamar Mueller, Contracting Officer,, 281-244-7254

Lee Graham, Astromaterials Research & Exploration Science,, 281-244-5192 

Point of Contact

    Name:Perry L. Mueller

    Title:Contracting Officer



    Name:J. R. Carpentier

    Title:Contracting Officer




SpaceRef staff editor.