Status Report

NASA Langley Teaming Opportunity for Earth Venture to Calibrate Lunar Spectral Irradiance

By SpaceRef Editor
March 10, 2015
Filed under , ,

Synopsis – Mar 09, 2015


General Information


    Solicitation Number: SS-LunarCal

    Posted Date: Mar 09, 2015

    FedBizOpps Posted Date: Mar 09, 2015

    Recovery and Reinvestment Act Action: No

    Original Response Date: Apr 10, 2015

    Current Response Date: Apr 10, 2015

    Classification Code: A — Research and Development

    NAICS Code: 541712


Contracting Office Address


NASA/Langley Research Center, Mail Stop 12, Industry Assistance Office, Hampton, VA 23681-0001






This partnering synopsis solicits potential partners to participate in a proposal development activity that addresses the technical objectives and development of a complete small satellite mission in response to the anticipated Earth Venture Mission (EVM-2) or Instrument (EVI-4) Investigation Announcements of Opportunity (AO) expected to be released in the May of 2015 and in Fall of 2016, respectively. Earth Venture is a Program element within the Earth System Science Pathfinder Program (ESSP) consisting of a series of innovative, integrated, science-driven approaches to pressing Earth system science issues. The goal of NASA’s Earth Venture mission portfolio is to provide frequent flight opportunities for high quality, high value, focused Earth science investigations that can be accomplished under a not-to-exceed cost cap and that can be developed and flown relatively quickly, generally in 4-5 years or less. For additional information on the Venture Class program visit ESSP website:


Earth Venture proposed investigations will be evaluated and selected through a single step competitive process. This single step is the solicitation, submission, evaluation, and selection of proposals prepared in response to an AO. NASA Headquarters intend to select at least one mission or instrument to proceed to development for flight and operations as the outcome of this process.


Participation in this partnering synopsis is open to all categories of U.S. and non-U.S. organizations, including educational institutions, industry, not-for-profit institutions, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, as well as NASA Centers and other U.S. Government Agencies. Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Other Minority Universities (OMUs), small disadvantaged businesses (SDBs), veteran-owned small businesses, service disabled veteran-owned small businesses, HUBzone small businesses, and women-owned small businesses (WOSBs) are encouraged to apply. 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.


This partnership opportunity focuses on advancing the components and subsystem technologies necessary to implement the high-accuracy recurring measurements of the spectral lunar irradiance from a small satellite flying in a low Earth orbit. The goal of this effort is to establish accurate SI-traceable calibration source for spaceborne sensors in reflected solar wavelength range. To meet this goal, the required operations include: (a) frequent measurements of lunar irradiance spectrum and (b) frequent measurements of solar irradiance spectrum for on-orbit instrument calibration purpose. From an observational perspective in LEO, the apparent size of the Moon is roughly the same as that of the Sun, with both being viewed at an angle of approximately one-half of a degree. It is important to note that for science associated with this mission there is no requirement for Earth observations, which should reduce the design requirements for this instrument.


NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) is seeking potential partner(s) for space technologies in all of the following: (a) compact spectrometer with moderate resolution (approx. 4 nm) for reflected solar wavelength range approx. 350 nm to 2300 nm; (b) compact spectrometers with moderate resolution (approx. 4 nm) for partial reflected solar wavelength coverage: visible approx. 350 nm to 900 nm, or near-infrared approx. 800 nm to 2300 nm; (c) implementation techniques for meeting rigorous instrument calibration requirements with combined uncertainty < 1% (k=2, SI-traceable); (e) validation and verification of sensor calibration and overall performance on-orbit; (f ) instrument electronics with wide dynamic range in integration time approx. 1000 or greater); and (g) instrument mass and power optimization for deployment on a small satellite (e.g. total observatory mass < 50 kg).


This partnering opportunity does not guarantee selection for award of any contracts or other agreements, nor is it to be construed as a commitment by NASA to pay for the information solicited. It is expected that the partner(s) selected would provide (at no cost to NASA) conceptual instrument designs (with sufficient details to enable accurate mass, volume, power, telemetry requirements), operational concepts, calibration and characterization definition and planning, payload constraints/interface analysis, technical risk analysis, and would participate in cost and schedule analysis as part of the mission concept proposal. Partner selections will be made by LaRC based on the following criteria:


(1) Space Technology Solutions. This criterion evaluates the proposed space technology solutions and implementation techniques based on the requirements noted above. (2) Facilities. This criterion evaluates the proposers facilities (development, testing, and analyses) to conduct the development or demonstration of the proposed task. (3) Cost. This criterion assesses the cost estimate for the space technology solution being offered.


RESPONSE INSTRUCTIONS: Responses to this partnering synopsis shall be limited to eight (8) pages (exclusive of resumes) in not less than 12-point font. Responses must address each of the aforementioned evaluation criteria. All responses shall be submitted to NASA LaRC via e-mail by 4:00 PM EST on April 10, 2015 to: and .


Point of Contact


    Name: Robert B. Gardner

    Title: Contracting Officer

    Phone: 757-864-2525

    Fax: 757-864-7898



    Name: Connie Snapp

    Title: Contract Specialist

    Phone: 757-864-7928

    Fax: 757-864-1450


SpaceRef staff editor.