Status Report

NASA Presolicitation Notice: 2-Year Extension to Support the Extended High Energy Transient Explorer (HETE2) mission

By SpaceRef Editor
November 5, 2002
Filed under , ,

General Information

  • Document Type: Presolicitation Notice
  • Solicitation Number: RFP5-08518
  • Posted Date: Nov 04, 2002
  • Original Response Date: Nov 25, 2002
  • Original Archive Date: Nov 04, 2003
  • Current Archive Date:
  • Classification Code: A — Research & Development

Contracting Office Address

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, Code 210.S, Greenbelt, MD 20771


NASA/GSFC plans to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for a two-year extension to contract NASW-4690, for the extended Mission Operations and Data Analysis (MO&DA) phase of the High Energy Transient Explorer (HETE-2) mission on a sole source basis and in accordance with 10 U.S.C. 2304(c)(1), Only One Responsible Source.

HETE-2 is a free-flying satellite dedicated to the study of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) using soft X-ray, medium X-ray, and gamma-ray instruments. The mission utilizes dedicated tracking, data acquisition, mission operations, and data analysis facilities established and operated by MIT and its Science Team members since the mission launch in October 2000. MIT built the satellite, and, along with its science team partners, the specific instruments in conjunction with the end-to-end concept they developed for the operations of the platform and for the scientific analysis, b) they established the Primary Ground Stations (S-Band) and the Burst Alert Network (VHF-band) that utilize MIT-developed communications protocols with the spacecraft to acquire the science data, c) they developed the ground data system software to provide the command and control support for the mission, and d) they developed customized software to analyze the raw data and produce higher level science products.

Only MIT (specifically the Center for Space Research) possesses the necessary high level of engineering expertise and experience concerning the detailed design of the spacecraft, the instruments, the ground support antennas, and the ground data system to effectively operate the mission and achieve mission goals. MIT’s knowledge, experience, and facilities will enable it to continue to provide excellent support to the mission. It would be extremely difficult for another contractor to provide the same level of support without a major interruption to the program underway, due to the learning curve of performing unique science mission operations and data analysis. The learning curve and delay would also add additional cost, which is unacceptable to the Project given the budgetary guidelines set forth for this program. Therefore, MIT is considered the only responsible source capable of fulfilling this requirement.

All responsible sources desiring consideration are requested to fully identify their interest and capabilities within 15 days of the date of publication of this synopsis to the point-of-contact specified below. Companies seeking to contest this 2-year sole source contract extension should fully identify their interest and capabilities within 15 days after publication of this synopsis on the NAIS or Commerce Business Daily. Responses to the synopsis received after 15 days or without the required information will be considered non-responsive to the synopsis and will not be considered. A determination by the Government not to compete this proposed effort on a full and open competition basis, based upon responses to this notice is solely within the discretion of the government. See note 22.

The Government does not intend to acquire a commercial item using FAR Part 12. See Note 26. Oral communications are not acceptable in response to this notice. All responsible sources may submit an offer, which shall be considered by the agency. An Ombudsman has been appointed. See NASA Specific Note “B”. Any referenced notes can be viewed at the following URL:

Original Point of Contact

Dawn M. Fountain, Contracting Officer, Phone (301) 286-3815, Fax (301) 286-1773, Email

Email your questions to Dawn M. Fountain at

SpaceRef staff editor.