Status Report

NASA Presolicitation Notice: Quick Look Downrange Overflight Risk Assessment Tool

By SpaceRef Editor
January 25, 2005
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General Information

Document Type: Presolicitation Notice
Solicitation Number: NNK05096581Q
Posted Date: Jan 25, 2005
Original Response Date: Jan 31, 2005
Current Response Date: Jan 31, 2005
Original Archive Date: Jan 25, 2006
Current Archive Date: Jan 25, 2006
Classification Code: A — Research & Development
Naics Code: 541710 — Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences

Contracting Office Address

NASA/John F. Kennedy Space Center, Procurement, Kennedy Space Center, FL 32899


NASA/KSC has a requirement for research and development entitled, “Quick Look Downrange Overflight Risk Assessment Tool.”     The goal of this task is to deliver a suite of tools, based in a Geographic Information System (GIS) environment, which will allow NASA to perform simple risk calculations specifically for near trajectory risk to downrange populations.    

CORAL will serve as the main risk estimation tool; however, work will be required to migrate the current research-oriented software tool to a user oriented platform.    

A population extraction tool will leverage LandScan Global Population data to construct a seamless population corridor for any sample trajectory.    

In addition to population data, a library of casualty areas for generic launch vehicles will allow NASA to estimate debris hazards without performing complex debris catalog verification.    

Lastly, a trajectory library will assist NASA in estimating an impact trace and corridor width based on a simple trajectory.    

The following tasks will be performed during the study:     (1) Conduct a kickoff meeting to discuss tasking, schedule and deliverables. Useful discussion topics include: launch vehicles previously selected and why, trajectory selection, and sample payloads. The intended use of RTI downrange risk tools within the scope of launch vehicle selection will also be addressed. Obtain a copy of ESRI”s ArcView 9.0.    

(2) Code the main risk processes and algorithms within CORAL into a user oriented software suite. Particular attention will be paid to user interface, ease of use, and future supportability.    

(3) Create a population extraction tool that assembles population data based on LandScan 2002 population data from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The tool will be designed to ensure any risk estimate using LandScan population data is computed using a seamless population coverage along the ground trace of a launch vehicle. (4) Compile casualty area estimates for sample launch vehicles. Casualty areas for sample generic payloads based on dimensions and weights will also be provided.    

Integrate this set of casualty areas into the downrange risk estimation toolset as user selectable inputs. (5) Compute sample impact traces and estimate corridor widths based on each vehicle. Integrate this set of impact traces and corridor widths into the downrange risk estimation toolset as user selectable inputs. (6) Perform software testing on the integrated toolset to ensure results match output from original CORAL algorithms. (7) Finalize documentation for the downrange risk estimation toolset.    

(8) Prepare lesson plans for downrange risk estimation toolset training. Training will include installation and use of the downrange risk estimation toolset. NASA/KSC intends to purchase these professional services from RTI International, 3040 Cornwallis Road, Research Triangle Park, NC     27709-2194; Email:; Web: This sole source procurement is entered into under the authority of 10 U.S.C. 2304(c)(1), only one responsible source and no other supplies or services will satisfy agency requirements.    

The product required from RTI is a quick look downrange overflight risk assessment toolset to include a global population database, generic vehicle casualty area estimates, and associated sample trajectories.    

Overflight risk estimation tools developed and used by RTI are the result of rigorous analyses tasks that have been performed by RTI for the USAF 45th Space Wing, the FAA Office of Commercial Space Transportation, and NASA Wallops Flight Facility. Thus, past projects have given RTI a high fidelity baseline upon which to develop a quick-look toolset. It is, therefore, in the best interest of the government to conduct this effort with RTI based on their skills and knowledge of overflight risk assessments and based on the application of this study to the LSP office needs: this work would allow the LSP office to perform simple risk calculations for downrange populations in their launch services selection process.    

The Government intends to acquire a commercial item/service using FAR Part 12.    

Interested organizations may submit their capabilities and qualifications to perform the effort in writing to the identified point of contact not later than 4:30 p.m. local time on January 31, 2005.    

Such capabilities/qualifications will be evaluated solely for the purpose of determining whether or not to conduct this procurement on a competitive basis.    

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. Oral communications are not acceptable in response to this notice. All responsible sources may submit an offer which shall be considered by the agency. Offers may be emailed to: by the time and date set for closing (1/31/2005 not later than 4:30 p.m.).    

An Ombudsman has been appointed.    

See NASA Specific Note “B”. Any referenced notes may be viewed at the following URLs linked below.

Point of Contact

Tina M. Landes, Contract Specialist, Phone (321) 867-1500, Fax (321) 867-4848, Email

Email your questions to Tina M. Landes at

SpaceRef staff editor.