Status Report

NASA Presolicitation Notice: UM Analysis and Close Out Activities for ED Tether Flight and Flight Hardware

By SpaceRef Editor
March 31, 2004
Filed under ,

General Information

  • Document Type: Presolicitation Notice
  • Solicitation Number: 4200058142
  • Posted Date: Mar 29, 2004
  • Original Response Date: Apr 13, 2004
  • Current Response Date: Apr 13, 2004
  • Original Archive Date: Mar 29, 2005
  • Current Archive Date: Mar 29, 2005
  • Classification Code: A — Research & Development
  • Naics Code: 541710 — Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences

Contracting Office Address

NASA/George C. Marshall Space Flight Center, Procurement Office, Marshall Space Flight Center, AL 35812


NASA/MSFC has a requirement for UM Analysis and Close Out activities for ED Tether Flight and Flight Hardware. NASA/MSFC intends to purchase the services from The University of Michigan on a sole source basis.    

The Space Physics Research Laboratory (SPRL)(a division of the University of Michigan)is presently working the return of flight hardware and ground support equipment for previous electrodynamic tether experiments.    

This includes a tether endmass spacecraft, plasma diagnostics package with probes, and high-voltage tether current control and monitor.SPRL will complete analyses pertaining to the final version of this hardware and its suitability for flight.    

SPRL will also complete technical performance analyses of bare electrodynamic tethers in high-speed plasma flow and assessing the impact of real-world ionospheric plasma variations on an operational bare tether structure. Bare ED tether technology is new and has not yet flown in space. Michigan has experience in assessing bare-tether operations based on computer simulations and ground tests. The technical expertise in bare wire anode collection research for spacebased tether even among universities is rare, but resides at the University of Michigan since their program has supported ProSEDS for several years. Lessons learned in these particular areas from the ProSEDS project are directly related to University of Michigan only. The Government intends to acquire a commercial service using FAR Part 12. Interested organizations may submit their capabilities and qualifications to perform the effort in writing to    

Janet Appleton via fax at 256-544-6062 no later than 4:30 p.m. local time on April 13, 2004. 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. An Ombudsman has been appointed.    

See NASA Specific Note “B”.    

Original Point of Contact

Betty C. Kilpatrick, Contract Specialist, Phone (256) 544-0310, Fax (256) 544-6062, Email – Cynthia B. Hollingsworth, Contracting Officer, Phone (256) 544-1656, Fax (256) 544-6062, Email

Email your questions to Betty C. Kilpatrick at

SpaceRef staff editor.