Status Report

NASA Solicitation: Community Announcement on Solicitation For ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Instruments – NNH10ZDA005J

By SpaceRef Editor
December 15, 2009
Filed under , ,
NASA Solicitation: Community Announcement on Solicitation For ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Instruments – NNH10ZDA005J

Synopsis – Dec 15, 2009

General Information

Solicitation Number: NNH10ZDA005J
Posted Date: Dec 15, 2009
FedBizOpps Posted Date: Dec 15, 2009
Recovery and Reinvestment Act Action: No
FedGrants Posted Date: Dec 15, 2009
Application Due Date Explanation: N/A
Classification Code: A — Research and Development
NAICS Code: 541712 – Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences (except Biotechnology)

Grant Specific Information
Funding Instrument Type: Cooperative Agreement
Funding Instrument Type: Procurement Contract
CFDA Number: 00.000
Cost Sharing or Matching Required: No
Estimated Total Program Funding: not available
Expected Number of Awards: not available
Ceiling Amount: none
Floor Amount: none
Funding Activity: Science and Technology and other Research and Development (ST)
Eligible Applicants: 99 – Unrestricted

Link to Full Announcement:

Contracting Office Address

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA Headquarters Acquisition Branch, Code 210.H, Greenbelt, MD 20771


Subject: Community Announcement on a NASA Solicitation for ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Instruments

NNH10ZDA005J Community Announcement on a NASA Solicitation for ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Instruments December 11, 2009

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and the European Space Agency (ESA) intend to release in January 2010 an solicitation requesting proposals for instruments to be flown on the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter with the objective of studying trace gases in the atmosphere of Mars. This solicitation will be issued as an amendment to the SALMON (Stand Alone Mission of Opportunity Notice) Announcement of Opportunity (AO) (released as NNH08ZDA009O; available at ).


The solicitation will be a Focused Mission of Opportunity (FMO) element of the omnibus SALMON AO. It will invite proposals for a suite of instruments to address the following prioritized scientific goals.

1. Detect a broad suite of atmospheric trace gases and key isotopes; 2. Characterize the spatial and temporal variation of methane and other key species, ideally representing families of photochemically important trace gases (HOx, NOx, hydrocarbons, etc) and their source molecules (e.g. H2O); 3. Localize the sources and derive the evolution of methane and other key species and their possible interactions, including interactions with atmospheric aerosols and how they are affected by the atmospheric state (temperature and distribution of major source gases; e.g. water); and 4. Image surface features possibly related to trace gas sources and sinks.

Anticipating approval of the joint ESA-NASA Mars Exploration Programme by the ESA Council, this AO will be the first competed element of the ESA-NASA joint Mars Exploration Programme. The agencies anticipate conducting the selection of instruments through a highly coordinated process respecting the established processes of each agency.

Participation in this AO will be open to all categories of organizations in the United States, in ESA member states, as well as in other countries, including educational institutions, industry, not-for-profit organizations, Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDC’s), NASA Centers, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and other Government agencies.

Principal Investigators are responsible for and allowed to assemble investigation teams from any and all of these organizations.

Given that this mission is part of the joint ESA-NASA Mars Exploration Programme, instrument proposals having an international dimension are encouraged. In particular, participation is encouraged from scientists in the U.S. and in countries contributing to ESA’s Aurora Program (Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Greece, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom).

The cost cap for the entire suite of instruments requiring NASA funds and selected in response to this AO will be approximately $100 Million. The launch of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter mission is targeted for January 2016.

ESA does not fund the development and exploitation of instruments for its spacecraft. However, under ESA coordination, the national agencies and research institutions taking part in ESA’s Aurora Program and submitting proposal to this opportunity will be responsible for funding any instruments selected in response to this Announcement.


The scientific goals and a strawman mission are described in detail in the Report of the Joint Investigation Definition Team (JIDT), which is available in the SALMON Reference Library at .

The JIDT report discusses a potential set of instruments to address the mission science goals outlined above. Proposers should note that this was offered as a proof of concept, and does not represent any pre-selection by either ESA or NASA of instruments or techniques to accomplish the mission science goals. The strawman payload of individual instrument allocations are shown in the JIDT Report but should only be considered as a guideline.


Important characteristics of this AO are expected to be:

a) Although this is a joint ESA-NASA mission, NASA will provide the logistical support for submission of proposals. b) Pending the submission of an adequate number of proposals of merit, ESA and NASA expect to select a combination of instrument investigations that address the mission science objectives. c) The review process will be tightly coordinated between NASA and ESA, and to the extent possible will be conducted jointly. d) Any ESA Member State Investigator wishing to participate in the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter science must apply to the AO. e) NASA welcomes proposals having participants from non-U.S. institutions provided that they are offered on a no-exchange-of-funds basis and also comply with current U.S. restrictions concerning the export of technology. f) ESA welcomes proposals having participants from non-European institutions provided that they are offered on a no-exchange-of-funds basis. g) Data from ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter investigations must be made fully public in a usable form as soon as is practical. All data products shall be documented, validated, and calibrated in physical units usable by the scientific community at large.

The following schedule describes the anticipated major milestones of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Instruments Announcement of Opportunity. These dates are subject to change.

AO Release approximately – Mid- January, 2010 Pre proposal Conference (Telecon) – Release + 2 wks Notice of Intent to Propose due – Release + 4 weeks Proposals due – Release + 3 months Non-U.S. Letters of Endorsement – due with proposals Selections announced (target) – July 2010

Release of this AO is in the process of formally being approved by NASA and ESA. However, by sending this announcement to prospective investigators at this time (prior to release), the agencies are under no obligation to issue the AO and solicit proposals. Any costs incurred by prospective investigators in preparing submissions in response to this announcement are incurred completely at the submitter’s own risk. This AO anticipated here may contain provisions that differ from this notice, in which case those in the AO will take precedence.

Questions or comments about this community announcement on a ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter AO may be addressed to either the NASA ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Instruments Program Scientist: Dr. Philippe Crane, Science Mission Directorate (SMD), National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Washington, DC 20546-0001; E-mail:; Telephone: (202) 358-0716 or to the ESA equivalent: Dr Jorge Vago, ESA/ESTEC (SRE-SM) Noordwijk, The Netherlands ; Telephone: +31 71 565 5211 ; E-mail:

Point of Contact

Name: Dr. Philippe Crane
Title: Discipline Scientist
Phone: 202-358-0716
Fax: 202-358-3096

SpaceRef staff editor.