ST. LOUIS, June 03, 2008 -- The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] has awarded subcontracts to three small businesses under its NASA Ares I avionics contract. The avionics ring mounted between the Ares I upper stage and Orion capsule consists of onboard computers, flight controls, communications equipment, power systems, navigation and control systems and other instruments and their associated software for monitoring the rocket's speed and position while supporting safe assembly, check-out and flight operation. The avionics is the brains of the Ares I rocket, which will transport astronauts into orbit for their journey back to the moon by 2020.
Boeing awarded subcontracts to minority-owned GeoLogics Corp., based in Alexandria, Va.; to minority-owned Moseley Technical Services Inc., based in Huntsville, Ala., and to service-disabled veteran-owned Muniz Engineering Inc. (MEI) Technologies, based in Houston. All three companies are classified as small disadvantaged businesses under government contracting guidelines. The value of the subcontracts was not disclosed.
Moseley Technical Services will support avionics subsystem development and systems engineering and integration; GeoLogics will provide software support to Boeing; and MEI Technologies will support the electronic ground equipment development and test activities.
Boeing conducted a competition among 15 companies and selected the three that offered the best overall value. The company's source selection team included Engineering, Finance, Human Resources, Supplier Management and the Boeing Small Business Office. The contracts are for one year with four one-year options that could last through 2013.
"We based our evaluations on their technical ability, management capability and cost," said Larry B. McWhorter, Boeing Ares I Instrument Unit Avionics (IUA) Engineering manager, who was involved in the selection process. "Clearly, the proposals were top-notch, and we're excited to have them work with us to deliver a safe and reliable avionics system for NASA's next-generation Ares I rocket. This is the first of many opportunities for engineering support services as we strive to exceed our aggressive small-business goals."
All three companies will hire new employees who will be colocated with Boeing and NASA personnel in Huntsville. Millennium Engineering and Integration Company has already been working with Boeing on its avionics contract; the new contracts bring a total of four small businesses that have partnered with NASA and Boeing on its avionics program.
Boeing plans to award more than 12 percent of its avionics work to small businesses, with additional contracts in 2008 and 2009 as program requirements mature. Small businesses that are interested in Boeing's Ares I work should contact Larry L. Smith at email@example.com or (256) 461-5885.