Synopsis - Aug 24, 2010
RFI Appendix - Posted on Aug 24, 2010
Solicitation Number: NNH10UA005L-1
Posted Date: Aug 24, 2010
FedBizOpps Posted Date: Aug 24, 2010
Recovery and Reinvestment Act Action: No
Original Response Date: Sep 12, 2010
Current Response Date: Sep 12, 2010
Classification Code: A -- Research and Development
NAICS Code: 541712 - Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences (except Biotechnology)
Contracting Office Address
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA Headquarters Acquisition Branch, Code 210.H, Greenbelt, MD 20771
In Fiscal Year 2011, NASA plans to begin the Space Technology Research Grants Program. As part of the Office of the Chief Technologist's Early Stage Innovation Division, this Program will foster the development of innovative low Technology Readiness Level (TRL) technologies for advanced space systems and space technology. The goal of this low TRL technology endeavor will be to accelerate the development of push technologies (technology development not directed at a specific mission) to support the future space science and exploration needs of NASA, other government agencies, and the commercial space sector.
To support Program formulation, the NASA Office of the Chief Technologist (OCT) is seeking input on the Space Technology Research Grants strategy described in this document and suggestions for space technologies that NASA should consider.
Efforts are expected to be short term - typically one year in duration - and will increase the TRL of technologies that might be applied to multiple, current missions or to allow NASA to pursue entirely new missions. These Early Stage Innovation Division efforts will complement the NASA Mission Directorates' focused technology activities that directly support their planned missions. While the Mission Directorate efforts typically begin at TRL 3 or higher, the TRL of the efforts to be considered in this Program will be
- TRL 1 (basic principles observed and reported),
- TRL 2 (technology concept and/or application formulated) or
- early TRL 3 (analytical and experimental critical function and/or characteristic proof of concept)
at the beginning of the selected effort. The full TRL scale and all associated definitions are provided in the Appendix to this RFI.
Through this sustained, deliberate investment in a low TRL portfolio, NASA is seeking
- Maturation of revolutionary technologies that will greatly advance NASA's missions
- Ideas that may result in beneficial changes to NASA's long-range plans
- Cross-cutting technologies that contribute new technological approaches for aerospace applications and, ideally, also fulfill national needs in areas such as communications, power, energy storage, propulsion, safety, and security
Space technology being sought in this Program deals with the design, modeling, operation, maintenance, repair, testing, and reliability of any of the components and systems of both manned and robotic spacecraft. Several external and NASA-sponsored studies in the past decade have identified key technology advances that would benefit potential future missions:
This list of references may be considered a starting point for the topics to be considered and is not intended to be comprehensive.
The Space Technology Research Grants Program will seek technologies that, if successful, would lead to a dramatic improvement at the system level (performance, weight, cost, reliability, operational simplicity or other figures of merit associated with space flight hardware and missions). Although progress under any single award may be incremental, the projected impact at the system level must be substantial and clearly defined.
Typical Planned Awards
It is expected that the typical award amount will be $250K and that the typical award duration will be one year. Efforts between one and two years in duration will also be considered. Funding for all or part of a second year would be contingent upon review of Year 1 progress and availability of funds.
Awards greater than $400K/year are not expected.
It is NASA's intent to share all knowledge developed under this Program and public dissemination of results will be expected.
Awards in the form of grants, cooperative agreements, contracts or intra-agency transfers are expected, depending on the nature of the submitting organization and the nature of the effort. It is expected that most awards will be grants and intra-agency transfers.
Planned Eligibility Requirements
The Program plans to fund efforts that are led by investigators from accredited United States Universities, not-for-profit R&D Laboratories and NASA Centers. Principal investigators do not need to have extensive space technology experience. Partnerships will be encouraged and investigators will be permitted to team with any U.S. or non-U.S. organization, institution, or public or private company. Teaming with non-U.S. organizations is subject to NASA policy of no exchange of funds.
Planned Limit on Number of Proposals and Proposal Details
In order to facilitate broad, nationwide participation in this Program, NASA is planning to limit a proposal participant - Principal Investigator, Co-Investigator or otherwise - to participation in no more than two proposals.
The science/technical/management section will be limited to 8 pages in length.
Planned Evaluation Criteria
The following criteria (listed in descending order of importance) are planned: