WASHINGTON, 7 Jan. 2009. This week NASA officials issued a request for proposal for the Ares V rocket that will perform heavy lift and cargo functions as part of the next generation of spacecraft that will return humans to the moon. The request is for Phase I concept definition and requirements development for the Ares V rocket. Proposals are due to NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., no later than 1 p.m. CDT on Feb. 9.
The request for proposal defines the procurement approach for Phase I of the Ares V acquisition. The contract work will include developing products to enable NASA to successfully complete the system requirements review and system definition review – critical milestones in the development of the rocket. Completion of the system definition review will verify the design concept and demonstrate mission objectives can be met.
The solicitation includes five separate work packages available for bid. Work packages one through four include the payload shroud that will protect the Altair lunar lander during launch, the Earth Departure Stage, the core stage, and avionics and software. The products for these work packages include assessing point of departure architecture, assessing risks and opportunities, trade studies and analysis, assessment of NASA requirements, and a final report. The fifth work package includes a first stage concept for an upgraded solid rocket fueled booster.
Marshall will manage the contracts, which will be awarded through a full and open competition. The selections will be made in the spring of 2009. The period of performance for each contract is 18 months with two, one-year options.
For more information about the request for proposal, visit: http://prod.nais.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/eps/sol.cgi?acqid=131145#Draft%20Document.