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Commercial Resupply Services

On 23 December 2008 NASA awarded two contracts -- one to Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., and one to Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, Calif. -- for commercial cargo resupply services to the International Space Station. At the time of award, NASA ordered eight flights valued at about $1.9 billion from Orbital and 12 flights valued at about $1.6 billion from SpaceX. These fixed-price indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contracts will begin Jan. 1, 2009, and are effective through Dec. 31, 2016. The contracts each call for the delivery of a minimum of 20 metric tons of upmass cargo to the space station. The contracts also call for delivery of non-standard services in support of the cargo resupply, including analysis and special tasks as the government determines are necessary. NASA set production milestones and reviews on the contracts to monitor progress toward providing services. The maximum potential value of each contract is about $3.1 billion. Based on known requirements, the value of both contracts combined is projected at $3.5 billion. These agreements will fulfill NASA's need to procure cargo delivery services to the space station using a U.S. commercial carrier after the retirement of the space shuttle.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (JSC), released the Final RFP, number NNJ08ZBG001R, for the ISS Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) acquisition on April 14, 2008. This effort covers a contract period of 7 years. The total period of performance for this effort is January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2015. NASA may elect to award multiple contracts. The guaranteed minimum value of this contract is the negotiated value of 20,000 kg (20 MT) of upmass to the International Space Station (ISS). The total maximum value of each contract awarded is $3.1 billion.

Cargo includes both pressurized and unpressurized payloads. Contracts may include missions for pressurized or unpressurized delivery, disposal, return, or any combination thereof. NASA will provide internal cargo to the Contractor including packing materials (bags, foam, flight support equipment). Cargo combined with packing materials and/or flight support equipment is referred to as "customer cargo". NASA will provide external cargo to the Contractor without flight support equipment, referred to as "usable cargo." The Contractor shall perform all tasks necessary to ensure safe and reliable cargo integration and transportation to and from the ISS.

The Standard Resupply Mission may consist of pressurized upmass delivery, unpressurized upmass delivery, cargo disposal or cargo return. The Contractor shall provide the necessary services, test hardware and software, and mission specific elements required to integrate the cargo to the orbital and launch vehicle systems. The Contractor shall perform the required tasks to accomplish the resupply missions to and from the ISS. The Contractor shall provide the required cargo de-integration and return services, where applicable, to deliver cargo back to NASA.

The Contractor shall provide all program management functions required to provide the ISS resupply services and to satisfy the mission requirements for each NASA mission. The program management function of this contract shall provide insight to NASA for technical and programmatic activities performed under this contract. The Contractor shall submit a Mission Integration and Operations Management Plan (MIOMP) prior to contract award.

As part of the standard resupply service, the Contractor shall provide the data, documentation, drawings, analytical models, and support services as necessary to accommodate the requirements for NASA Insight and Approval. The Contractor shall provide this information for launch and orbital vehicle systems, subsystems, materials, processes, and test equipment including, upon request, those used on non-NASA missions. The Contractor shall grant NASA insight into Launch Vehicle (LV) processing and integrated Payload/OV/LV processing. Prior to the first CRS mission, at or before its Vehicle Baseline Review, the Contractor shall provide to NASA key vehicle design data. Concurrently, in accordance with DRD C7-2, the Contractor shall provide to NASA one set of flight data and reports from the mission that fully demonstrated compliance with SSP 50808.

NASA may elect to have representation as a resident office at the Contractor's major manufacturing and engineering facilities for the life of the contract. The Contractor shall provide accommodations and services, such as badging, furniture, telephones, and use of easily accessible fax, viewgraph, and copy machines for up to two residents. Two voice and two data lines shall be provided. Electronic data transfer compatibility between the resident office and off-site NASA institutions is required.

Three companies will be offering the options they laid out for the COTS competition: For Orbital, that would be the Taurus 2 rocket and the Cygnus spacecraft; for PlanetSpace's group, that would be ATV's Athena-style rocket and Lockheed Martin's Orbital Transfer Vehicle; and for SpaceX, it's the Falcon 9 rocket and the Dragon capsule.

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Page last modified: 21-07-2011 00:46:04 ZULU