NASA has begun seeking proposals from industry sources with the capability to design and develop a spacecraft that could support the agency’s safe deorbit operations for the International Space Station.
The U.S. Deorbit Vehicle procurement effort will focus on the final deorbit of the ISS and could lead to the development of a new spacecraft design or a modification to an existing vehicle, the space agency said in a blog post published Wednesday.
The spacecraft should have anomaly recovery capability and sufficient redundancy to continue to support the deorbit burn of the orbiting laboratory, which is set to retire by the 2030s.
NASA expects the USDV to perform ISS translational maneuvers, attitude control, final ISS orbit shaping and reentry burns, according to a request for proposals.
The contractor should integrate the USDV with the launch vehicle, provide sustaining engineering support, perform special tasks and studies and provide personnel, management support, facilities, materials and equipment to deliver the products and services outlined in the statement of work.
The agency will conduct the USDV acquisition program as a full and open competition with plans to award a cost-plus-incentive-fee or a firm-fixed-price contract for the design, development, test and evaluation phase. The production, assembly, integration and testing work and other succeeding phases will be awarded as FFP task orders.
The single-award contract will have potential ordering periods of 11 years and five months.
NASA will hold a virtual pre-proposal conference on Oct. 3 and accept past performance documents through Oct. 16.
Proposals are due Nov. 17.