Prior Information Notice

General Information

United States
   Aug 18, 2010
   Feb 19, 2010
   National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Contact information

   United States

Goods, Works and Services

Museum services   Preservation services of historical sites and buildings  

Original Text

Introduction:This is a Request for Information (RFI) only and does not constitute a commitment,implied or otherwise, that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) willtake procurement action in this matter. Further, neither NASA nor the Government will beresponsible for any cost incurred in furnishing this information.This RFI is a follow-up to RFI Reference # NNH09OI001L; Space Shuttle Orbiter and SpaceShuttle Main Engine Placement, dated December 17, 2008. NASA recognizes the interest by educational institutions, science museums, and otherappropriate organizations in the acquisition of NASA Shuttle-related property followingthe last flight of the Space Shuttle. While NASAs priority is flying the remainingShuttle missions safely, because of the quantity, complexity, and dispersion of the SpaceShuttle Program (SSP) assets, successful Space Shuttle transition and retirement requirescareful planning prior to program completion, currently scheduled for September 2010. This RFI is being used to gather additional research for NASA to make decisions regardingplacement of Space Shuttle Orbiters and public display after conclusion of the SSP. Inlight of proposed cost and schedule changes associated with the acquisition and displayof the Orbiters, NASA is seeking updated information from educational institutions,science museums, and other appropriate organizations about the communitys ability toacquire and display a Space Shuttle Orbiter after the vehicles are retired from flightstatus.Changes to Orbiter Transfer Cost and Schedule addressed in this RFI:1. A recipient will be required to take delivery of an Orbiter between July andDecember 2011, six months earlier than the May 2012 date included in the December, 2008RFI. The first Orbiter is scheduled to be delivered in July 2011, with the otherOrbiter(s) to follow later.2. A suitable climate-controlled indoor facility must be available to house theOrbiter when delivered. 3. The cost to complete display preparation for each Orbiter and ferry the Orbiterto its ultimate display location is updated to $28.8 million. This cost is to be providedto NASA. The $28.8M cost includes the cost to ferry each Orbiter to its ultimatedestination. A recipient will be required to demonstrate to NASA that the recipientpossesses the full display preparation and ferrying cost no later than April, 2011. NASAwill no longer require that recipients fund safing of the Orbiters. The December, 2008RFI anticipated that the recipient of the Orbiter would be responsible for funding safingcosts.4. NASA may also have the opportunity to place an unflown Orbiter for display inaddition to the two retired Orbiters discussed in the Original RFI.5. This RFI does not address Space Shuttle Main Engines (SSMEs). NASA does not planto include three installed SSMEs with each Orbiter.NASA is interested in identifying whether potential recipient organizations are capableof bearing the full cost of Space Shuttle Orbiter final display preparation andtransportation/ferry flight. NASA will bear the cost of Orbiter safing which includesdecontamination of hypergolic fuel systems and removal of other safety and environmentalhazards from the vehicles. Organizations interested in receiving a Space Shuttle Orbiterfor public display must be prepared to raise all funding for Space Shuttle Orbiter finaldisplay preparation, and transportation/ferry services. Organizations that ultimatelyreceive an Orbiter will be responsible for all display preparation andtransportation/ferry flight costs.NASA will use the results of this RFI to determine interest that may lead to selection ofspecific organizations to receive a Space Shuttle Orbiter. The Orbiters may be directlytransferred or donated to eligible recipient organizations, if any. Background:NASA will cease SSP operations at all locations following completion of the last flight,currently scheduled to occur in September, 2010. The Government may elect to change thescheduled date for last flight: that would change the scheduled date an Orbiter isavailable for transfer to a recipient. SSP retirement necessitates the disposition of allSSP assets and items no longer required by NASA, including the Space Shuttle Orbiters. The NASA Authorization Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-422) directs NASA to submit to Congress aplan describing the process for the disposition of the remaining Orbiters and other SpaceShuttle program-related hardware after the retirement of the Space Shuttle fleet. NASAadvised the Congress and has had subsequent discussions with the Smithsonian Institution,National Air and Space Museum regarding accession of a flown Space Shuttle Orbiter to thenational collection. The National Air and Space Museum houses the national collection ofaerospace artifacts. NASA also advised the Congress that the Agency would issue an RFI togauge the level and scope of interest of U.S. organizations in acquiring the two (2)other Orbiters and other major flight hardware (such as the SSMEs) for public displayonce NASAs programmatic requirements for the assets have been satisfied.SSP Hardware Addressed in this RFI:Space Shuttle OrbitersNASAs Space Shuttle Orbiters (Figure 1) are the first reusable spacecraft capable ofroutinely launching into orbit like rockets and then returning to Earth as gliders. Theseunique crew and heavy cargo-carrying vehicles are the main element of the National SpaceTransportation System that has been the mainstay of the U.S. human spaceflight programfor more than a quarter-century. The Space Shuttle Orbiters have and continue to performa wide variety of scientific research and space operations missions, including the finalassembly of the International Space Station.Due to the significance of the Space Shuttle Orbiters and the role they have played inthe Nations space program, special attention will be paid to ensuring they will retireto appropriate places. NASA is keenly aware of the essential value of these key assets tothe space programs rich history; the Agency is therefore committed to making placementdecisions that are determined to be in the best interest of the American taxpayer.Under NASAs current plan, the Orbiter Discovery is to transfer to the National Air andSpace Museum. Endeavour or Atlantis will be available for placement no earlier than July,2011. The other Orbiter will be available before the end of December, 2011, and NASAintends that ferry flights will be completed no later than December, 2011.NASA estimates the total cost to be incurred by a recipient organization for Orbiterdisplay preparation, and delivery by ferry flight to a U.S. destination airport atapproximately $28.8 million. This includes the cost to air ferry the Orbiter by ShuttleCarrier Aircraft from the Kennedy Space Center to a U. S. destination airport. Thisestimate is based on updated estimates by NASA about the minimum tasks which must beperformed for public display of each Space Shuttle Orbiter. It does not take into accountspecial measures that may be required in specific situations such as transporting theOrbiter long distances over public roadways which may require removal of light posts andtraffic signals or transport by barge over water. Additional preparation tasks such asfabrication of engine bay covers or mock nozzles, open payload bay door displayconfiguration, and lighting on the vehicle would also increase costs to recipients. TheOrbiters will not be disassembled for transportation or storage. Special Considerations:It should be noted that the organizations that ultimately receive a Space Shuttle Orbitermust abide by the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) restrictions placed onthe items. The Orbiters fall under the purview of the U.S. Munitions List (USML), asdefined in the ITAR (22 CFR120-130) and are export controlled. The Space Shuttle Orbitersshall not be transferred to foreign persons (ITAR 120.16), in the U.S. or abroad, orexported out of the U.S., without notification to NASA and the specific approval/exportlicense from the Department of State Directorate for Defense Trade Controls( ). Violations of these regulations are punishableby fine, imprisonment, or both.Air ferry of Orbiters by Shuttle Carrier Aircraft would require U. S. destinationairports to have 8,000 to 10,000 feet runways depending on the altitude and atmospherictemperature of the landing site, and the final weight of the Orbiters being delivered.The Space Shuttle Orbiters may not be displayed or stored outdoors. Responders should beaware that the Orbiters will require suitable climate-controlled indoor display orstorage space.Respondents should take into consideration that the Orbiters may contain hazardousmaterials and require proper handling. Although NASA will take necessary precautions todecontaminate the hardware and remove or render safe known safety and environmentalhazards, it may not be possible to completely remove all residual hazards from thehardware. NASA will clearly identify any unusual hazards that are not removed, prior totransferring the Orbiters to final recipient organizations.There is a limited quantity of support items and tools that may be necessary totransport, assemble, and display the Space Shuttle Orbiters. Loan of support items andtools would be negotiated and coordinated with the recipient organizations, contingent onNASA program requirements.Responding to this RFI:Organizations responding to this RFI must be: 1) a U.S. museum, institution, ororganization dedicated to education or educational outreach, including NASA VisitorCenters; 2) a U.S. Federal agency, State, Commonwealth, or U.S. possession or anymunicipal corporation or political subdivision thereof; or 3) the District of Columbia.Note: At a minimum, if you previously responded to NASAs 2008 RFI Reference #NNH09OI001L, Space Shuttle Orbiter and Space Shuttle Main Engine Placement, pleaseacknowledge your intent and ability to satisfy items 1-4 addressed in the sectionentitled Changes to Orbiter Transfer Cost and Schedule addressed in this RFI. If youwish to provide updated or new information in response to this RFI, NASA requests thatyou provide only the updated or new information with appropriate references, ifnecessary, to your response to the December, 2008 RFI.RFI responses must include:Name of the primary point of contact for the responseAcademic faculty or business titleInstitution or organization affiliationEmail addressPhoneIdentification of other key individuals who collaborated on the RFI responseA brief summary (300 word limit) description of previous relevant experience indisplaying assets of National significance.RFI Questions:NASA is requesting responses to the following questions:1. Would your organization be interested in acquiring an Orbiter? For what purpose and atwhat location?2. Please explain your organizations approach to raising funding necessary for Orbiterfinal display preparation, and ferry/transportation services.a. What are your proposed source(s) of funding?b. What is your ability to raise sufficient funds in time to meet the April 4, 2011target for funds to be transferred to support display preparation of an Orbiter?3. The Space Shuttle Orbiters may not be displayed or stored outdoors, and will requiresuitable climate-controlled indoor display space. Please provide your organizationscapabilities to appropriately house, protect, display, and curate a Space ShuttleOrbiter.4. Given the updated schedule, financial and curatorial requirements stated in this RFI,what is the earliest date your organization could accept the transfer of an Orbiter?5. What is the benefit to the Nation of displaying a Space Shuttle Orbiter at yourfacility? In your response, please identify:a. How you would use these assets to inspire the American public and students inparticular;b. Other specific educational or education outreach opportunities; andc. How you would you assess, evaluate, and measure these objectives.6. Provide the techniques and interpretive strategies that you would use to enhance thedisplay of these artifacts and increase the publics ability to understand the Nationsspace exploration agenda.7. What additional assets, tools, or expertise would your organization request from NASAin order to display these assets to the American public?Topics which organizations should also include the following in an Appendix in as muchdetail as reasonably possible:Mission StatementOrganizational ChartNature of Governing AuthorityAccreditation or other relevant credentialCollection Ownership and Management PolicyAttendance Figures for each of the past 5 yearsPopulation of geographic area in which organization is locatedLocal infrastructure for transporting a Space Shuttle Orbiter, once offloaded from theShuttle Carrier Aircraft, to the final display locationBudget and Resources profile including endowments over the past 5 yearsNumber of Web Page Hits for each of the past 5 yearsPlease note that RFI responses including the Appendix must not exceed 25 pages in length.Use single-spaced, 12-point, Times New Roman font.The following file naming convention should be used:SSP_RFI_firstinitial_lastname2010.docFor example: Angela Rodriguez would name her file SSP_RFI_A_Rodriguez2010.docAuthorized file formats include: Adobe Acrobat versions 6 - 8 (.pdf) Microsoft Word(.doc) and Microsoft Excel (.xls)Although all comments received will be carefully reviewed and considered for inclusion inany possible later action, the initiators of this request make no commitment to includeany particular recommendations. Respondents will not be notified of the results of thereview.No solicitation exists; therefore, do not request a copy of the solicitation. Response Submission Deadline:Responses to this RFI must be submitted no later than 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time, onFebruary 19, 2010. RFI submissions will be accepted as email attachments only. Allresponses must be sent to, with SSP RFI Response in thesubject line.An email confirmation of receipt from NASA will be sent within a one-week period to thedesignated point of contact.Point of Contact for Inquiries and Submissions:Inquiries/questions regarding this proposal may be directed to NASA Headquarters, Officeof Infrastructure, Mail Stop 4G74, 300 E Street SW, Washington D.C., 20546, fax 202-358-2826, telephone 202-358-0746 (Bob Sherouse), or electronic mail with SSP RFI Inquiry in the subject line. Inquiries/questionsmust be received by 1 February. NASA responses to inquiries/questions received by thisdeadline will be available by 9 February and publicly posted at will not publicly disclose proprietary information obtained as a result of this RFI.To the full extent that it is protected by law and regulations, information identified bya respondent as Proprietary or Confidential will be kept confidential. This RFI may alsobe found electronically at Set-aside code: N/A Contact: Bob Sherouse, Infrastructure Transition Manager, Phone 202-358-0746, Fax 202-358-2826, Email
Link To Document Email: Bob Sherouse (
Updated on 2010/01/15
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