Author Topic: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement  (Read 32981 times)

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #40 on: 03/15/2023 07:08 pm »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1636095723425988608

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Bruno: NSSL Lane 2, for demanding national security missions, "is for grownups." Government will need to do block buys or else funding they have trouble getting on manifests.

Offline RedLineTrain

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #41 on: 03/15/2023 07:31 pm »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1636095723425988608

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Bruno: NSSL Lane 2, for demanding national security missions, "is for grownups." Government will need to do block buys or else funding they have trouble getting on manifests.

This is so self-serving it's disgusting.  I am sure that SpaceX is more than willing to accommodate them on their manifest.

Online mn

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #42 on: 03/15/2023 07:52 pm »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1636095723425988608

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Bruno: NSSL Lane 2, for demanding national security missions, "is for grownups." Government will need to do block buys or else funding they have trouble getting on manifests.

This is so self-serving it's disgusting.  I am sure that SpaceX is more than willing to accommodate them on their manifest.

Oh don't worry ULA (or whatever it is by then) will also accommodate them block buy or not.

But he still wants a block buy, can't blame him.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #43 on: 04/14/2023 03:02 pm »
twitter.com/free_space/status/1646883653413224449

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Space Force plans to award sole-source study contract to on-ramp Blue Origin for National Security Space Launch Phase 3 contract -- Lane 2 (which, if for New Glenn, certainly indicates Lane 2 not just for small satellite launchers ). SLS next?   

https://sam.gov/opp/bc16bbbd24074a7b9d715b341a0aa567/view

https://twitter.com/free_space/status/1646889447839916033

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Oops -- got my lanes mixed up . lane 2 for full-range of NSSL missions , not small sat launchers .

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #44 on: 04/21/2023 03:58 am »
https://twitter.com/wehavemeco/status/1649152079150354433

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Something else that came up during the live shows yesterday: @Peter_J_Beck of @RocketLab pointed out that vehicles bidding for NSSL Phase 3 Lane 1 need to be able to lift 10 tons to LEO at a minimum:

https://www.youtube.com/live/wmmNuU8-Tr8

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I hadn’t gone back to check, but the NSSL Phase 3 Industry Day Briefing is up on SAM.gov now, where that info is disclosed: https://sam.gov/opp/e5d778c9278a47c9a759927901e35bf6/view

https://twitter.com/wehavemeco/status/1649153131790635008

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Quite an interesting limit. It excludes vehicles like @Firefly_Space’s Alpha, @ablspacesystems’ RS1, @RocketLab’s Electron, whatever @Astra ends up working on, etc. Relying on basically an entire new generation of vehicles—Neutron, Terran R, Firefly MLV—is a bit…interesting.

Online abaddon

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #45 on: 05/08/2023 02:06 pm »
“Relying on an entire new generation of vehicles…”?  Last I recall lane one is open to all bidders including SpaceX, which seems likely to clean up in this category.

Offline DeimosDream

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #46 on: 05/08/2023 07:22 pm »
Interesting.

One observation: the Lane-1 requirement is 10 short tons, or approximately 9 metric tons. That threshold might be just low enough to let Antares 330 bid.

It looks like smaller rockets (400lb/180kg+ LEO) are covered by OSP-4 (Orbital Services Program). https://sam.gov/opp/324d7a776a8f8ce29d9369ab8684a5be/view


Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #47 on: 07/14/2023 05:45 pm »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1679902235998793749

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From a Space Force release about a new draft RFP for National Security Space Launch Phase 3: "The most substantive change since the U.S. Space Force released the first draft Request for Proposals is that the U.S. Space Force will add a third provider to the Lane 2 construct." 🤔

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #48 on: 07/14/2023 05:47 pm »
https://spacenews.com/senate-defense-panel-leaves-national-security-space-launch-unsecured/

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Opinion
Senate defense panel leaves National Security Space Launch unsecured
Erik Seedhouse
July 13, 2023

Erik Seedhouse, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Spaceflight Operations at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

In the misguided effort to promote increased competition, the U.S. Senate Armed Service Committee has proposed changes to how the U.S. Space Force selects providers of national security launch services. Their attempted legislative override of the U.S. Space Force’s proposed contractor standards is reckless, and U.S. space leaders fear that it may compromise the success of the National Security Space Launch (NSSL) — the government program intended to assure access to space for the U.S. Department of Defense.

Offline deltaV

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #49 on: 07/14/2023 06:35 pm »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1679902235998793749

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From a Space Force release about a new draft RFP for National Security Space Launch Phase 3: "The most substantive change since the U.S. Space Force released the first draft Request for Proposals is that the U.S. Space Force will add a third provider to the Lane 2 construct." 🤔

I hope the Space Force waits until the bids are submitted before making a final decision about whether they'll accept 0, 1, 2 or 3 bids. Retaining this sort of flexibility got NASA a better deal with HLS then they would have gotten if they'd accepted 2 bids during the first competition.

Offline Jim

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #50 on: 07/14/2023 06:37 pm »

I hope the Space Force waits until the bids are submitted before making a final decision about whether they'll accept 0, 1, 2 or 3 bids. Retaining this sort of flexibility got NASA a better deal with HLS then they would have gotten if they'd accepted 2 bids during the first competition.

No, they have to make their intentions known at the beginning of the procurement.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #51 on: 07/14/2023 08:41 pm »
https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1679952920396066818

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Space Force is expanding "Lane 2" of the NSSL Phase 3 to three rocket companies, from two – specifically calling out "the pacing challenge" of China as part of the need for more launches and providers.

SSC press release (highlights mine):
« Last Edit: 07/14/2023 08:41 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #52 on: 07/18/2023 06:12 am »
https://twitter.com/ussf_ssc/status/1681097641889857536

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#SpaceSystemsCommand released a 2nd round of National Security Space Launch Phase 3 draft Requests for Proposals that incorporate industry comments from the first draft RFPs. SSC is seeking additional industry feedback.

Learn more and submit feedback:

https://www.ssc.spaceforce.mil/Portals/3/Documents/PRESS%20RELEASES/Space%20Systems%20Command%20Releases%20National%20Security%20Space%20Launch%20Phase%203%20Draft%202%20Request%20for%20Proposals.pdf

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #53 on: 07/18/2023 09:01 am »
Neutron maybe contender if 3rd awardee doesn't have to meet maximum payload requirements for each mission. DoD has help fund Neutron's US development, this maybe to meet all NSSL Phase 3 complex mission requirements eg direct GEO insertion.

Neutron should mean low launch costs for lighter payloads compared to F9 and Vulcan.

Neutron can't compete with New Glenn for performance but RL has launch record that Blue is long way from matching.
« Last Edit: 07/28/2023 05:06 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline DeimosDream

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #54 on: 07/18/2023 02:21 pm »
It looks like they quietly lowered the Lane-1 requirements. The new standard calls for 6.8 tons to 926km (15,000 lbm to 500 nmi), but now allows that to be split over multiple launches, 1ton minimum per launch.

Lane 2 requirements are fuzzier.
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The Government will award three contracts for the NSSL Phase 3 Lane 2 Launch Service
70 Procurement for “Requirement 1”, “Requirement 2”, and “Requirement 3.” The “Requirement
71 1” or “Requirement 2” launch service distributions will be as described in Table 1 in 52.212-4
72 (z) Ordering, in the model contract. The “Requirement 3” launch service distribution portion of
73 the NSSL manifest is described in Table 2 in 52.212-4 (z) Ordering, in the model contract.
That does sort of sounds like the 3rd place may have different requirements than the others. Probably still created just for New Glenn, but Neutron might have a chance.

https://sam.gov/opp/bd1fa759be3c4b8285575337fa166d0b/view#attachments-links



Offline deltaV

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #55 on: 07/19/2023 12:00 am »
Has anyone found the important parts of those lengthy multi-part draft RFPs? For example for lane 2 how many launches, what mass, and what orbits for the three winners?

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #56 on: 07/19/2023 12:44 am »
Has anyone found the important parts of those lengthy multi-part draft RFPs? For example for lane 2 how many launches, what mass, and what orbits for the three winners?
There was zip file download with half dozen documents but none containing orbits or mass requirements.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #57 on: 07/21/2023 11:05 am »
Has anyone found the important parts of those lengthy multi-part draft RFPs? For example for lane 2 how many launches, what mass, and what orbits for the three winners?

Anthony Colangelo has done some analysis:

https://mainenginecutoff.com/podcast/255

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After the most recent show, I found a few nuggets of information in the NSSL Phase 3 documents, plus some more updates came out in a call that the Space Force had with some reporters.

What Anthony found:

58 launches total for the 3 winners, but only 7 to the 3rd winner (5 GPS satellites and 2 direct to GSO).

The remaining 51 are split 60/40 between the other 2 winners. So very heavily biased to main 2 winners, presumably to ensure a minimum number of launches per annum (the speculation being to guarantee that ULA remains in business whatever else happens in the launch market).

Also although a winner does not need a current launch vehicle, they must have (successfully?) launched by 1st October 2026. Furthermore, they need an operational West Coast launch site by that date too.

So, as currently written, not as beneficial to Blue Origin as some headlines might suggest.

Offline AstroWare

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #58 on: 07/21/2023 02:43 pm »


Has anyone found the important parts of those lengthy multi-part draft RFPs? For example for lane 2 how many launches, what mass, and what orbits for the three winners?

Anthony Colangelo has done some analysis:

https://mainenginecutoff.com/podcast/255

Quote
After the most recent show, I found a few nuggets of information in the NSSL Phase 3 documents, plus some more updates came out in a call that the Space Force had with some reporters.

What Anthony found:

58 launches total for the 3 winners, but only 7 to the 3rd winner (5 GPS satellites and 2 direct to GSO).

The remaining 51 are split 60/40 between the other 2 winners. So very heavily biased to main 2 winners, presumably to ensure a minimum number of launches per annum (the speculation being to guarantee that ULA remains in business whatever else happens in the launch market).

Also although a winner does not need a current launch vehicle, they must have (successfully?) launched by 1st October 2026. Furthermore, they need an operational West Coast launch site by that date too.

So, as currently written, not as beneficial to Blue Origin as some headlines might suggest.

If they specified GPS and GSO orbits for winner 3, why would they require a west coast launch site?

Online gongora

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Re: USSF NSSL Phase 3 Launch Service Procurement
« Reply #59 on: 07/21/2023 03:08 pm »
You don't bid to be 3rd place.  Everyone bidding for Lane 2 is expected to have a plan to meet all of the requirements.  Of course that was the case in Phase 2 also, and SpaceX had to plan for vertical integration but hasn't needed to build out the infrastructure yet.

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