Author Topic: Draft and Final RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services  (Read 95017 times)

Offline yg1968

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Quote from: NASA
In the latest step in sending astronauts to the lunar surface within five years, NASA issued a draft solicitation June 14 to industry seeking comments for a future opportunity for American companies to deliver cargo and other supplies to the Gateway in lunar orbit.

The first logistics service to the orbital outpost is expected to deliver science, cargo and other supplies in support of the agencys new Artemis lunar exploration program, which includes sending the first woman and the next man to the surface of the Moon by 2024.

Last fall, NASA asked American companies for ideas on how to best supply the Gateway, which will be located in an orbit around the Moon about 250,000 miles from Earth. The Gateway will be a command and service module for missions to the lunar surface and eventually, exploration farther into the solar system. Following up on that initial request for information, today NASA published a draft solicitation for industry comments on its logistics approach, which are due July 10, 2019.

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-to-partner-with-american-industry-to-supply-artemis-moon-missions

Draft RFP:
https://www.fbo.gov/utils/view?id=259a912b78565535cead6cd13953c36d

See also this link:
https://www.fbo.gov/spg/NASA/KSC/OPDC20220/80KSC019R0002-DRAFT/listing.html

Edit: -updated links-

Draft RFP:
https://sam.gov/opp/1db8b3856facecb73b2c4c77069ff7dd/view?keywords=80KSC019R0002&sort=-relevance&index=&is_active=true&page=1

Final RFP:
https://sam.gov/opp/ebc79e378b0ce146e91f81c121eb5668/view?keywords=80KSC019R0002&sort=-relevance&index=&is_active=true&page=1

Spending updates:
https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=50467.msg2348540#msg2348540

See this post for the more recent documents:
https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=48353.msg2018139#msg2018139
« Last Edit: 10/31/2022 11:34 pm by yg1968 »

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #1 on: 06/15/2019 03:04 am »
Relevant bits from the Statement of Work after a brief scan.

* The Contractor’s logistics vehicle shall be designed to remain docked to Gateway for three years, with efficient crew access to stowage and payloads. The capability to remain longer should be considered.

* The common launch vehicle configuration shall have one successful flight prior to the GLS Missions.

* Contractor shall provide a capability to deliver a minimum of 3,400 kg of pressurized cargo to the Gateway

* Contractor shall provide a capability to deliver a minimum of 1000kg of unpressurized cargo to the Gateway.

Mission Unique Capabilities: the below are optional services that will be costed separately from baseline.
  * Extended support beyond one-year, in six-month increments, up to an additional two years.
  * A "fast delivery" option: docking 30 days or less from the time of launch.
  * EVA Translation Path/Anchor Points
  * An even more extended visit (beyond 3-years)
  * Late Cargo Load
  * Gateway Refueling
  * Additional Payload Power
  * Undock, Maneuver, and Re-Dock
  * Long-Term Habitation
  * Co-Manifested SLS Launch

* A placeholder is provided for a "Specialized Mission" to deliver a robotic arm to gateway.

I've attached both the Statement of Work PDF and the Requirements PDF to this post.  A ton of info in both.

Edit: Clarity
« Last Edit: 06/15/2019 11:12 am by theinternetftw »

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #2 on: 06/15/2019 05:01 am »
The vehicle will need the ability to automatically dock to the Gateway since it is arriving before the arm has been installed. Although an Orion, Dragon or CST-100 may be able to push it into place.

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #3 on: 06/15/2019 05:06 am »
First, from the Draft RFP:

* The total maximum value of each contract is $7 billion. The total amount of all task orders under all contracts awarded shall not exceed $7 billion.

And now a whole passel more from the Requirements PDF.  Good bit about the Gateway.  Mars is mentioned.

* A single Logistics Module may support up to two 30-day crew visits within its docked 3-year life, including a Logistics docked time of up to three months prior to crew arrival. Maximum crew duration is 90 days. The Gateway itself is quoted as having a 15 year life.

* The robotic arm will have a maximum mass of 2200 kg. The Logistics Module that delivers the robotic arm shall support Robotic Arm self-deployment and walk-off onto the Gateway.

* The Logistics Module shall perform autonomous docking and departure at any available Gateway radial port. Logistics EOM entails a safe and stable disposal orbit or other government-approved disposal location (though secondary missions are possible).

* The Logistics Module mass when docking shall not exceed 14 metric tons. A maximum mass constraint for Logistics Modules protects Gateway Guidance, Navigation, and Controls (GNC) and Attitude Control System sizing and development.

* The Logistics Module shall function autonomously while docked to the Gateway for up to 21 continuous days of communications blackout. The time period in this requirement is derived from missions beyond the Earth-Moon system with extended comm outages (e.g. Earth-Mars superior conjunction). Another similar section described the same as being required for "Lunar and Mars Gateway mission profiles."

* Nominal crewed pressure of 101 kPa (14.7 psi).  The expected Gateway atmosphere temperature range is 4C (39F) to 27C (81F). The former would be in uncrewed periods. Also in uncrewed periods, a humidity of 0%.

* Late load available at no less than 7 days before launch.  Although nominal Logistics Service Missions may take several months to deliver cargo, express services may take less than a week.

* The Logistics Module shall have an 800 mm (31.5 in) minimum diameter transfer passageway between the LM-to-Gateway docking interface.

* The Logistics Module shall provide no less than 1.8 kW continuous power to cargo & payloads during transit. 1.8 kW is consistent with an Orion Co-Manifested Payload available power budget.

* The LM will not be able to rely on Gateway to provide attitude that optimizes LM power generation and the LM will not be able to rely on obtaining power from the Gateway while docked. A Lunar synodic resonance NRHO will keep orbital night from Lunar eclipses at less than 1.5 hours.

* The NRHO will limit the time below 10,000 km (6214 mi) altitude above the lunar surface to less than 8 consecutive hours. This constraint for the Gateway was chosen to minimize orbit maintenance, to define natural environments for thermal and power systems designs, and provide for lunar observation opportunities. The short closest approach time can be used to constrain thermal needs.

* Low Lunar Orbits (LLO) are not planned because Orion cannot reach LLO and Gateway costs and technical challenges are significantly higher for orbit maintenance, power, communications, and thermal constraints.

* Hatches should be capable of operation by one crew member on either side in no more than 60 seconds, without the use of tools, with manual pressure equalization from either side, and with a window for direct, non-electronic visual observation of the environment on the opposite side of the hatch.

* The Logistics Module shall allow accessibility to emergency equipment by crew within 15 seconds from anywhere in the habitable volume. In the event of a hazardous event, the crew must have breathing air to evacuate and isolate themselves from the hazardous environment. This time is driven by the time that an alert is sounded and incapacitation of the crew.

* The Logistics Module shall have a predicted system hardware reliability of 0.94 per year for its defined mission environment without corrective maintenance in space.
« Last Edit: 06/15/2019 05:08 am by theinternetftw »

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #4 on: 06/15/2019 05:16 am »
Relevant bits from the Statement of Work after a brief scan.

{snip}
    * Gateway Refueling

{snip}

The Gateway uses Xenon for its main propellant and a monopropellant for high thrust operations. The landers are likely to use bipropellants which could be different for each stage.

The humans inside the space station will need water and air.

I hope the bridge module has the pipes to support all these fluids.

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #5 on: 06/15/2019 05:16 am »
The vehicle will need the ability to automatically dock to the Gateway since it is arriving before the arm has been installed. Although an Orion, Dragon or CST-100 may be able to push it into place.

Was just finishing up a requirements summary when you posted.  Those say autonomous docking is required.

* The Logistics Module shall perform autonomous docking and departure at any available Gateway radial port.

Offline speedevil

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #6 on: 06/15/2019 10:49 am »
Relevant bits from the Statement of Work after a brief scan.
  * Fast delivery: docking 30 days or less from the time of launch.
It's a pity in some ways this was included - ion propelled cargo may have been an interesting addition, though it has radiation challenges.
edit: I should have had more or less coffee before writing this. It is of course optional, as noted in the original message.
« Last Edit: 06/15/2019 11:05 am by speedevil »

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #7 on: 06/15/2019 11:03 am »
Relevant bits from the Statement of Work after a brief scan.
  * Fast delivery: docking 30 days or less from the time of launch.
It's a pity in some ways this was included - ion propelled cargo may have been an interesting addition, though it has radiation challenges.

To clarify, Fast Delivery is a "Mission Unique Capability" and is optional.  It may be needed for certain missions and offered at a premium. From the requirements doc:

Quote
Although nominal Logistics Service Missions may take several months to deliver cargo, express services may take less than a week.
« Last Edit: 06/15/2019 11:04 am by theinternetftw »

Offline Proponent

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #8 on: 06/15/2019 01:17 pm »
The Gateway uses Xenon for its main propellant....

[rant]
It's "xenon," please, not "Xenon."
[/rant]

EDIT:  Added the "rant" tags.
« Last Edit: 06/17/2019 07:02 pm by Proponent »

Offline brickmack

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway cargo services
« Reply #9 on: 06/15/2019 06:34 pm »
Relevant bits from the Statement of Work after a brief scan.
  * Fast delivery: docking 30 days or less from the time of launch.
It's a pity in some ways this was included - ion propelled cargo may have been an interesting addition, though it has radiation challenges.

To clarify, Fast Delivery is a "Mission Unique Capability" and is optional.  It may be needed for certain missions and offered at a premium. From the requirements doc:

Quote
Although nominal Logistics Service Missions may take several months to deliver cargo, express services may take less than a week.

This is very fortunate. Most of the companies that lost out on the Gateway PPE are planning to bid cargo derivates of their vehicles, and that'll likely mean 3-6 months in transit each way (LEO-cislunar-LEO). Dragon is also a candidate, but its only able to leave and depart from Gateways orbit if it uses a non-propulsive transfer for at least one leg of its journey (~3 days outbound with a ~6 month return, or vis versa).

General thoughts: Cygnus will probably be the best option for the first flight, in the 4 segment PCM variant. With initial crew flights being so infrequent,  a long on-orbit stay is likely non-negotiable for this mission. Dragon might technically be able to do a years-long flight, but that'd interfere with its reusability, and its probably much harder to qualify its heat shield materials for 3 years of exposure than Cygnus's metal/MLI exterior (Dragon already has problems contaminating ISS with outgassing from SPAM). Its larger pressurized volume allows it to augment the stations living/experiment space beyond just cargo carrying (already being demonstrated on Cygnus flights) It also has grapple fixtures already present, Dragon 2 does not and its not clear that they could be accommodated given it doesn't fly inside a fairing.

Probably only one PPE-derived vehicle will be selected by NASA, if any, because the very long transit time is problematic. I'm very confident that SNC will win this. Their Gateway PPE bid was the only one to already have a pressurized section included, and one which extensively derives from their CRS work. Their big downside for Gateway PPE was cost, but I suspect this is driven more by development than production costs, so not as big a problem for a cargo vehicle (multiple units built, and reused for years). The comments on SNCs bid in the source selection statement seemed to be practically begging them to resubmit this for the cargo solicitation, no other PPE bid got that sort of interest (and SNC seems to be more interested in closed-loop cislunar cargo delivery anyway).

Dragon only makes sense if there are enough manned flights to justify short (under 6 month) stays, allowing it to be reused on a reasonable schedule. The one big benefit it can offer is crew capacity, but this will be risky. The only way to deliver crew to and from Gateway with Dragon seems to be a dual-launch architecture. One Dragon launches first on a slow-transit low-dv trajectory to Gateway, carrying only cargo, then the second launches on a fast transit with crew. Then for the return flight, the roles are swapped, the first Dragon takes a fast return with crew and the second takes a slow cargo return. But this means rendezvous *has* to work (black zone with no abort potential after the NRHO insertion burn starts but before its completed), so a big risk
« Last Edit: 06/15/2019 06:53 pm by brickmack »

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #10 on: 06/15/2019 07:33 pm »
Maximum size may “protect” attitude control, etc, but it also protects all the other contractors from Starship.

The minimum pressurized payload requirement also helps protect contractors from Dragon without extensive mods.

Why does NASA do this to themselves?
« Last Edit: 06/15/2019 07:36 pm by Robotbeat »
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline Endeavour_01

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #11 on: 06/15/2019 09:40 pm »
The minimum pressurized payload requirement also helps protect contractors from Dragon without extensive mods.

For Dragon 1 yes but what about Dragon 2? I recall it having the ability for more pressurized cargo. Also that requirement would seemingly exclude the current 3 segment Cygnus too so I don't see how it's about "protecting contractors" from SpaceX.

I cheer for both NASA and commercial space. For SLS, Orion, Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy, Dragon, Starship/SH, Starliner, Cygnus and all the rest!
I was blessed to see the launch of Space Shuttle Endeavour on STS-99. The launch was beyond amazing. My 8-year old mind was blown. I remember the noise and seeing the exhaust pour out of the shuttle as it lifted off. I remember staring and watching it soar while it was visible in the clear blue sky. It was one of the greatest moments of my life and I will never forget it.

Online gongora

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #12 on: 06/15/2019 10:40 pm »
Dragon is smaller than NASA really wanted for CRS, I don't see it being competitive for the Gateway missions without extensive mods (go expendable, ditch the heat shield, cut a hole in the bottom and put more pressurized space in a larger trunk?)

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #13 on: 06/15/2019 11:16 pm »
The minimum pressurized payload requirement also helps protect contractors from Dragon without extensive mods.

For Dragon 1 yes but what about Dragon 2? I recall it having the ability for more pressurized cargo. Also that requirement would seemingly exclude the current 3 segment Cygnus too so I don't see how it's about "protecting contractors" from SpaceX.
Enhanced Cygnus can do that much on Atlas V, and Super Cygnus can also do it easily.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #14 on: 06/15/2019 11:19 pm »
Dragon is smaller than NASA really wanted for CRS, I don't see it being competitive for the Gateway missions without extensive mods (go expendable, ditch the heat shield, cut a hole in the bottom and put more pressurized space in a larger trunk?)
Itd be competitive particularly if NASA allowed smaller minimum pressurized cargo. Dragon has the somewhat unique capability of doing payload return, probably even from the Moon, plus can do significant comanifested External payload. This is super helpful for the gateway as well. It is also very complementary with Cygnus-style solutions.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

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Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #15 on: 06/15/2019 11:20 pm »
Dragon is smaller than NASA really wanted for CRS, I don't see it being competitive for the Gateway missions without extensive mods (go expendable, ditch the heat shield, cut a hole in the bottom and put more pressurized space in a larger trunk?)

Musk has said they could extend the length of the Dragon trunk, so they could stick pressurized cargo in there, assuming it's in its own pressurized containers.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #16 on: 06/15/2019 11:53 pm »
Im really struggling with the silly 14 ton max mass limit. The fully fueled lander will weigh a lot more than that with all three components.

ISS, even from the beginning when it was tiny, had Shuttle dock with it. Mir had Shuttle dock with it, too. That was like 100 tons. Why are they intentionally trying to exclude more ambitious solutions? Its so stupid.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #17 on: 06/16/2019 01:29 am »
Dragon is smaller than NASA really wanted for CRS, I don't see it being competitive for the Gateway missions without extensive mods (go expendable, ditch the heat shield, cut a hole in the bottom and put more pressurized space in a larger trunk?)

Musk has said they could extend the length of the Dragon trunk, so they could stick pressurized cargo in there, assuming it's in its own pressurized containers.
Cygnus use service module which is derived from GEO bus with years of flight history. SpaceX has yet to demonstrate any significant BLEO capability, FH US GEO direct demo mission is it and that only needed to last few hours.

Cygnus will need more DV and docking port, otherwise its very low risk.

Offline su27k

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #18 on: 06/16/2019 03:39 am »
Im really struggling with the silly 14 ton max mass limit. The fully fueled lander will weigh a lot more than that with all three components.

ISS, even from the beginning when it was tiny, had Shuttle dock with it. Mir had Shuttle dock with it, too. That was like 100 tons. Why are they intentionally trying to exclude more ambitious solutions? Its so stupid.

I'm not sure this matters, I don't think SpaceX wants to park a Starship on Gateway for 3 years, the opportunity cost would be way too high. I suspect it applies to Dragon too, do they really want a Dragon that has been in deep space for 3 years back? Seems to me it would be much easier if they just expend it, this way they don't need to fly the reentry equipment (parachutes, heat shields, etc) either.

I think the biggest issue with this RFP is the 3 years clause, why does NASA needs the cargo module to last two manned missions? They can afford to launch two SLS/Orion, but couldn't afford to launch two matching cargo re-supply missions? That makes no sense, the number of cargo missions should exceed the number of crew missions, just like ISS.

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Draft RFP for Gateway logistics/cargo services
« Reply #19 on: 06/16/2019 09:32 am »
Im really struggling with the silly 14 ton max mass limit. The fully fueled lander will weigh a lot more than that with all three components.

ISS, even from the beginning when it was tiny, had Shuttle dock with it. Mir had Shuttle dock with it, too. That was like 100 tons. Why are they intentionally trying to exclude more ambitious solutions? Its so stupid.

I'm not sure this matters, I don't think SpaceX wants to park a Starship on Gateway for 3 years, the opportunity cost would be way too high. I suspect it applies to Dragon too, do they really want a Dragon that has been in deep space for 3 years back? Seems to me it would be much easier if they just expend it, this way they don't need to fly the reentry equipment (parachutes, heat shields, etc) either.

I think the biggest issue with this RFP is the 3 years clause, why does NASA needs the cargo module to last two manned missions? They can afford to launch two SLS/Orion, but couldn't afford to launch two matching cargo re-supply missions? That makes no sense, the number of cargo missions should exceed the number of crew missions, just like ISS.

Reading between the line I suspect NASA is using the logistics module as the space station's storage cupboard. All the clothing, water and tools are kept in it. It is being pre-stocked.

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