Author Topic: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)  (Read 20702 times)

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #60 on: 07/05/2018 08:58 PM »
CLPS Q&A 2 has been posted.  It's more inside-baseball than the first.  Mostly a lot of attempts to get rid of various clauses in the DRFP.

What did stand out:

* On-ramping will start in 2020 (A potential provider wanted it started in 2019)

* Another potential provider wanted the deadline for delivering 10kg to the moon to be changed from 2021 to 2024. Not happening.

* NASA will not require on-site representatives.

* NASA is not willing to say they'll give up rights to inventions made with government funds to service the contracts.  Small businesses (< 1500 employees) can get out of it by patenting the invention.  Large businesses have to get NASA to issue waivers (which they'll do at their discretion).

Are NASA and the contractor using different definitions of on-ramping? The contractor meaning the initial batch of landers and NASA having a clause allowing for companies that apply several years late.

I assume the 10kg payload is a quality inspection by NASA. A payload possibly containing accelerometers to ensure the lander landed rather than crashed. With radio, GPS, inertial measurement unit and star trackers to verify the payload actually arrived on the Moon.

It is clause 52 that worried me.
"Govt Response: The clause will not be changed.  NASA does not intend to issue task orders that cannot be completed within one year of the end of the contractís effective ordering period."
Does this mean that NASA will not allow a contractor to be more than 1 year late? Or contractors have only 1 year to build the lander and buy launch vehicles?

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #61 on: 07/05/2018 09:34 PM »
Are NASA and the contractor using different definitions of on-ramping? The contractor meaning the initial batch of landers and NASA having a clause allowing for companies that apply several years late.

I think it's all NASA's definition. It's just that a potential contractor doesn't think they can get accepted into the cohort by 2018, but do think they can by 2019. And they don't want to have to wait for 2020.

I assume the 10kg payload is a quality inspection by NASA. A payload possibly containing accelerometers to ensure the lander landed rather than crashed. With radio, GPS, inertial measurement unit and star trackers to verify the payload actually arrived on the Moon.

First, it can be more than 10kg.  That's just the baseline you have to be able to provide to get into the program.  I think NASA sees such a capability as the potential 2019 landers (with two years of wiggle room to still accept those who are close to ready but can't do it by 2019). These will take the "whatever we have on hand" payloads (see the attached RFI on that post). Think cubesat instruments, but sitting on the moon.

It is clause 52 that worried me.
"Govt Response: The clause will not be changed.  NASA does not intend to issue task orders that cannot be completed within one year of the end of the contract’s effective ordering period."
Does this mean that NASA will not allow a contractor to be more than 1 year late? Or contractors have only 1 year to build the lander and buy launch vehicles?

The "contract's effective ordering period" here is not for the individual task orders (moon landings and such) that will make up the contract, but for the contract as a whole. NASA is saying that they don't intend to spring anything crazy on the contractors in the last year of the contract, but there are some missions they think *will* be able to be done a year after being issued (remember this is many years in the future, like 2028 or so), so they're reserving the right to be able to request one.  If such a request is *still* crazy, even in 2028, then it's just one task order ten years from now that all the contractors will ignore.
« Last Edit: 07/05/2018 09:35 PM by theinternetftw »

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #62 on: 07/06/2018 01:01 AM »
{snip}
It is clause 52 that worried me.
"Govt Response: The clause will not be changed.  NASA does not intend to issue task orders that cannot be completed within one year of the end of the contractís effective ordering period."
Does this mean that NASA will not allow a contractor to be more than 1 year late? Or contractors have only 1 year to build the lander and buy launch vehicles?

The "contract's effective ordering period" here is not for the individual task orders (moon landings and such) that will make up the contract, but for the contract as a whole. NASA is saying that they don't intend to spring anything crazy on the contractors in the last year of the contract, but there are some missions they think *will* be able to be done a year after being issued (remember this is many years in the future, like 2028 or so), so they're reserving the right to be able to request one.  If such a request is *still* crazy, even in 2028, then it's just one task order ten years from now that all the contractors will ignore.

In which case NASA will probably be bidding the CLPS-2 contracts in 10 years time. Any thing difficult would be attached to the new contract. NASA may change the name.

Offline theinternetftw

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Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #64 on: 07/17/2018 12:30 AM »
And here's that same list, organized:

Lunar CATALYST:
Astrobotic
Masten Space Systems
Moon Express

International Former Lunar XPrize competitors:
iSpace (Tokyo-based)
Team Indus (Bangalore-based)
PTScientists (Berlin-based)

Big Names:
Aerojet Rocketdyne
Blue Origin
Dynetics
Lockheed Martin Corporation
Orbital ATK (Was listed again as Orbital Sciences with different POC)
Sierra Nevada Corporation
SpaceX
Space Systems Loral / Maxar
ULA

Likely interested in incidental roles:
Bryce Space Technology (Former Tauri Group subsidiary, analytics firm)
DRAPER (Draper Labs, of MIT fame - maybe it'll be a full proposal from them, what do I know?)
Spaceflight Industries

Known contractors with revenue >50M:
Fibertek, Inc
MEI Technologies, Inc.

Known contractors with revenue >1M:
Gloyer-Taylor Laboratories, LLC
Special Aerospace Services

Unknowns:
Advanced Space (has done software contracting for NASA)
Lunar Experiences
Lunar Express (same guy as Lunar Experiences)
MERC (Miller Engineering & Research Corporation)
Noosphere
VALT Enterprises

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #65 on: 07/17/2018 02:17 AM »
Is it a comprehensive list? Notably absent is Boeing but I guess since ULA is putting together a proposal then it kinda makes sense. But then again, LM is listed as an interested party

It's the official list but more could be added.

Boeing seems like it would have already been on there if they were interested.  That's not 100% certain, but likely.

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #66 on: 08/03/2018 05:00 AM »
The official list of companies declaring interest in CLPS has been updated after giving more time for folks to request to be on it. The only change from the list as originally released is the addition of a small contractor in Arizona, Crow Industries.

No other companies were added (e.g. Boeing is not on the list).

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #67 on: 08/10/2018 07:49 AM »
Some news:

The RFP date has been moved to 8/28.
The Proposal due date has been moved to 9/28.
Contract award date has remained at 12/31.

Another Q&A has been posted (and is attached).  Some highlights:

* The Govt makes it clear that Launch Vehicle and Lander must be domestic (note the foreign XPrize competitors registering interest above).

* Still a lot of fighting over government having usage rights for any IP invented during the contract, for the contract.

* No exclusions on co-manifesting "non-American commercial and government payloads" alongside NASA's payloads.

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #68 on: 08/10/2018 11:27 PM »
NASA bringing down the hammer on this domestic-only thing:

Quote
NASA has determined that creating or maintaining required domestic capabilities for production of critical space transportation services and vehicles to perform those services by limiting competition to capabilities manufactured in the United States or its outlying areas by domestically-owned and controlled entities is consistent with and necessary to implement United States space policy. [...]

CLPS space transportation service provider prime contractors, as well as all firms that construct, produce, manufacture or otherwise provide space transportation vehicles for the purpose of the prime contractor's performance of CLPS must qualify as domestically owned and controlled as defined by the CLPS solicitation. Additionally, all CLPS space transportation service provider prime contractors shall provide a CLPS that utilizes domestic end products for all space transportation vehicles required for performance of this contract, inclusive of any launch vehicle and any other space transportation vehicle used to deliver payloads to the lunar surface. [...]

NASA's intent is to limit sources for the CLPS procurement for the purposes of industrial mobilization.
« Last Edit: 08/10/2018 11:27 PM by theinternetftw »

Offline PhotoEngineer

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #69 on: 08/12/2018 04:53 AM »
NASA bringing down the hammer on this domestic-only thing:

Quote
NASA has determined that creating or maintaining required domestic capabilities for production of critical space transportation services and vehicles to perform those services by limiting competition to capabilities manufactured in the United States or its outlying areas by domestically-owned and controlled entities is consistent with and necessary to implement United States space policy. [...]

CLPS space transportation service provider prime contractors, as well as all firms that construct, produce, manufacture or otherwise provide space transportation vehicles for the purpose of the prime contractor's performance of CLPS must qualify as domestically owned and controlled as defined by the CLPS solicitation. Additionally, all CLPS space transportation service provider prime contractors shall provide a CLPS that utilizes domestic end products for all space transportation vehicles required for performance of this contract, inclusive of any launch vehicle and any other space transportation vehicle used to deliver payloads to the lunar surface. [...]

NASA's intent is to limit sources for the CLPS procurement for the purposes of industrial mobilization.

They basically called out iSpace by name in one of the last ones too.

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #70 on: 08/12/2018 05:55 PM »
They basically called out iSpace by name in one of the last ones too.

Well the question they were answering from iSpace was pretty much (in slightly broken English) "Hey, we're Japanese and own a US company, are we cool to run a CLPS contract, or do we just sell our vehicles to other prime contractors?"

I think when they got that question was when they realized they needed to be more explicit than usual.
« Last Edit: 08/12/2018 05:58 PM by theinternetftw »

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #71 on: 08/12/2018 06:29 PM »
One thing that'd be nice to do in the future is start linking up all the companies in the interested parties list to show which ones are working together.

An obvious one would be ULA+Masten.  Though if it's just Masten (as ACES is far off), ULA could be on the list to offer rides.

One that's less obvious but does have a little weight behind it is SNC+AJR, as they are apparently working together for their PPE study, and that means they already have a relationship, so maybe they've decided to buddy up for all things moon?  Like I said, just a guess at this point.

Draper Lab is probably doing flight software for somebody.  Might be SNC, as Draper's doing the FSW for Dream Chaser.  So that would be SNC+AJR+Draper, if everything above is the case.

Any other connections are more opaque.

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #72 on: 08/13/2018 03:24 AM »
One thing that'd be nice to do in the future is start linking up all the companies in the interested parties list to show which ones are working together.

An obvious one would be ULA+Masten.  Though if it's just Masten (as ACES is far off), ULA could be on the list to offer rides.

One that's less obvious but does have a little weight behind it is SNC+AJR, as they are apparently working together for their PPE study, and that means they already have a relationship, so maybe they've decided to buddy up for all things moon?  Like I said, just a guess at this point.

Draper Lab is probably doing flight software for somebody.  Might be SNC, as Draper's doing the FSW for Dream Chaser.  So that would be SNC+AJR+Draper, if everything above is the case.

Any other connections are more opaque.

Here is another pair: https://www.astrobotic.com/2018/7/17/astrobotic-selects-dynetics-as-propulsion-provider-for-the-peregrine-lunar-lander
I tried it at home

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #73 on: 08/16/2018 03:58 AM »
NASA bringing down the hammer on this domestic-only thing

The hammerfall continues and is probably concluded with this latest release (the full text of which is attached).

Quote
The Commercial Lunar Payload Services RFP will contain the following clause and certification provision. [...]

I.21 DOMESTIC SOURCE CRITERIA AND COMPLIANCE [...]

The Commercial Lunar Payload Service (CLPS) is by definition a space transportation service, and as such, requires the construction of a space transportation vehicle (or vehicles) in order to perform this service. As such, both the CLPS space transportation service provider prime contractor, as well as all firms that construct, produce, manufacture or otherwise provide space transportation vehicles for the purpose of the prime contractor’s performance of CLPS, must be United States commercial providers as defined above. Additionally, throughout its performance of the contract (including any and all task orders awarded thereunder), the CLPS space transportation service provider prime contractor shall provide a CLPS that utilizes domestic end products for all space transportation vehicles required for performance of this contract, inclusive of any launch vehicle and any other space transportation vehicle used to deliver payloads to the lunar surface. CLPS space transportation vehicles will be considered domestic end products only if the cost of their components, mined, produced or manufactured in the United States exceed fifty (50) percent of the cost of all their components. The cost of each component includes transportation costs to the place of incorporation into the CLPS and any applicable duty (whether or not a duty - free entry certificate is issued).
« Last Edit: 08/16/2018 04:03 AM by theinternetftw »

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #74 on: 09/05/2018 05:31 AM »
Once again the Final RFP date has moved forward, this time to September 7th. Good news is that's close enough that it should finally actually be right.

The interested parties list has been updated again, adding only Starliner Engineering, Inc.

How are the international Lunar XPrize teams going to try to get in on a domestically sourced contract, you ask? Well, here's one way: Starliner Engineering, Inc. was created two and a half weeks ago in the great state of Delaware. Its point of contact is a member of TeamIndus.

Offline brickmack

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #75 on: 09/05/2018 08:23 PM »
Found http://www.starlinerinc.com/ Logo is similar-ish to Starliner (the Boeing spacecraft), especially the A, but still distinct. Ripoff attempt?

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #76 on: 09/05/2018 10:59 PM »
"Maybe they'll think we're Boeing." Bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off.

Offline Tomness

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #77 on: 09/06/2018 06:21 AM »
"Maybe they'll think we're Boeing." Bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off.
Either it is Boeing, approved or they are about to get sued.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #78 on: 09/06/2018 10:40 AM »
A whois on that gives an address in Scottsdale, Arizona, of a company called Blue Razor, which is owned by GoDaddy, who is the registrar. The actual owner is hidden from us.

https://www.bluerazor.com/about-us
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline theinternetftw

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Re: Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program (CLPS)
« Reply #79 on: 09/06/2018 10:16 PM »
Surprise! The final RFP came out a day early.

Proposals are due 2018-10-09.
Selections ostensibly still made by 2018-12-31.

Edit: RFP files are now attached.
« Last Edit: 09/06/2018 10:57 PM by theinternetftw »

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