Canadian Space Agency Issues RFP for Space Exploration Topical Teams

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) today issued a request for proposals (RFP) seeking bids from qualified organizations in order to form Topical Teams (TTs) with interest and expertise in the CSA’s Space Exploration Science and Space Health Topics in nine specific subject areas, for the purpose of providing a report of updated community science priorities to CSA.

A maximum of $20,000 will be available to each of the Space Health TTs and $15,000 for the Space Astronomy and Planetary Exploration TTs. The deadline to submit a proposal is July 28, 2015. Any contract awarded will last 18 months.
Task Description
Each Topical Team (TT) is expected to use support to prepare a report describing prioritized scientific objectives and investigations for the discipline. Science objectives and investigations are seen as a necessary means to link high level goals with missions.
Updated priorities should be relevant to missions with target launch dates beginning in the mid-2020s, and include preparatory activities that could begin as soon as 2016.
The reports generated by the TTs will be combined with those of the other selected TTs, and made available to the space exploration community by the CSA in English and French.
The tasks of a TT shall be to:
– Review and revise the science objectives presented in AD1, and update these based on recent results from missions and ground based research, and the context provided in AD2, AD3 and AD4.
– Propose criteria for prioritising these objectives.
– Use such criteria, agreed with CSA, to prioritize these objectives.
– Identify science investigations, advanced systems or facilities, related to the prioritized objectives, in the following categories as appropriate for the science or space health discipline:
— Preparatory research (e.g. laboratory and field studies, modelling, simulation)
— Instrument development for space
— System or facility development for space
— Low cost space exploration missions (e.g. nanosats, micro-rovers, balloons)
— Data analysis or data mining
— New paradigms for crew-driven research
— Other categories as agreed with CSA at the kickoff meeting
– For each investigation
— Provide a description of the investigation/advanced system/facility.
— Provide information on socio-economic benefits: include evaluation of Canadian-led versus international collaboration.
— Provide information on current Canadian capabilities: is this an established or emerging area of Canadian strength for scientific research and/or industry capacity.
— Where appropriate, provide information on needs for test and demonstration. Where test requires an analogue activity, provide suggestions for the analogue site or facility.
— Other pertinent information as agreed with CSA
– Support the editing process in generating a combined report from all TTs.
– Other tasks as mutually agreed between the Contractor and the CSA.
The TT shall adhere to the “Topical Teams in Space Exploration – Terms and Conditions” provided in Appendix 1 of the SOW that defines the scope, mandate and membership.
Space Exploration Science and Space Health Topics
The formation of Topical Teams is requested for the following nine (9) topics :
Within the field of Space Astronomy:
Astronomical research has many sub-disciplines and typically requires different types of space platforms for investigations, although some may be common. In order to collect recommendations efficiently and bring together overlapping sub-disciplines, the following three general areas are defined for the TT. The Bidder may augment a Space Astronomy Topic with an additional sub-discipline should a gap be perceived.
1. Cosmology, dark energy (DE) and cosmic microwave background (CMB)
2. Origins, including formation and evolution of galaxies, stars, and planets (including detection and characterization of exoplanets)
3. High energy astrophysics (HEA)
Within the field of Space Health:
4. Multi-disciplinary approach to health risk mitigation in space
5. Space radiation risk to humans identification, characterization and mitigation
Within the field of Planetary Exploration:
For planetary exploration, the Bidder is required to prioritise the targets (planets, moon, and small bodies) included in the proposal as an additional part of the prioritisation task.
6. Astrobiology (solar system and exoplanets)
7. Planetary Atmospheres
8. Planetary Geology, Geophysics and Prospecting
9. Planetary Space Environment, excluding geospace
Download the SPACE EXPLORATION TOPICAL TEAMS (9F052-140994/A) RFP documents.

About Marc Boucher

Boucher is an entrepreneur, writer, editor & publisher. He is the founder of SpaceQ Media Inc. and CEO and co-founder of SpaceRef Interactive LLC. Boucher has 20+ years working in various roles in the space industry and a total of 30 years as a technology entrepreneur including creating Maple Square, Canada's first internet directory and search engine.

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