This BAA (IARPA-BAA-22-02) is for the Space debris Identification and Tracking (SINTRA) Program. IARPA seeks innovative solutions for the SINTRA Program, which is envisioned to be a 48-month effort, beginning approximately May 1, 2023, through April 30, 2026. IARPA will accept questions until September 23 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern. The BAA’s closing date is November 11 at 4:00 p.m. Eastern.

The SINTRA program seeks to develop novel, innovative techniques to detect, track, and characterize non-trackable orbital space debris. The detection of non-trackable orbital debris would enable safer operation of valuable government and commercial space assets. SINTRA performers will focus on two task areas (TAs): developing novel methods to identify debris signatures (TA1) and; establishing techniques for the persistent monitoring of the debris distribution (TA2).

SINTRA is planned as a 48-month multi-phase program which will drive the state-of-the-art for exploitation of data from existing sensors and new low-cost sensors capable of detecting orbital debris signatures, demonstrate signature detection, and develop automated methods for signature analysis, debris tracking, and debris characterization. If successful, SINTRA would enable the first tracking capability for the small debris population, reducing risk to space operations.

SINTRA will aim to develop innovative technologies to: (a) improve orbital debris detection and tracking; (b) reduce uncertainties of debris data in orbit propagation and prediction; and (c) characterize orbital debris size, density, and mass.

Offerors shall address two task areas (TAs) to meet the goal of SINTRA to exploit data from existing sensors or new low-cost sensors for the detection, tracking, and characterization of space debris 0.1 – 10 cm in size. Offerors will determine the threshold at which to track debris clouds instead of individual debris objects. Offerors must propose novel approaches to each of these TAs, and if selected as a Performer, will be required to create an end-to-end technology that incorporates software components from each TA.

Debris Detection, Tracking, and Characterization (TA1): The goal of TA1 is to research and develop novel, innovative techniques to detect, track, and characterize the size, mass, and density of space debris 0.1 – 10 cm in size, traveling in any orbital plane around the Earth.

Persistent Monitoring of the Debris Population (TA2): The goal of TA2 is to demonstrate the capability to persistently monitor the orbital debris population for objects 0.1 – 10 cm in size. The TA2 deliverable must incorporate the variations in orbital trajectory due to gravitational perturbations from the Sun and Moon, and non-gravitational forces, including solar radiation and atmospheric drag.

Review the full SINTRA BAA.

Source: SAM

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