SDA posts STEC call for proposals
On August 8, the Space Development Agency (SDA) posted a call for proposals as part of the National Defense Space Architecture (NDSA) Systems, Technologies, and Emerging Capabilities (STEC) broad agency announcement. Proposals are due by September 2.
Under the National Defense Space Architecture (NDSA) Systems, Technologies, and Emerging Capabilities (STEC) SDA Broad Agency Announcement, HQ085022S0001, posted on SAM.gov on January 13, 2022, SDA is issuing this Call for Proposals specifically seeking industry partnership to demonstrate laser communications from SDA’s Tranche 0 Transport Layer (first launch Sept 2022) to a laser equipped airborne platform as soon as practical.
While SDA is specifically interested in a live flight demonstration, potential Offerors may propose three phases (base + 2 contract options) – space to ground (risk reduction), space to moving ground (further risk reduction), and then space to an airborne platform, as long as the optical terminal maintains pedigree throughout. The most important of the phases is demonstrating laser communications from space to a moving airborne platform. The vendor must build and demonstrate to SDA’s Optical Standard v2.1.2, which is inherent to the Tranche 0 Optical Communications Terminal design.
Potential offerors should clearly articulate any Government-furnished equipment or information required to conduct the demonstration, including any verification or interoperability testing, but SDA is specifically seeking an Offeror-provided airborne platform of their choosing. This demonstration is concentrated on space to airborne test only to research, design, develop and test only.
Potential Offerors do not need to include optical terminal designs which expedite moving directly to manufacturing although such designs will be considered. Testing must include successful demonstration of pointing, acquisition and tracking (PAT) and the capability to acquire and maintain the link with stability to pass up to 1Gpbs test data. Potential Offerors are encouraged to submit proposals by 2 Sep 2022.
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