[meteorite-list] NASA Innovative Advanced Concept Program Seeks Phase II Proposals

From: Ron Baalke <baalke_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Apr 2014 13:15:12 -0700 (PDT)
Message-ID: <201404182015.s3IKFCAt029336_at_zagami.jpl.nasa.gov>

April 18, 2014
NASA Innovative Advanced Concept Program Seeks Phase II Proposals

NASA's Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Program is seeking proposals for
technologies that could be used on future exploration missions. The new
proposals will build on the most promising ideas developed in the program's
first phase.

The NIAC program funds cutting-edge concepts that have the potential to
transform future missions, enable new capabilities, or significantly alter
current approaches to launching, building, and operating aerospace systems.

NIAC's Phase II studies provide an opportunity to develop the most promising
Phase I concepts. These are aerospace architecture, mission, or system
concepts with transformative potential. They must continue to push into new
frontiers, while remaining technically and programmatically credible. NIAC's
current portfolio of diverse efforts advances aerospace technology in many
areas, including construction, human systems, transportation, imaging, and
robotic exploration.

"During the second phase of our NIAC program, visionary concepts are matured
to advance concepts from notional to feasible," said Michael Gazarik, NASA's
associate administrator for space technology at the agency's headquarters in
Washington. "These advanced technology concepts are critical for
kick-starting innovation that will enable our future missions."

Recent NIAC Phase II studies have included a concept for a sample return for
extreme environments, which could lead to a simple and efficient way to
obtain multiple samples drilled out of an asteroid crust.

Another NIAC Phase II study is examining "SpiderFab," an approach to
3D-printing of large structures in space. This could one day enable NASA to
produce giant telescopes in orbit without having to design them to fit within
a rocket shroud or withstand the vibration and g-loads of launch.

"In NIAC Phase I Studies, the focus is basic feasibility and potential
benefit. In Phase II, we can get into real systems engineering and in some
cases even demonstration" said Jay Falker, NIAC program executive at NASA
Headquarters. "This is critical for taking concepts from paper studies to
engineering implementation. Phase II also helps address the important
technology development needs of NASA's current and future programs."

NASA will be accepting NIAC Phase II proposals of no more than 20 pages until
June 3. Selection announcements are expected later this year. This
solicitation is open only to current or previously awarded NIAC Phase I
concepts. Complete guidelines for proposal submissions are available on the
NIAC website at


NASA expects to select approximately five new Phase II studies this year. The
number of awards will depend on the strength of proposals, availability of
appropriated funds, and the overall number of Phase I and Phase II awards.
Selected proposers may receive as much as $500,000 over two years to further
analyze and develop their innovative concepts.

"Over the next 18 months, NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate will
make significant new investments that address several high priority
challenges for achieving safe and affordable deep-space exploration," Gazarik
added. "These focused technology thrust areas are tightly aligned with NASA's
Space Technology Roadmaps, the Space Technology Investment Plan, and National
Research Council's recommendations."

NIAC is part of NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate, which is
innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in NASA's future
missions. To view the NASA NIAC Research Announcement for this solicitation
and for more information about the agency's Space Technology Mission
Directorate, visit:



David E. Steitz
Headquarters, Washington
david.steitz at nasa.gov
Received on Fri 18 Apr 2014 04:15:12 PM PDT

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