Boeing [NYSE:BA] NASA Systems received its first study contract under the Vision for Space Exploration to conduct preliminary concept studies for human lunar exploration and the development of the crew exploration vehicle (CEV).
The contract is valued at $3 million with an option for another $3 million. The contract includes a six-month base period beginning Sept. 1, with a six-month option, which may be exercised at the government's discretion. Options may be exercised based on several factors, including the quality of performance during the base period, fiscal constraints and overall support to the Vision for Space Exploration.
Boeing is one of 11 companies helping NASA define the overall architecture requirements for lunar missions in the 2015 to 2020 timeframe. The missions are part of the Vision for Space Exploration, announced by President Bush on January 14. The Vision provides a new focus for a sustained and affordable human and robotic space exploration program to explore the solar system and beyond. The contract is a result of the Concept Exploration and Refinement (CE&R) Broad Agency Announcement issued in June 2004.
"Our priority is to put forth our best and most innovative ideas to help NASA better define the CEV and systems requirements," said Chuck Allen, Boeing vice president and program manager of Space Exploration Systems (SES) in Washington , D.C.
Boeing will concentrate the contract study in two areas. The first is the preliminary concept for human lunar exploration focusing on a "system-of-systems" approach. The second concept area will focus on the CEV including design drivers, launch considerations, launch vehicle integration, and risk specific to achieving the 2014 goal of a crewed flight. Additional specific focus areas include safety, reliability, sustainability, affordability, and extensibility/evolvability.
"For Boeing, this is a first step toward defining how we move into space to achieve the goals defined by the Vision," said Dallas Bienhoff, Boeing program manager for the study effort and SES chief architect. "We will help define how we explore space in a manner we can afford as a nation."
The contract study will be conducted at Boeing sites in Washington, D.C., Huntington Beach, Calif., Huntsville, Ala., Kennedy Space Center, Fla., and Houston.
"While the bulk of the work will be done in Huntington Beach and Huntsville , we will pull in analysis and technical expertise from our subcontractors and across Boeing as necessary."
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis , Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $27 billion business. It provides systems solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in launch services.