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Request for Information (RFI) for Robotic Underground Munitiion (RUM) Technology

Solicitation Number: CXW100018212
Agency: Other Defense Agencies
Office: Defense Threat Reduction Agency
Location: Defense Threat Reduction Agency (Headquarters)
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CXW100018212
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Sources Sought
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Added: Mar 12, 2010 9:39 am
The Weapons and Capabilities Division (RD-CXW) of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) is soliciting government, industry, and academia for high quality and innovative advanced technologies relevant to the development of a Robotic Underground Munition (RUM).  The RUM would be a one-time use, air-delivered, highly mobile vehicle having certain characteristics similar to an unmanned ground vehicle.

Besides relevant advanced technologies, RD-CXW is also seeking interested sources capable of performing as the weapon development prime and able to integrate technologies and produce and demonstrate a prototype robotic munition.

The following technology development objectives relate to key RUM technologies that could benefit from near-term technology development and demonstration:

1.  Survivable underground communication system.
2.  Capabilities to efficiently overcome natural and man-made obstacles.
3.  Robust sensors and perception.

Other technologies necessary to produce a viable RUM are assessed to be at a higher technology readiness level (TRL) or would better profit from further development at a later date or by the weapon developer.  As such, a potential prime's knowledge or capabilities in these areas is desired.  These include:

1.  Payload and fuzing development, integration and demonstration.  The payload must be compatible with inflight and ground environments including long term storage under adverse temperature conditions, as well as all DoD insensitive munitions and other safety requirements.
2.  Viable passive and active defensive and offensive systems.
3.  Autonomous underground controls and navigation.
4.  Vehicle control logic to avoid, traverse, neutralize or defeat natural and man-made obstacles.
5.  Safe separation and accurate soft landing form an aircraft.

Potential sources (either along or with appropriate teaming partners) interested in performing as the RUM weapon development prime must have expertise and capability in all of the following areas:

1.  Robotic vehicle design and manufacture
2.  Sensor integration and autonomous controls
3.  Munition design and manufacture
4.  Aircraft integration
5.  Mission planning

Responders to the RFI may choose to address any or all of the listed technology objectives, any or all of the listed technology objectives and the RUM development prime, or just the RUM development prime.  Approaches that require significant basic or applied research (i.e. RDT&E categories 6.1 and 6.2) are not desired.  Responders with a SECRET or higher facility clearance may contact the DTRA Contracting Officer, Ms. Gretchen Clohessy, at RUM@dtra.mil for more detailed RUM performance goals. 

Responses shall be limited to no more than 20 pages, not including cover letter, cover page, and table of contents.  Each response may address one, or multiple, technology objectives.  In addition, responses should include, but are not limited to, the following:  (a) technology concept(s) and associated performance, cost, and risk parameters; (b) respondent's stated assumptions; (c) technology maturity and Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs); (d) cost drivers (not Rough Order of Magnitude (ROM), but activities identified to consume the majority of cost and labor resources); and (e) any other programmatic and technical information respondents deem necessary to aid the government in its program planning, decision making, and execution.  Also include information such as:  Company name, address, e-mail, telephone number, points of contact, CAGE code, and size of business pursuant to the North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS).

Upon review of all submissions in response to this RFI, DTRA may schedule individual meetings with any or all respondents to gain further understanding to thier specific responses.

Responses shall be submitted no later than 5:00 PM EST on 9 April 2010 to DTRA, Robotic Underground Munition at RUM@DTRA.MIL.  All responses shall be transmitted electronically.  Submissions shall be compatible with and accessible using Microsoft Office software applications.

Additional information:  There is no commitment by the Government to issue a solicitation, to make an award(s), or to be responsible for any monies expended by any interested parties in support of any effort in response to this RFI.  Any information submitted in response to this RFI is strictly voluntary.  This RFI is for information planning purposes and the Government will not pay or otherwise reimburse respondents for information submitted.  It is the responsibility of potential offerors to monitor this site for the release of any follow-on information.  All documentation shall become the property of the Government.  Unless otherwise stated herein, no additional information is available and requests for the same will be disregarded.
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DTRA Annex
8725 John J. Kingman Road, MSC 6201
Fort Belvoir, Virginia 22060-6201
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Gretchen Clohessy,
Contracting Officer