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99-92

For Release:  November 30, 1999


Pam Caswell
(216/433-5795)

Lori J. Rachul
(216/433-8806)



NASA Awards $173 Million Contract to Federal Data Corporation for Microgravity Research Support

NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, OH, has awarded a contract to Federal Data Corporation, Brook Park, OH, to provide activities in the development, fabrication, assembly, test, delivery and operation of microgravity research facilities and experiment payloads.

In performing the main tasks of the contract, Federal Data Corporation will design and build the Fluids and Combustion Facility for the International Space Station; operate a telescience support center for Glenn's microgravity program; and develop and build hardware and instruments for microgravity flight experiments proposed by principle investigators. The research platforms for the flight experiments may be aboard the Space Shuttle, sounding rockets or the International Space Station.

The performance-based contract provides $72.4 million for the design and construction of the fluids and combustion facility. The contract provides a maximum of $101 million for the operations of the telescience support center and the development and operation of flight experiment hardware, which will be accomplished through indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity delivery orders. The contract provides options for additional experiments and operations if required by Glenn.

The delivery order and payment aspects of the contract are designed to foster contractor innovation and autonomy. They provide to the Government flexibility when specific quantities and requirements cannot be predicted and enable the Government to issue fixed price incentive firm; firm fixed price; or cost plus incentive fee orders based on the maturity of the requirements.

Glenn researchers and their university partners conduct fluid physics experiments to learn how fluids behave and combustion science experiments to learn how flames and the products of combustion behave without the effects of gravity. The information learned can be used in a variety of applications including improved vehicle cooling methods in space and improved firefighting and fire safety procedures on Earth as well as in space.

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