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INSPECTA: INFRARED SPECTROSCOPY FOR ASTROCHEMISTRY: INTERROGATION OF RADIATION EXPOSED SAMPLES

on 12 August 2016

ESA Open Invitation To Tender AO8771
Open Date: 08/08/2016
Closing Date: 14/10/2016 13:00:00


Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 16.129.17
Prog. Ref.: TRP
Budget Ref.: E/0901-01 - TRP
Special Prov.: BE+DK+FR+DE+IT+NL+ES+SE+CH+GB+IE+AT+NO+FI+PT+GR+LU+CZ+RO+PL+EE+HU
Tender Type: C
Price Range: > 500 KEURO
Products: Satellites & Probes / Payloads / Instruments / Optical Instruments / Infrared spectroscopy
Technology Domains: Life & Physical Sciences / Instrumentation in Support of Physical Sciences / Sensors and Analytical Instrumentation
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of Technical & Quality Management
Department: Mechanical Engineering Department
Division: Mechatronics and Optics Division
Contract Officer: Magne-Lie, Karine
Industrial Policy Measure: C1 - Activities in open competition limited to the non-Larg...
Last Update Date: 08/08/2016
Update Reason: Tender issue

Future astrobiology missions aim at diagnosing the evolution of biological samples exposed to the space environment on orbits up to beyond the Van Allen belt (the 'true' space and radiation environment of relevance of future human exploration). The ageing/evolution of the samples should be followed in real time correlated to measurements of the environment, let alone for the fact that the samples may not be recoverable for analysis. Previous experiments on astrobiology/chemistry performed in LEO (EXPOSE) did not provide any in situ measurements, only post mortem analysis has been applied. In order to reveal important information on the kinetics of the processes the science community requires more detailed in situ analysis.Infra-red spectroscopy as a recognised tool to identify species and concentration in organic chemistry. It is therefore proposed as a versatile in situ measurement technique. Taking into account the very limited resources of an e.g.CubeSat mission, a high level of integration and targeted capabilities shall be achieved. A previous activity has already targeted the design and bread boarding of a compact (ATR) IR spectrometer integrated in a mole. This design however did not cover the desirable wavelength range to enable proper observation of the whole region of interest for organic chemistry (2-15mikron). New detector technologies and progress in the miniaturisation of spectrometers can be used to achieve a high level of integration while maintaining to some extent the required range and resolution. The target applications are astrobiology/astrochemistry experiments in LEO (ISS or CubeSat) or even highly elliptical orbits to avoid influences by the van Allen belt. The activity comprises the design, manufacturing and testing of an integrated IR spectrometer breadboard with access to samples of scientific relevance. Lab performance tests shall confirm the feasibility of the measurement requirements and engineering constraints. Further recommendations for an integration in an appropriate carrier shall be given. Procurement Policy: C(1) = Activity restricted to non-prime contractors (incl. SMEs). For additional information please go to EMITS news "Industrial Policy measures for non-primes, SMEs and RD entities in ESA programmes".

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