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Full Ocean Depth Challenge

The Navy is seeking ideas and best practices in materials that can withstand undersea challenges.

Total Cash Prizes Offered: $755,000
Type of Challenge: Technology demonstration and hardware
Partner Agencies | Federal: Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport, Office of Naval Research
Submission Start: 08/12/2019 02:00 PM ET
Submission End: 08/30/2019 02:00 PM ET

Description

Full ocean depths (nominally 6000m) and long-term exposure to seawater create great challenges in the undersea environment. These challenges restrict the design and capability of weapons, electronics and vehicles both manned and unmanned.

The goal of this prize challenge is to seek solutions or technology to:

Design and construct a body/payload section that will survive full ocean depth pressures (6000m/10,000psi). The body/section shall be cylindrical with at least one removable/reusable end cap, approximately 21” in length, nominal outer diameter of 5.125” with maximized payload volume, and shall be scalable to diameters from 4” to 60”.

Prizes

Total Cash Prize Pool

The total prize purse is up to $755,000. Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport (NUWCDIVNPT) and Office of Naval Research (ONR) may select up to three Phase III winners.

Prize Breakdown

Phase 1 – Concept White Paper Contest: Up to twenty-five (25) winners will receive written invitation to participate in Phase II.

Phase II – Technology Pitches: Up to three winners will receive a prize of $250,000 each for development of the Minimum Viable Product in accordance with their respective technology pitch and will receive written invitation to participate in Phase III. The winner of this prize will receive $75,000 for initial development of the Minimum Viable Product. The winner will receive the remaining $175,000 once virtual proof of life check has been completed. This shall be completed through a virtual means presenting the proof of life check to Navy experts.

Phase III – Technology Demonstration: At the conclusion of Phase III, the First Place winner will receive a prize of $5,000 and the possibility for a contract (under the Other Transaction Authority) for prototype development.

**NOTE: The Government will not be providing additional funds For Phase II and Phase III travel and accommodations at the Phase II Technology Pitch and the Phase III Technology Demonstration.**

Rules

Terms and Conditions

These terms and conditions apply to all participants in the Challenge.

Agreement to Terms. By responding to this announcement, the participant agrees to comply with and be bound by the rules (including these terms and conditions) of this prize challenge and the decisions of the Government, which rules and decisions are binding and final in all matters relating to this challenge.

Security Requirements. By responding to this announcement, the participant agrees to comply with the DoDM 5200.01 (all volumes) and any revisions to this manual.

Participation by Government Support Contractors. Government support contractors will assist in the review of any data provided by participants. A non-disclosure agreement (NDA) has been signed by the support contractors with the Government that precludes them from disclosing any proprietary data outside of the Government. If participants desire a separate NDA with the Government support contractors, participants should submit a NDA form, along with instructions, with their initial qualification application.

Other Transaction Authority (OTA). At the Government’s discretion, the Government may choose to award an Other Transaction Authority (OTA) award (under 10 U.S. Code, Section 2371 or 2371b) under these authorities to any chosen participant in this prize challenge. In the case of an award under 10 U.S. Code, Section 2371b, a successful prototype project may result in the further award of a follow-on OTA without additional competition. The case of an award under any of the authorities mentioned, significant quantities may be needed for field-testing.

NOTE: The Government may negotiate Government Purpose Rights when requesting proposals if an Other Transaction Authority award is contemplated.

Malware. Each participant warrants that the submission is virus free and free of malware.

Intellectual Property (IP) Rights. All data submitted under the Prize Challenge will be made available to NAVSEA and parties authorized to act on behalf of the NAVSEA. By accepting these Terms and Conditions, the Participant consents to the use of data submitted to NAVSEA. Any materials submitted to NAVSEA as part of a prize challenge submission become NAVSEA records and will not be returned.

The use of protective markings such as “Do Not Publicly Release – Trade Secret” or “Do Not Publicly Release – Confidential Proprietary Business Information” in the Header or Footer of the Submission is strongly encouraged where appropriate. However, Participants should be aware that the use of protective markings is not dispositive as to whether information will be released publicly pursuant to a request for records under the Freedom of Information Act, (FOIA) 5 U.S.C. §552, et. seq., as amended by the OPEN Government Act of 2007, Pub. L. No. 110-175. Any information received from the Participant is considered to be a federal agency record, and as such, subject to public release under FOIA. Decisions to disclose or withhold information received from a Participant are based on the applicability of one or more of the nine FOIA exemptions, not on the existence or nonexistence of protective markings. Only the agency’s designated FOIA Officer may determine if information sought under a FOIA request will be withheld pursuant to one or more of the nine FOIA exemptions. All FOIA requests received by NAVSEA are processed in accordance with 10 C.F.R. Part 1004. Participants will be notified of any FOIA requests for their submissions in accordance with 29 C.F.R. § 70.26. Participants may then have the opportunity to review materials and work with a NAVSEA FOIA representative prior to the release of materials.

By participating in this Challenge, each individual (whether participating singly or in a group) warrants and assures the Government that any data used for the purpose of submitting an entry for this Challenge, were obtained legally through authorized access to such data.

By participating in this Challenge, each individual (whether participating singly or in a group) warrants and assures the Government that there are no known or pending patents on or related to the technology proposed within the submissions or, if there are known or pending patents, that the patent holder grants to the Government a fully paid, nonexclusive, irrevocable, worldwide license to use, or have used on the Government’s behalf, the patented material.

Eligibility Requirements. Eligibility is subject to verification by the Government before cash prizes are awarded. Participants (residents or entities) who are designated by the United States Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control are not eligible to receive any cash prize in the Challenge. Participants who are listed, or become listed, on the Eawardxcluded Parties List found on www.sam.gov, have any active exclusions, or are otherwise unable to be deemed responsible in accordance with FAR 9.104-1 based on information available in FAPIIS, are not eligible to receive any cash prize in the Challenge.

Only U.S. citizens and entities incorporated in and maintaining a primary place of business in the United States are eligible to receive cash prizes in this Challenge.

Federal employees, including NAVSEA employees, and NAVSEA support contractors acting within the scope of their employment are not eligible to participate in the challenge. Likewise, members of their immediate family (spouses, children, step-children, siblings, step-siblings, parents, step-parents), and persons living in the same household, whether or not related, are not eligible to participate in any portion of this Challenge. Federal employees and contractors acting outside the scope of their employment should consult their ethics official and appropriate management before participating in the Challenge.

Individuals and organizations that are funded by NAVSEA, but not limited to, any Federally Funded Research and Development Centers and University Affiliated Research Centers (UARCs), or private-sector personnel whose scope of work includes NAVSEA development or administrative support are not eligible to participate in the challenge.

Taxes. Tax treatment of prizes will be handled in accordance with U.S. Internal Revenue Service guidelines. The winners must provide a U.S. taxpayer identification number (e.g. a social security number) to receive the cash prize.

Payment. Participants selected as monetary prize winners must submit all required taxpayer identification and bank account information required to complete an electronic payment of the monetary prize. Failure to provide the Government required documents for electronic payment within 30 days of notification by the Government will result in a disqualification of the winning entry.

Government Right to Cancel, Suspend or Modify Challenge. The Government reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel, suspend or modify the Challenge. These rules may be changed without prior notice, and all participants should monitor https://www.challenge.gov for the latest information. The Government further reserves the right to select no winners and award no prize money if the Government determines, in its sole discretion, that an award is not in the best interest of the Government.

Responsibility for Costs Incurred. Nothing in these rules, to include information on the websites publicizing the award, may be interpreted as authorizing the incurrence of any costs, or modifying the statement of work or authorizing work outside the terms and conditions of any existing agreements or contracts with the Government.

Participation in this prize challenge is at participant expense. The Government will not be responsible for any costs incurred by the participant, to include submission costs, travel costs, technology demonstration or development costs or any associated costs.

Release of Claims. The participant agrees to release and forever discharge any and all manner of claims, equitable adjustments, actions, suits, debts, appeals, and all other obligations of any kind, whether past or present, known or unknown, that have or may arise from, are related to or are in connection with, directly or indirectly, this prize challenge or the participant’s submission.

Liability. By participating in this challenge, the participant agrees to assume, and thereby has assumed, any and all risks of injury or loss in connection with, or in any way arising from participation in this challenge, or development of any submission.

Indemnification. The participant indemnifies the Government and its affiliates, directors, officers, employees against all liabilities, damages, losses, costs, fees (including legal fees), and expenses relating to any allegation or third-party legal proceeding to the extent arising from:

  • the participant’s acts or omissions in relation to the Challenge (including the participant’s use or acceptance of any prize and the participant’s breach of these Terms); and
  • the participant’s submissions violating any rights of any other person or entity or any obligation the participant may have with them.

Compliance with Laws. The participant agrees to follow and comply with all applicable federal, state and local laws, regulations and policies.

Disclaimers. ALL CONTENT PROVIDED BY THE GOVERNMENT IS PROVIDED ON AN "AS IS" AND "AS AVAILABLE" BASIS. THE GOVERNMENT DISCLAIMS ALL REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES (EXPRESS OR IMPLIED), INCLUDING ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY INCOMPLETE, FAILED, OR DELAYED TRANSMISSION OF YOUR APPLICATION INFORMATION OR SUBMISSIONS DUE TO THE INTERNET, INCLUDING INTERRUPTION OR DELAYS CAUSED BY EQUIPMENT OR SOFTWARE MALFUNCTION OR OTHER TECHNICAL PROBLEMS. REFERENCE HEREIN TO ANY SPECIFIC COMMERCIAL PRODUCTS, PROCESS, OR SERVICE BY TRADE NAME, TRADEMARK, MANUFACTURER, OR OTHERWISE, DOES NOT CONSTITUTE OR IMPLY ITS ENDORSEMENT, RECOMMENDATION, OR FAVORING BY THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT.

Severability. If any term (or part of a term) of these terms or rules is invalid, illegal or unenforceable, the rest of the terms or rules will remain in effect.

Translations. In the event of any discrepancy between the English version of these terms and rules and a translated version, the English version will govern.

Governing Law. This prize challenge is subject to all applicable federal laws and regulations. ALL CLAIMS ARISING OUT OF OR RELATING TO THESE TERMS WILL BE GOVERNED BY THE FEDERAL LAWS AND REGULATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

Availability of Funds. The Government’s obligation for prizes under 10 U.S.C. 2374a is subject to availability of appropriated funds from which payment for prize purposes can be made. No legal liability on the part of the Government for any payment of prizes may arise unless appropriated funds are available to the United States Navy for such purposes.

Points of Contact:

For technical and challenge related questions, please send an email to Christopher.r.hebert@navy.mil with “Challenge Title” in the subject line.

The Government will post all questions and responses on the Federal Business Opportunities (FBO.gov).

Contestants should expect that their questions and the Government’s responses will be made available to all those accessing the FBO.gov.

A deadline for Industry submission of questions is hereby established. The deadline for prize challenge question submission is 2:00 PM Eastern Time on 12 August 2019. After this date and time, the Government may not respond to questions received.

NUWCDIVNPT reserves the right to cancel, suspend, and/or modify the challenge, or any part of it, if any fraud, technical failures, or any other factor beyond NUWCDIVNPT’s reasonable control impairs the integrity or proper functioning of the challenge, as determined by NUWCDIVNPT in its sole discretion. NUWCDIVNPT is not responsible for, nor is it required to accept, incomplete, late, misdirected, damaged, unlawful, or illicit submissions.

Judging Criteria

Judging Panel

The Technology Pitch and Technology Demonstration will be presented to NUWCDIVNPT and ONR experts.

Judging Criteria

Phase I: The concept white paper must be submitted on time and address/outline the following areas:

  • Knowledge
  • Skills
  • Capabilities meeting the Challenge

The concept white paper shall be no more than five (5) pages in length in Times New Roman font and no smaller than size 11 font.

A panel of judges will screen all submissions for compliance with the rules and terms and conditions detailed herein.

Phase II: Each of the companies that move onto Phase II will be invited to pitch their proposal to the panel of judges during certain days. In Phase II, companies will be evaluated by the review panel on a scale of 0-25 points (25 being the highest). The evaluation criteria is provided below:

 

Company/Topic #:

Date:

Team or Company Name / Brief Description:

 

 

 

INVESTMENT CRITERIA

BETTER SCORE  >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Criteria

Description

Low Score                    Average                         High Score

Technical Approach

Realistic, viable and feasible technology/approach to be completed in 6 months

1

2

3

4

5

Comments / Notes:

 

 

 

 

Team Background and Capabilities

 Team proposed has knowledge and capacity to complete proposed work

1

2

3

4

5

Comments / Notes:

 

 

 

 

Proposal  Fitness

Proposal outcomes/deliverables answer the topic challenge and there is a path to a prototype

1

2

3

4

5

Comments / Notes:

 

 

 

 

Risk Reduction

Risks/mitigation strategies acceptable

1

2

3

4

5

Comments / Notes:

 

 

 

 

Understanding

Proposer understands the stakeholders and beneficiaries

1

2

3

4

5

Comments / Notes:

 

 

 

 

Worst Score: 5 Criteria x 1 = 5

Avg. Score:   5 Criteria x 3 = 15

Best Score:   5 Criteria x 5 = 25

Total Score:

The virtual proof of life check of the Minimum Viable Product shall be presented to the Navy experts. The virtual presentation shall present a preliminary concept/design.

Phase III: The offeror shall be evaluated based on the below demonstration criteria:

  • Withstanding 10,000 psi Depth Pressure: The pressure test cycle will be 10 cycles to 10,000 psi, holding for 5 min each cycle until the last cycle holds for 30 minutes.
  • Length: The payload section should be approximately 21 inches.
  • Nominal Outer Diameter (OD): Nominal OD measure to be 5.125 inches.
  • Minimum Inner Diameter (ID): Minimum ID measured to be at least 4 inches, with larger ID’s successfully pressure tested scoring higher.
  • Endcap(s): The internal design space shall be accessible through removable/reusable endcap(s) after successful pressure test is complete.
  • Potential Scalability to Larger Diameters: Proposal should demonstrate that design/fabrication approach provides potential scalability to larger diameter shells.
  • Factor of safety: Design factor of safety will be considered in evaluation.

How To Enter

Entries must be submitted via email to christopher.r.hebert@navy.mil by 02:00 Eastern Time on 30 August 2019. Submissions received after the deadline will not be considered.

Submissions including attachments shall use the following filename convention:

Company or Individual Name (e.g., Company or Individual Name_concept.pdf, Company or Individual Name _schematic.pdf)