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Assured Supply for Soft Ballistic Material Manufacturing

Assured Supply for Soft Ballistic Material Manufacturing

General Information

Document Type:SRCSGT
Posted Date:Oct 25, 2018
Category: Miscellaneous
Set Aside:N/A

Contracting Office Address

Department of the Army, Army Contracting Command, ACC - NJ (W15QKN), BUILDING 10 PHIPPS RD, PICATINNY ARSENAL, New Jersey, 07806-5000, United States


REQUEST FOR INFORMATION Assured Supply for Soft Ballistic Material Manufacturing United States Army, Program Executive Office Soldier Program Manager Soldier Personal Protective and Individual Equipment 1.0 Description: The U.S. Army Contracting Command-New Jersey-Emerging Technologies Contracting Center (ACC-NJ-ET), Benet Laboratories, on behalf of the Program Manager Soldier Protective and Individual Equipment (PM SPIE) of the Program Executive Office (PEO) Soldier, Fort Belvoir, VA 22060 is requesting information on current domestic (US/Canada) capable manufacturers for the creation and/or development of domestic infrastructure to support improved Soft Armor Ballistic Insert (SABI) material and for commercial applications as well as those applications required for the US Department of Defense (DoD) needs. The offeror(s) will demonstrate how they can provide specific implementation opportunities and information that contributes towards further development of manufacturing and production technologies and increase the capacity of the domestic critical infrastructure and frameworks needed for production of lighter and higher performing personal protective equipment (PPE). 1.1 NAICS: The appropriate North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) identifiers include: 315990 Apparel Accessories and Other Apparel Manufacturing. 1.2 THIS IS A REQUEST FOR INFORMATION (RFI) ONLY. This RFI is issued solely for information and planning purposes - it does not constitute a Request for Proposal (RFP) or a promise to issue an RFP in the future. This request for information does not commit the Government to contract for any supply or service whatsoever. Further, PM SPIE is not at this time seeking proposals and will not accept unsolicited proposals. Offerors are advised that the U.S. Government will not pay for any information or administrative costs incurred in response to this RFI; all costs associated with responding to this RFI will be solely at the interested partys expense. Not responding to this RFI does not preclude participation in any future RFP, if any are issued. If a solicitation is released, it will be synopsized on the Federal Business Opportunities (FedBizOpps) website. It is the responsibility of the potential offerors to monitor this site for additional information pertaining to this requirement. 2.0 Background 2.1 The Problem: The U.S. Army has a need to deliver lighter and higher performing personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Soldier thereby increasing survivability and mobility. The Army has developed a next generation protection system called Soldier Protection System Torso and Extremity Protection (SPS TEP). The SPS TEP design consists of four (4) components: Modular Scalable Vest (MSV), Ballistic Combat Shirt (BCS), Blast Pelvic Protector (BPP), and Ballistic Battle Belt (B3). The SPS TEP allows Soldiers to tailor load and protection from Tier 1, Concealable, to Tier 4, Full Tactical. Improvements in low weight, high strength soft ballistic armor materials are the key to realizing further weight reduction while maintaining performance levels of Soft Armor Ballistic Inserts (SABI) that protect the Soldier from a full spectrum of threats. Currently the Government has an estimated near term requirement of at least 100,000 SABI and intermediate term requirement for at least 710,000 SABIs that will be produced as part of an anticipated five (5) year procurement contract. Non-U.S. competitors are challenging U.S. leadership in technology and production threatening the ability of U.S. companies to capitalize the market-driving technologies of the future and degrades U.S. national security. The current set of incentives offered by the U.S. can be better aligned to retain domestic capacity and leadership PPE. 2.2 Cost of Inaction: Other nations will innovate faster, capture market share, and obtain the best technology leaving the U.S. without a superior, domestic innovation and manufacturing base. The U.S. may lose the ability to realize the best ideas and capabilities across commercial and defense sectors, becoming dependent on competitor nations. A reliance on foreign-made SABI material with inferior quality and limited availability could increase risk to Soldiers. 2.3 Outcome Sought: DoD seeks to avoid these potentially disastrous outcomes, by assuring that the U.S. is the preferred global source for developing superior technologies faster, more efficiently, and with the highest levels protective properties. The U.S. retains and will leverage its existing infrastructure to advance SABI material development, supporting multiple domestic and DoD ecosystems providing services from material development, to component design, and integration in PPE systems. Domestic development and production capabilities will drive and support these activities, sustaining leadership in translating leading-edge, advanced technology (RD&D) into new products. Critical technology advancements in unique material properties, decreased areal density, improved ballistic performance, and SABI manufacturability will benefit the PPE by enabling products that are differentiated from foreign competitors by their increased performance and weight savings. Thus, DoD requirements can provide direct market incentives for assured products that U.S. commercial partners are uniquely positioned to provide. 3. DoD Actions and Requests: DoD recognizes the need to proactively engage with industry to make these efforts successful in delivering SABI technologies and providing value to the industrial base. DoD is executing a plan to provide SABI leadership now and into the future with a whole-of-government effort. PM SPIE is requesting information on behalf of the DoD on how to achieve the above goals most effectively. Offerors are encouraged to provide their perspective, input, and ideas for the structure and sustainability of their manufacturing capability, from RD&D to production, ensuring DoD access to the capabilities it needs from domestic sources while providing value to industry through market-differentiating advantages. Sections below provide details of the response content and structure. 4. Technical approach: The offeror will provide an outline of the technical approach and describe capacity that could be made available immediately, 1-2 years, and through scalability over the next 3-5 years along with the associated Rough Order of Magnitude (ROM) unit cost of the material in terms of cost per pound at the volumes proposed. Provide justification for how this approach meets the national innovation and DoD requirements for long term, economically viable, and assured SABI material supply across commodity and advanced specialized technologies. The business case should consider acquisition or access costs, capacity reservations or other purchase guarantees, annual operation and support costs, ownership, foreign ownership, control or influence (FOCI) concerns, support for low volume/high mix production, and the ability of the business to address US innovation and DoD special requirements and/or the diversity of its requirements. 5. Technical Objectives: In order to realize a significant SABI improvement, the following factor performance objectives have been developed. A description of an offerors current values and suggestions for further improvement over the values listed in the table below, based on state-of-the-art materials, should be proposed. Material developed will be tested as SABI shoot packs to assess performance. Factor - Areal Density (nonconsolidated) Threshold - 0.75 lbs/ft2 Objective- 0.65 lbs/ft2 Factor- 9-mm, 124-gr Full Metal Jacket Threshold- 1525 ft/s Objective- 1750 ft/s Factor- 17-grain V50 Fragment Simulating Projectiles (FSP) Threshold- 1850 ft/s Objective- 2550 ft/s Factor- Maximum Back Face Deformation Threshold- 44mm Factor- Material Production Capacity Threshold- 500,000 pounds per year Objective- 5 Million pounds per year 6. Cost/Funding Estimates and Methods: Provide a top-level break out of estimated implementation costs and the financial and other business arrangements and incentives necessary to implement capability and sustain viability. Identify recommended type of investments (loans, loan guarantees, purchase commitments, grants and cost sharing needed (e.g., RD&D, production scale-up, engineering costs, equipment purchase costs, and business development costs) that would be required for implementation to include funding from all sources with special consideration for commercial and private sectors.. The business case should consider the commercial viability (e.g., customer base, market position, revenues, and profitability) of resulting property, goods, or capital. Responses should also address the anticipated impacts of increased assurance necessary to differentiate US produced products over less secure alternatives for their existing customer base to include the DoD. Describe any other factors, including policy and regulatory actions, potentially impacting the long-term availability and access to the design, material manufacturing, and SABI production in a US domestic ecosystem. 7. Cost Share: As it is intended that the technology required to meet the estimated outputs provided herein be readily marketable, DoD anticipates that the offeror will contribute funding as cost share if awarded a contractual instrument with the DoD. It is estimated that the offeror would provide 50% cost share to the maximum extent practicable. Estimate the likely cost share of the investment industry. Any government investments and incentives are to position domestic firms to become commercially viable, obtain a market leadership position, and support the limited DoD needs for access and availability. 8.0 Responses 8.1 Interested offerors responses may be up to 10 pages (front and back, 12 point font in Times Roman), and include their basic company identification information, which SABI material(s) they produce domestically, the location where they produce it domestically, who they produce it for (e.g., Commercial,/Law Enforcement, Federal and State government), etc.) and the quantity they produce (e.g., annual output) for each User/application. Respondents may include other information they think pertinent but it should be kept separate from the one page response. Note: Proprietary information, if any, should be minimized and MUST BE CLEARLY MARKED. To aid the Government, please segregate proprietary information. All proprietary information should be marked as such. Responses will be reviewed only by US government personnel and will be held in a confidential manner. 8.2 Offerors are requested to respond to this RFI with a white paper. 8.3 White papers in Microsoft Word compatible or portable document format files are due no later than 25 November 2018, 12:00 EST. Responses shall be limited to 20 pages for Section 2 and submitted via e-mail only to giuseppe.tropiano.civ@mail.mil. 9 Industry Discussions: PM SPIE representatives may or may not choose to meet with potential offerors. Such discussions would only be intended to get further clarification of potential capability to meet the requirements, especially any development and certification risks. 10 Questions: Questions regarding this RFI shall be submitted in writing by e-mail to Giuseppe Tropiano (giuseppe.tropiano.civ@mail.mil). Verbal questions will NOT be accepted. Questions shall NOT contain proprietary or classified information. The Government does not guarantee that questions received after 25 November 2018 will be answered. 11. Summary: This is a RFI only and meant to identify sources that can provide Assured Supply for Soft Armor Ballistic Insert (SABI) Material Manufacturing. The information provided in the RFI is subject to change and is not binding on the Government. DoD has not made a commitment to procure any of the items discussed, and release of this RFI should not be construed as such a commitment or as authorization to incur cost for which reimbursement would be required or sought. All submissions become Government property and will not be returned.

Original Point of Contact

POC Giuseppe Tropiano, Phone: 5182665094

Place of Performance

Link: FBO.gov Permalink
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