Space Technology Development Program Industrial Capability-Building Contribution: STDP AO2
Announcement of Opportunity
Publication date: June 2, 2014
Application deadline: July 25, 2014
Table of contents
- AO objectives
- Funding Agreement
- Privacy notice statement
- Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
- Appendix A Point-Rated Evaluation Criteria
- Innovation and Market Need (25% of overall score)
- Project Feasibility, Resources and Risk Assessment (25% of overall score)
- Outcomes and Benefits to Canada (50% of overall score)
In the newly issued Canada's Space Policy Framework, the Canadian Government underlines the fact that space yields more commercial opportunities than ever. It is therefore not surprising that "Positioning the Private Sector at the Forefront of Space Activities" has been identified as one of its core principles. The Framework also mentions that the lifeblood of the space industry is innovation, which in turn rests on research and development (R&D). Working with industry, the Government of Canada will encourage opportunities in R&D and innovation by increasing its support for technology development, especially in areas of proven strength such as robotics, optics, satellite communications and space-based radar, as well as in areas of emerging expertise.
It is indeed paramount that the Canadian space industry remain strong, healthy and relevant, and that it have the required readiness to respond to national demand and the necessary competitiveness to secure its fair share of commercial and institutional markets worldwide. Only through innovation and continued investments in R&D can Canada ensure that it has the industrial depth and breadth to remain a valued player in the international arena.
The Space Technology Development Program (STDP) of the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) has the mandate to support the development, sustainment and enhancement of industrial technological capabilities in the space domain that are of strategic importance to Canada. This Announcement of Opportunity (AO) pursues the intent of the STDP's first industrial contribution initiative issued in the fall of 2012 that focused on spacecraft platform technologies: Industrial Capacity-Building Contributions in the Area of Spacecraft Platforms: STDP AO1.
In light of the above, this AO will award non-repayable contributions to support the development of industrial capabilities, which include developing novel concepts, products and/or know-how. It is intended to support the industry's responsiveness to future market demand and the maintenance of its global competitiveness.
This document has been prepared to assist applicants through the application process and it outlines important elements, including mandatory criteria for eligibility, details on eligible projects and the selection process. In the event of any discrepancies between this AO and the individual contribution agreements governing a project(s), the latter document(s) will take precedence.
2. AO Objective
The objective of this AO is as follows:
To support the development of Canadian industrial capabilities in the area of space technologies for the purpose of increasing the commercial potential of Canadian space companies.
3.1 Eligible Recipients
Eligible recipients are limited to for-profit organizations established and operating in Canada.
3.2 Eligible Projects
The CSA's STDP aims to support the strengthening of industrial capabilities (new concepts, products and/or know-how) related to basic R&D of space technologies.
The technology themes eligible under this AO include the following list as mentioned in Canada's Space Policy Framework:
- Satellite communications; and
- Space-based radar.
Also, the following technology themes that were determined through consultation with the Canadian space industry are eligible:
- Spacecraft Platform Technologies;
- Radio Frequency Remote Sensing Technologies;
- High Resolution Detection and Monitoring/Tracking Systems;
- Detector Technologies at the Device and Instrument Levels;
- New Materials for Space Applications;
- Structures & Mechanisms for Space Applications; and
- Software for Ground-Based Systems and Data Analytics for Space Assets.
A project may consist of several activities to attain its final objectives or results. Any logical breakdown or combination of these activities can constitute a funded project. However, purposely breaking down a project into numerous activities or sub-activities to obtain more than the maximum contribution funding is not allowed for what is considered to be one project. Furthermore, even if the maximum funding for one project is not reached, the completion of a funded activity does not automatically guarantee funding of the remaining activities of the project.
3.3 Link to CSA Priorities
This AO focuses on the CSA's priority of building industrial capabilities, meaning those projects that aim to develop new concepts, products and/or know-how. Industrial capability building therefore encompasses all projects aimed at strengthening the industry core capabilities with particular focus on developing its people, knowledge and competitive advantage.
3.4 Link to Program Objectives
This AO supports STDP objectives and contributes to the following objectives of the CSA Class Grant & Contribution (G&C) Program:
- To support the development of technologies relevant to Canada; and/or
- To foster the continuing development of a critical mass of highly qualified people in Canada.
4.1 Application Requirements
Supporting material required from the applicants must include, but is not limited to, the following:
- A detailed description of the project;
- A demonstration that the evaluation criteria and the program objectives are met;
- An elaboration on the funding requested under the program;
- An implementation plan;
- An itemized and balanced budget for the project, indicating projected expenditures, cash flow requirements as well as confirmed and potential revenues and other sources of funds; and
- The names, titles and telephone numbers of persons responsible for managing a project.
4.2 Application Content and Forms
The Application must include the following:
- A completed and typed paper copy of the original application form signed by the Duly Authorized Representative;
- An electronic copy of the application form (identical to the signed paper copy) and full proposal on a standard electronic media (USB flash drive, CD or DVD). In case of discrepancy, the hard copy will take precedence;
- A copy of the document(s) confirming the legal name of the applicant;
- Letters from other funding contributors confirming their contributions (if applicable); and
- Declaration on Confidentiality, Access to Information Act and Privacy Act form signed by the Duly Authorized Representative.
Applications must be received at the CSA no later than noon (12:00 p.m. EDT) on July 25, 2014, at the following address and to the attention of:
Manager, Technology Development
Canadian Space Agency
6767 Route de l'Aéroport
Saint-Hubert, Quebec J3Y 8Y9
Note: Applications sent by email or fax will not be accepted.
Incomplete applications will be rejected.
It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that the application complies with all relevant federal, provincial/territorial and municipal laws.
4.3 Service Standards
The CSA has set service standards for the timely delivery of the acknowledgement of receipt, funding decision and payment processes.
Acknowledgement: The CSA's goal is to acknowledge receipt of proposals within 5 business days of receiving an application package.
Decision: The CSA's goal is to respond to the applicants within 6 weeks of the AO's closing date and to send a contribution agreement for signature within 4 weeks of formal approval of the proposal.
Payment: The CSA's goal is to issue payments within 6 weeks of the successful fulfillment of requirements outlined in the contribution agreement.
Compliance with these service standards is a shared responsibility. The applicant must submit all required documentation in a timely fashion. Service standards for this Announcement of Opportunity may vary from other AOs.
4.4 Contact Information
The questions and answers related to this AO will be posted on the CSA website under the "Frequently Asked Questions" section of this AO. The CSA will respond to questions received before 5:00 p.m. (EDT) on Monday, July 14, 2014, and sent to the following generic email address:
5.1 Selection Process
Applications MUST first meet all of the following screening criteria. Only applications that have passed these screening criteria will be considered further. The screening process will determine if the application:
- Is submitted by an eligible recipient (see Section 3.1);
- Represents an eligible project (see Section 3.2);
- Is linked to at least one of the Program Objectives (see Section 3.4);
- Includes the required documentation and declarations (see Section 4.2);
- Meets the definition of basic R&D (see Section 5.2);
- Meets program funding provisions (see Section 6); and
- Has been completed and signed by the Duly Authorized Representative.
Screened-in applications will then be evaluated against the point-rated criteria (see Section 5.3).
5.2 Basic R&D Definition
Projects supported under this AO MUST comply with the following definition for basic R&D:
"Any pre-commercial technology activities that are carried out to resolve unknowns regarding the feasibility of space concepts or applications in the space sector."
The following due diligence process will be applied to determine whether projects are compliant with this definition. To that end, the proposals must:
- Quantify the technical objectives being sought and must describe how the expected results will be measured;
- Clearly state which technological unknowns are proposed to be answered;
- Clearly state the working hypotheses behind solving the unknowns and describe how plausible it is anticipated to solve these unknowns;
- Demonstrate that the proposed project consists of more than ordinary engineering or current operations; and
- Substantiate the current Technology Readiness Level (TRL) and the proposed level expected to be reached.
R&D activities supported under this AO shall be undertaken in Canada.
5.3 Point-Rated Evaluation Criteria
An evaluation committee will assess screened-in (compliant) applications according to the following criteria:
- Innovation and Market Need (25%)
- 1.1 Degree of Innovation
- 1.2 Market Assessment
- Project Feasibility, Resources and Risk Assessment (25%)
- 2.1 Team Technical Expertise
- 2.2 Project Clarity, Completeness, Feasibility and Risk Assessment
- Outcomes and Benefits to Canada (50%)
- 3.1 Development of Industrial Core Capabilities
- 3.2 Competitive Advantage
- 3.3 Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP)
- 3.4 Path to Commercial Potential
The word limit to support each of the previous criteria and the scoring grid is specified in Appendix A.
5.4 Evaluation Process
An evaluation committee will assess each application based on the evaluation criteria listed in Section 5.3. Committee evaluators will be experts in the field relevant to the applications and may include representatives of other Canadian government departments. An application must receive an overall minimum score of 65% as well as minimum specified thresholds to be considered for funding. Contribution agreements will be offered to the applicants in the final ranking order of the proposals to maximize the use of available funding (see Section 6).
Before a final decision is made, the CSA's Program Manager responsible for this AO may seek input and advice from other organizations, including (but not limited to) federal, provincial, territorial and municipal government agencies and organizations.
The amount of support will be determined according to the total eligible cost of the project, as well as the other sources of funds invested by other stakeholders and the applicant.
5.5 Notification and Announcement
Applicants will be notified in writing of the decision related to their application. Successful applications will be announced on the CSA website.
6.1 Available Funding and Duration
The total funding available under this AO is $10M; $8M allocated for Category A projects and $2M for Category B projects. The two categories of funding are:
- Category A covers proposals for which the CSA's contribution will not exceed $600,000 (over a term of up to 24 months in duration).
- Category B covers proposals for which the CSA's contribution will not exceed $200,000 (over a term of up to 24 months in duration).
The following table explains the total envelope for each category:
|Total envelope||Maximum CSA contribution per proposal||Maximum duration of contribution agreement||Maximum government assistance|
|Category A||$8M||$600K||24 months||75%|
|Category B||$2M||$200K||24 months||75%|
Unused funding from either category will be transferable to the other. The overall number of contributions awarded and their level will depend on the availability of funds.
Approved proposals will be eligible for a total government (federal, provincial/territorial and municipal) assistance of up to 75% of total eligible project costs.
Recipients must identify all sources of funding in their application and confirm that information in a funding agreement if the project is selected for funding. Upon completion of a project, the recipient must also disclose all sources of funding. To determine the amount of its financial support, the CSA will consider the total eligible project cost as well as funding obtained by the recipient from other organizations/sources.
The CSA reserves the right not to accept any proposals or to reduce the amount of the contributions at its entire discretion.
6.2 Eligible Costs
Eligible costs are direct expenses associated with the delivery of the approved project and deemed required to achieve the end results. Expenses will be covered subject to the applicant signing a funding agreement, in the form of a contribution, with the CSA.
Eligible costs are limited to one or a combination of the following categories (see definitions):
- acquisition or rental of equipment;
- consultant services;
- data acquisition;
- laboratory analysis services;
- material and supplies;
- overhead (administrative) costs (not to exceed 15%);
- salaries* and benefits; and
*Only the real salary rates are authorized as admissible costs (Public Works and Government Services Canada rates typically do not apply, as they contain a profit element).
7. Funding Agreement
The CSA and the successful applicants (hereinafter referred to as the Recipients) will sign a Funding Agreement. This represents a condition for any payment made by the CSA with respect to the approved project.
Payments for contribution agreements will be made in accordance with the process and the reporting requirements described in the signed Funding Agreement. Upon notice of a successful application, the CSA will have no liability until a Funding Agreement is signed by both parties. Only eligible costs incurred after the Funding Agreement is signed and indicated in the agreement will be reimbursed.
The Recipient of a Funding Agreement shall keep proper records of all documentation related to the funded project, for the duration of the project and for six (6) years after the completion date of the project, in the event of an Audit. This documentation shall be available upon request.
7.3 Conflict of Interest
In the Funding Agreement, the Recipient will certify that any former public office holder or public servant it employs complies with the provisions of the relevant Conflict of Interest and Post-Employment Code for Public Office Holders and the Value and Ethics Code for the Public Sector respectively.
7.4 Intellectual Property
All intellectual property that arises in the course of the project shall vest in the recipient.
7.5 Performance Measurement
The CSA will ask the recipients to report on the following topics at the end of their projects:
- Intellectual Property (including patents)
- Number of Highly Qualified Personnel supported
- Enhancement of Industrial Core Capabilities
As a courtesy, the CSA would appreciate receiving a copy of publications arising from the work.
8. Privacy Notice Statement
The CSA will comply with federal Access to Information Act and Privacy Act vis-à-vis applications received under this Component. By submitting your personal information, you are consenting to its collection, use and disclosure in accordance with the following Privacy Notice Statement, which explains how the applicant's information will be managed.
Necessary measures have been taken to protect the confidentiality of the information provided by the applicant. This information is collected under the authority of the CSA Class Grant and Contribution Program in order to support the Research, Awareness and Learning in Space Science and Technology – Research Component, and will be used for the evaluation and selection of proposals. Personal information (such as contact information and biographical information) included in the rejected proposals will be stored in a CSA Personal Information Bank for 5 years and then destroyed (Personal Information File no. ASC PPU045). Personal information included in the successful proposals will be kept along with the proposal results for archival purposes. These data are protected under the Privacy Act. According to the Privacy Act, the data linked to an individual and included in the proposal being evaluated can be accessed by the specific concerned individual who has rights with respect to this information. This individual may, upon request, (1) be given access to his/her data and (2) have incorrect information corrected or have a notation attached.
Applicants should note that for all agreements over $25 000, information related to the funding agreement (amount, grant or contribution, name of the recipient and project location) through this component and the purpose of the funding will be made available to the public on the CSA website.
For additional information on privacy matters (before sending your proposal), please contact Danielle Bourgie, Coordinator, Access to Information and Privacy, at the CSA.
9. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
It is the responsibility of the applicants to obtain clarification of the requirements contained herein, if necessary, before submitting an application.
For any questions related to this AO, applicants must use the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions and answers related to this AO will be posted on the CSA website under the "Frequently Asked Questions" section of this AO. The CSA will respond to questions received before 5:00 p.m. (EDT) on Monday, July 14, 2014.
At any point of the process, applicants are invited to share with the CSA their comments or suggestions regarding the AO, the program or the process. Applicants can use the generic web-based Comments and Suggestions Box available at www.asc-csa.gc.ca/eng/funding-programs/grants-and-contributions-snapshot.asp#comments.
Question 1: Are legal fees related to the patent process considered eligible?
Answer 1: No, legal fees related to the patent process are not eligible.
Question 2: The "technology themes" that are listed, are presented using very high-level titles, which makes it difficult to determine whether some particular technologies would fit under one or another of those titles.
Is there any further information available that could help clarify the intent of these theme titles, and released promptly to bidders? It would be a much fairer way of helping us determine whether a proposal to develop our instrument technology meets the intent of the technology theme titles. Is there a CSA document available that explains the "technology themes that were determined through consultation with the Canadian space industry" in more details?
Answer 2: There are no further descriptions available. The high-level theme titles are meant to be broad guidelines only. It is the applicant's responsibility to select which theme title best characterizes the proposed project. Only proposals that do not fit in any of the eligible projects (see section 3.2) will be screened out using the eligible project screening criterion (see section 5.1).
Question 3: Would an automated design optimization tool for space missions qualify under this Announcement of Opportunity call?
Answer 3: Yes.
Question 4: Can you be more specific and provide some examples as to what type of work or activity/projects would qualify under "Data Analytics for Space Assets" theme?
Answer 4: There are no further descriptions available. The high-level theme titles are meant to be broad guidelines only. Note that eligible projects do not include software and application development activities related to Earth Observation data. Specifically related to Earth Observation data, there is a separate CSA program called Earth Observation Applications Development Program (EOADP) that would cover such activities.
Question 5: Regarding eligible projects, under the technology theme Software for Ground-Based Systems and Data Analytics for Space Assets: does space assets include Earth Observation data?
Answer 5: No. Eligible projects do not include software and application development activities related to Earth Observation data. Specifically related to Earth Observation data, there is a separate CSA program called Earth Observation Applications Development Program (EOADP) that would cover such activities.
Question 6: Can the closing the date of this Announcement of Opportunity be extended?
Answer 6: No, the closing date of this Announcement of Opportunity will not be extended.
Question 7: In section 4.2 of the Announcement of Opportunity (AO) it says "Applications must be received at the CSA no later than noon (12:00 pm EDT) on July 25, 2014, at the following address..."
Does this mean that:
- the application must be received by the post office before the stated time and date (i.e. the proof of mailing should bear the date/time stamp prior to 12:00 noon on July 25)? Or
- it has to reach CSA before 12:00 noon, July 25 by mail (Canada Post)? Or
- Can this application be couriered / delivered to the address indicated before the stated date/time?
Answer 7: The application has to reach CSA before 12:00 noon, July 25, 2014. The application can be mailed/couriered/delivered to the address indicated before 12:00 (noon), July 25, 2014. There is no one to receive hand delivered proposals during the weekends. Hand delivered proposals will only be accepted during business hours and before noon (12:00), July 25, 2014.
Question 8: We would like to include a Faculty Member at a Canadian University into our proposed project team as a Consultant. Are University Faculty eligible to provide consulting services to Industry under this Announcement of Opportunity?
Answer 8: Yes.
Question 9: We would like to know if the Team Technical Expertise evaluation criterion will consider the qualifications of consultants when evaluating the proposed project team.
Answer 9: Yes.
Question 10: Can Universities be involved in this AO as either subcontractors, consultants or team mates?
Answer 10: Yes.
Question 11: Can material from foreign countries be included in the work?
Answer 11: Yes. However, R&D activities supported under this AO shall be undertaken in Canada.
Question 12: Can we please have a sample copy of the Contribution Agreement (to better understand payment, terms and conditions, etc.)?
Answer 12: No. The Contribution Agreement will be provided to winning applicants only.
Question 13: Is there a page count limit on the proposal?
Answer 13: No. See word count limit specified in Appendix A of the Announcement of Opportunity.
Question 14: Is the proposal word length 8000 words maximum (excluding the appendices) or can we submit additional sections to support answering non-point rated evaluation criteria (e.g. proving that the project meets the basic R&D definition, etc.) ?
Answer 14: The word limit specified in Appendix A only pertains to the point-rated criteria.
Question 15: Can we include universities in the work?
Answer 15: Universities can be included in the work but are not eligible as recipients of the contribution agreements for this AO (section 3.1).
Question 16: Is it advantageous to include universities from an evaluation standpoint?
Answer 16: Including universities in the work for this AO is neither advantageous nor disadvantageous; the application will be evaluated using the Team Technical Expertise and Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP) criteria.
Question 17: How shall the phrase "Data Analytics for Space Assets" be interpreted? Does it relate to:
- Data analytics pertaining to data coming from satellites for multiple applications, OR
- Data analytics pertaining specifically to space assets (i.e. space situational awareness) OR
Answer 17: Data analytics for this AO pertains specifically to space assets (e.g., space situational awareness, spacecraft health and safety).
Question 18: Is it intended to have the word count from items listed in Section 4.1 included in the Contents described in Appendix A for each section?
Answer 18: No.
Question 19: I realize that the answers are not to be announced until July 14 but that leaves little time to make adjustments depending on the answers to these questions. Would it be possible to provide responses to these questions sooner?
Answer 19: Questions will be answered as they are received and will not be withheld until July 14th.
Question 20: Can a project cover more than one technology themes eligible under this AO?
Answer 20: Yes. Only proposals that do not fit in any of the eligible projects (see section 3.2) will be screened out using the eligible project screening criterion (see section 5.1).
Question 21: Does an eligible project have to propose a new novel technology or can it pertain to the development of a more mature technology and increase of its Technology Readiness Level towards commercialization?
Answer 21: Please see point-rated evaluation criterion 1.1 : Degree of innovation
Question 22: As this is a contribution agreement and not a contract, can we submit the proposal electronically in order to reduce the overhead associated with bidding?
Answer 22: No, applications sent by email or fax will not be accepted. Please see section 4.2 Application Content and Form.
Question 23: Are start-up companies eligible to submit an application? Is there any minimum requirement for financial status of the company?
Answer 23: Yes, eligible recipients can be start-up companies as long as they are for-profit organizations established and operating in Canada. The requirement for Financial Statements of 2 years does not apply for a start-up company; however, all financial statements and the most recent interim results available to date are required in order to demonstrate that the company has the financial stability to incur 25% of the total project costs (refer to section 6.1).
Question 24: Section 4.1 of the AO requires that applicants include "an elaboration on the funding requested under the program". Is this requirement fully met by completing Section 4 and Section 5.2 (if applicable) of the Application Form or is the CSA seeking different / additional information?
Answer 24: The requirement is fully met by completing Section 4 and Section 5.2 (if applicable) of the Application Form.
Question 25: The Answer to Question 10 said that Universities can be involved in this AO as subcontractors. How should the costs of the University subcontractor be factored in the project? Are the costs of the University subcontractor eligible costs?
Answer 25: Universities as subcontractors are eligible. Please consult section 6.2 (consultant services).
Question 26: Are all TRL levels eligible under this AO? In particular can product qualification activities be included as part of the identified costs?
Answer 26: The activities must meet the definition of basic R&D as defined in section 5.2, whatever the TRL level of the technology.
Question 27: Are foreign consultants considered as eligible expenses. If so:
- Is there a limit to the amount of CSA contribution which can go to foreign consulting services?
- Is there a limit to other contribution which can go to foreign consulting services?
Answer 27: The intent of this AO is to provide funding to enhance the R&D capacity of the Canadian industry and, as such, R&D activities supported under this AO shall be undertaken in Canada. Foreign consultants are acceptable as eligible costs as long as reasonable efforts to find Canadian consultants have been demonstrated. Applicants must contribute at least 25% of the total project's eligible costs.
Question 28: We would respectfully like to request an extension to the current delivery date, July 25 2014, of two weeks to provide us sufficient time to develop a compelling response to this opportunity.
Answer 28: The closing date of this Announcement of Opportunity will not be extended.
Question 29: Are not-for-profit organizations able to participate in a subcontract role?
Answer 29: Yes.
Question 30: Can you elaborate on the types of funding agreements that are possible under this AO – for example is a firm fixed price, deliverables based contract possible, or a cost reimbursable with limit of expenditure?
Answer 30: Contributions do not follow the same rules for reimbursement as contracts.
The company shall submit claims for eligible, authorized and incurred costs at regular intervals. CSA shall review claims and reimburse up to 75% of the amount claimed, not exceeding the ceiling amount of the funding agreement. During the project and up to 6 months after the end of the project, an audit may be conducted requiring additional evidence (receipts, salary pay slips) for specific claims (refer to section 7.2).
Question 31: Would you please clarify this statement: "Approved proposals will be eligible for a total government (federal, provincial/territorial and municipal) assistance of up to 75% of total eligible project costs." Does it mean that CSA only covers 75% of total project costs?
Answer 31: The total government (federal, provincial/territorial and municipal) assistance, including CSA's contribution, cannot exceed 75% of total eligible project costs.
Question 32: You have indicated that a sample copy of a contribution agreement will only be provided to winners. We believe that this sets up a potentially unfair competition as it is important in the bid stage to understand the detailed terms that will be part of the agreement. Previous winners of AO's will have an unfair advantage as they will have had access to these terms and conditions. Why would such conditions and knowledge be kept from bidders?
Answer 32: The Contribution Agreement will not be made available at this stage.
Question 33: It has been said in previous clarifications that "eligible projects do not include software and application development activities related to Earth observation data". However, raw Earth observation data coming from the satellite can be used to improve knowledge of satellite platform parameters. Are projects that use Earth observation data for the purpose of satellite parameter identification eligible?
Answer 33: Yes, if the software development activities meets the definition of basic R&D as defined in section 5.2.
Question 34: Can we add graphs, photos and list of references as attachment to the application? If so, how many? Is the list of references counted in the number of words allowed?
Answer 34: Yes, graphs, photos and a list of references can be attached to the application at the discretion of the applicant. The word limit specified in Appendix A only pertains to the point-rated criteria.
Question 35: According to Section 6.2 and its link to "2014-stdp-ao-eligible-costs-definitions", eligible costs include acquisition of equipment, material and supplies. May the Recipient plan on retaining ownership of this equipment, material and supplies following the agreement?
Answer 35: Yes, the recipient will retain ownership of all eligible acquisitions.
Question 36: In configuring the proposal, we note that there is a prescribed form, "2014-stdp-ao2-form-eng.docx", and a request for information that answers Point-Rated Criteria. What is the preferred relationship between these two sets of information? Here are some possible options:
- one file, with all information in the application form
- two files, each with self-contained information with cross-references as appropriate
- one file, with the form at the top of the file, making internal cross-references to following sections in contractor format
- one file, with the form embedded in a company-standard proposal, behind the preliminary pages but followed by proposal pages
- one file, with the form attached as an annex to a company-format proposal
Answer 36: The application form must be fully completed and submitted in electronic as well as hard copy form. The full proposal must be submitted in electronic as well as hard copy form. Two files, each with self-contained information with cross-references as appropriate, are preferred. However, all the other options listed are acceptable.
Question 37: Section 5 of the form requests particular information.
- Would it be acceptable to have summaries of the information in that section of the form, with further details in other parts of the proposal?
- Would it be acceptable to have merely cross-references from Section 5 of the form to information elsewhere?
Answer 37: Please provide the information requested in Section 5 within the application form. Cross-references to other parts of the proposal including further details can be provided as deemed appropriate.
Question 38: Please define "real salary rates".
Answer 38: Please see the "salaries and benefits" definitions (link provided in Section 6.2)
Question 39: Can a company apply for 2 different projects at the same time (either in the same category or different categories of funding, i.e. A and B)?
Answer 39: Yes, two different applications will be required.
Question 40: Further to the response to question 24: Are the Section 4.1 requirements for a Project Description and an Itemized and Balanced Budget satisfied by completing sections 2 and 3 of the Application Form?
Answer 40: No. Section 2 and 3 of the Application Form require only a short summary of the project and budget. A detailed description of the project and a further breakdown of the itemized and balanced budget is required in the full proposal.
Question 41: Would the words inside the tables, block diagrams or images (for example: in Appendix A, Section 2.2, RFP requires inclusion of WBS, WPD, schedules, etc. as these are generally graphical elements) count towards the maximum number of words allowed for each section?
Answer 41: No, they would not count towards the word limit pertaining to the criteria. Please also see questions 14 and 34.
Question 42: Is an extension available for the submission of this grant application?
Answer 42: The closing date of this Announcement of Opportunity will not be extended. Please see questions 6 and 28.
Question 43: Section 7.5 of the RFP (Request For Proposals) seems to indicate that the only mandatory deliverable is a report on IP created, number of highly qualified personnel supported, and enhancement of industrial core capabilities. Can you confirm that these are the only deliverables expected or, if not, indicate what deliverables are expected?
Answer 43: This is not an RFP and there is no procurement for deliverables (goods or services). A contribution agreement, resulting from this Announcement of Opportunity, will require progress reporting on financial, technical, and performance aspects of the work completed to be provided with each claim or as otherwise requested by CSA. As specified in section 7.5, performance metrics will be required at the end of the project as well. Please note that the Contribution Agreement, including the details of the reporting, will only be discussed with winning applicants at the Contribution Agreement preparation stage.
Question 44: Is the CSA open to modifying the funding sharing scheme with industry partner(s), in order to increase the overall project budget, due to a larger contribution of the private partner(s)? (Ex. A $200k CSA budget on a 75/25% sharing scheme leads to an overall budget of 266 k$ (company contribution of 66k$), compared to a 200k$ CSA budget on a 50/50% sharing scheme leads to an overall budget of 400 k$ (company contribution of 200k$), keeping the same CSA financial support.)
Answer 44: The only limit is on CSA's contribution that cannot exceed $200k (Category A project) or $600k (Category B project) and in BOTH cases government assistance cannot account for more than 75% of total project eligible costs. Therefore, a project with maximum CSA funding of $200k with a maximum government assistance of 50% meets the funding requirement.
Question 45: Would you please confirm if the section 4.1 requirements to "demonstrate that the evaluation criteria and the program objectives are met" and to provide "an implementation plan" are satisfied by the detailed responses for Appendix A , Point-Rated Evaluation Criteria? More specifically, with respect to the implementation plan, Appendix A, Section 2.2 – Project Clarity, Completeness, Feasibility and Risk Assessment has evaluation criteria for including a clear and complete implementation plan within the 2.2 submission. One would therefore expect that the 4.1 requirement for an implementation plan is fully satisfied by a detailed submission for Appendix A, section 2.2 .
Answer 45: Yes.
Question 46: Will a proposal to develop state-of-the-art lithium batteries to meet the needs for energy storage in the Canadian Space Program meet the eligibility requirements of the above LOI.
Answer 46: Yes, it will meet the eligibility requirement of section 3.2 (eligible projects) of this announcement of opportunity.
Appendix A Point-Rated Evaluation Criteria
Application must receive an overall minimum score of 65% as well as minimum specified thresholds to be considered for funding. Contribution agreements will be offered to the applicants in the final ranking order of the proposals to maximize the use of available funding (see Section 6). The following point-rated criteria will be evaluated using 4 benchmark statements. Each benchmark statement will receive the following percentage of maximum points according to the following scale:
- Poor: 25%
- Average: 50%
- Good: 75%
- Excellent: 100%
1. Innovation and Market Need (25% of overall score)
Maximum: 20 points
Minimum 10 points (50%)
1.1 Degree of Innovation
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 500 words)
Maximum: 10 points
This criterion evaluates the novelty associated with the new concepts, products and/or know-how to be developed. Innovation can range from sustaining innovations that improve the performance of existing products (but do not create new markets) to disruptive innovations that offer an entirely different value proposition leading to the creation of new markets. This criterion seeks answers to the following:
- What is the degree of innovation being proposed?
Poor: There is little or no innovation being applied to the development of the proposed concepts, products or know-how.
Average: A moderate level of innovation is being applied that will lead to improved performance of existing concepts, products and/or know-how.
Good: A high level of innovation is being applied that will lead to the development of leading-edge concepts, products and/or know-how.
Excellent: The level of innovation is transformative and will lead to the development of new concepts, products and/or know-how for new markets.
1.2 Market Assessment
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 1500 words)
Maximum: 10 points
This criterion evaluates the applicant's understanding of the market needs associated with the proposed technology. It includes a thorough analysis of market demand. Incidentally, this criterion also evaluates whether the proposal addresses the existence and number of competing alternatives on the market. This criterion seeks answers to the following:
- Is the applicant aware of its current market share?
- What are the factors that drive the demand for this technology?
- Who are the customers for this technology?
- Who are the competitors and what alternatives do they offer?
Poor: The applicant is not aware of the current market share pertaining to the technology being developed and the many competitive alternatives already existing on the market. The proposal does not identify the factors that drive demand for this technology or the relevant customers and competitors. The proposal does not present a strategy for competing with the alternatives.
Average: The proposal somewhat identifies the factors that drive demand for this technology, but does not identify the relevant customers and competitors. Some competitive alternatives exist on the market but the proposal provides an incomplete plan for competing with the alternatives. The proposal does not contain any supporting market research/data. The applicant is not clearly aware of the current market share pertaining to the technology to be developed.
Good: The proposal identifies the factors that drive demand for this technology and the relevant customers and competitors, but this is supported by limited market research/data. A limited number of competitive alternatives exist on the market, and the proposal provides a detailed plan for competing with those alternatives. The applicant is aware of the current market share pertaining to the technology to be developed.
Excellent: The proposal clearly identifies the factors that drive demand for this technology and the relevant customers and competitors, and is well supported by market research/data. Very few or no competitive alternatives exist on the market. The applicant is aware of the current market share pertaining to the technology to be developed. The proposal provides a comprehensive plan for competing with any alternatives.
2. Project Feasibility, Resources and Risk Assessment (25% of overall score)
Maximum: 20 points
Minimum: 10 points (50%)
2.1 Team Technical Expertise
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 500 words)Maximum 10 points
This criterion evaluates the combined technical qualifications and experience of the team assembled to carry out the proposed work. Résumés appended to the proposal will be assessed for this criterion.
Poor: The technical team has demonstrated limited or no qualifications and experience with closely related technologies.
Average: The technical team has demonstrated some qualifications and experience with closely related technologies and/or the team has a moderate track record of successfully developing related technologies. Key qualifications are missing to form a comprehensive team.
Good: The technical team has worked actively with closely related technologies and has a track record of successfully developing technologies of comparable scope and complexity. The proposed technical team possesses all the qualifications and experience required to perform the proposed work.
Excellent: The technical team is highly experienced and has a proven track record of successfully developing closely related technologies of comparable scope and complexity. The proposed team possesses all the qualifications and experience required to perform the proposed work.
2.2 Project Clarity, Completeness, Feasibility and Risk Assessment
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 1500 words)Maximum 10 points
This criterion evaluates the completeness and effectiveness of the proposed implementation plan in directing the project to successful completion. This criterion seeks answers to the following:
- Does the proposal include a clear and complete implementation plan consisting of a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), detailed Work Package Descriptions (WPD), schedule, milestones, resource (personnel, facilities, laboratories, field sites, specialized equipment, etc.) availability and allocation as well as risk identification and mitigation?
- Does the proposed implementation plan seem credible and well suited to the project objectives, and does it embody sound methodology and management?
Poor: The implementation plan is poorly defined, incomplete or difficult to understand. There is a high likelihood that the objectives will not be met due to inappropriate methodology, budget, schedule, key risks or availability of resources.
Average: The implementation plan is somewhat defined but lacks details or clarity. Doubts remain regarding the technical methodology of the proposed work or the likelihood that the objectives will be met.
Good: The implementation plan is complete and well defined. The proposed methodology seems adequately suited for the proposed work to be carried out. The expectation that the proposed work will meet the set objectives and be completed on schedule and within budget is credible.
Excellent: The implementation plan is complete, very well defined and coherent. The methodology described is logical and well suited for the proposed work to be carried out. The likelihood that the proposed work will meet the set objectives and be completed on schedule and within budget is high.
3. Outcomes and Benefits to Canada (50% of overall score)
Maximum: 40 points
Minimum: 26 points (65%)
3.1 Development of Industrial Core Capabilities
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 1000 words)Maximum 10 points
This criterion evaluates the potential of increasing industrial capabilities through the advancement of knowledge (know-how) or improvement of the state-of-the-art. It also assesses how the proposed project will contribute to enhancing Canadian industry's ability to meet national space needs. This readiness is reflected by the breadth and depth of the technological domains in which the Canadian industry is active. This criterion seeks answers to the following:
- Will the proposed work lead to the creation of new or enhanced Canadian industrial capabilities?
- Does the new or improved product or services have the potential to lead to more efficient operations, increased production capability and/or cost reduction?
- How will these new or improved capabilities enable the applicant to respond to national space needs (industry's readiness)?
Poor: The proposal does not substantiate a valuable enhancement of Canadian industry's core capabilities that would enable the applicant to respond to space needs.
Average: The proposal provides a limited and/or vague description of the benefits to be gained by the Canadian industry. Industry's readiness to respond to space needs is only somewhat improved by this enhancement to core capabilities.
Good: The proposal clearly substantiates how the enhancement of the applicant's core industrial capabilities will enable it to better respond to space needs.
Excellent: The proposed project would significantly enhance Canadian industry's capabilities and would clearly increase the breadth and/or depth of the Canadian space industrial capabilities as a whole, enabling it to better respond to national space needs.
3.2 Competitive Advantage
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 1000 words)Maximum 10 points
This criterion assesses the merit and potential of the proposed project to positively affect the company's competitive advantage and/or overall market share. It is recognized that an improvement in the company's overall market share (or competitive advantage) can be achieved through creating a new market, penetrating for the first time an existing one and/or increasing one's position in an already accessed market.
Poor: The proposed project is unlikely to impact the company's competitive advantage.
Average: The proposed project is likely to improve the company's competitive advantage and/or overall market share, and a strategy/plan to market has been identified.
Good: The proposed project will improve the company's competitive advantage and/or overall market share. A credible strategy/plan to market is included along with interest of partners/clients and their requirements are known.
Excellent: The proposed project will substantially improve the company's competitive advantage and overall market share. A detailed and credible strategy/plan to market is included along with formally expressed interest of clients (Letters of Intent, MOUs, MOAs, etc.) indicative of potentially significant sales, and the clients' requirements have already been provided.
3.3 Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP)
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 500 words)Maximum 10 points
This criterion evaluates the degree to which this project will help retain and enhance the number of skilled workers as well as their knowledge and expertise through their involvement in this project. This criterion seeks answers to the following:
- Will this project help retain or enhance the number of skilled workers (engineers, scientists and technicians) in the space sector, through their involvement in this activity?
- Does this project have the potential to stimulate the creation of highly skilled jobs in Canada?
Poor: HQP provide minimal value to the project or HQP roles; responsibilities and accountability are poorly defined. Less than 35% of the level of effort is provided by HQP.
Average: HQP provide reasonable value to the project and HQP roles; responsibilities and accountability are reasonably defined. HQP provide between 35% and 50% of the level of effort required to successfully complete the project.
Good: HQP provide high value to the project and HQP roles; responsibilities and accountability are well defined. HQP provide between 50% and 80% of the level of effort required to successfully complete the project.
Excellent: HQP provide very high value to the project and HQP roles; responsibilities and accountability are very well defined. HQP provide over 80% of the level of effort required to successfully complete the project.
3.4 Path to Commercial Potential
(Please limit the proposal pertaining to this criterion to 1500 words)Maximum 10 points
This criterion evaluates the applicant's roadmap for implementing the technology in space. This criterion seeks answers to the following:
- Does the applicant have a post-project strategy, with expected budget and schedule, to further develop the technology in order to achieve commercial potential?
- What future space missions are relevant for this technology?
Poor: No relevant future space missions have been identified for this technology. The proposal provides a poor or no post-project strategy to further develop the technology in order to achieve commercial potential.
Average: The proposal somewhat identifies relevant future space missions targeted for this technology. The proposal provides an average post-project strategy with limited information on budget and schedule to further develop the technology in order to achieve commercial potential.
Good: The proposal identifies relevant future space missions targeted for this technology. The proposal provides a good post-project strategy with information on budget and schedule to further develop the technology in order to achieve commercial potential.
Excellent: The proposal clearly identifies relevant future space missions targeted for this technology. The proposal provides an excellent post-project strategy with clear information on budget and schedule to further develop the technology in order to achieve commercial potential.
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