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Request for Information - Canadian science contributions to international planetary exploration and space astronomy missions

This Request For Information (RFI) is for planning purposes only.

The Canadian Space Agency's (CSA) intention is to understand Canadian science community members' participation in proposed and ongoing planetary exploration and space astronomy missions, identifying individuals who are currently serving or have been requested to serve as a Co-Investigator (Co-I) on mission and/or instrument science teams.

A Co-I is a member of the science team who is critical for the conduct of the mission by contributing unique expertise and/or capabilities needed for its successful completion. A Co-I must have a well-defined role in the mission investigation, and serve under the direction of a mission or instrument Principal Investigator (PI). Typical planetary mission Co-I responsibilities may include a role in instrument calibration, data product generation, science requirements validation, science model development, strategic science planning or science operations planning. In return for their commitment to these roles, Co-Is also participate in science analysis activities within the science team as agreed with the mission / instrument PI and according to mission Rules of the Road that define authorship of mission publications and data sharing.

Missions eligible for submission under this RFI must:

  1. be associated with an international planetary exploration or astronomy mission for which CSA does not have an existing agreement for science team participation,
  2. have planetary science or astronomy knowledge objectives that are aligned with CSA Exploration Priorities, Goals and Objectives, and,
  3. comply with the definition of a Project below.

The relevant CSA Space Exploration goal is to 'Gain knowledge about the Solar System and the Universe', particularly:

For the purposes of this RFI, Projects are defined as a scientific investigation using mission data for which a Co-I role is necessary to influence instrument development or science operations planning and decision making, and through which an advance in scientific knowledge can be expected through the production of peer-reviewed scientific publications. The investigation may be based on data analysis, laboratory experiments and instruments, theory, modelling, simulation, and/or analogue activities and field instruments.

This RFI is primarily an invitation for responses from Canadian academia. Responses to this RFI will be an important consideration for CSA strategic planning.

It is not the CSA's intent to publicly disclose any proprietary or confidential information obtained during this RFI. To the full extent that it is protected pursuant to the Access to Information Act, any information identified by a respondent as "Proprietary" or "Confidential" will be kept confidential.

It is emphasized that this RFI is for planning and information purposes only and is not to be construed as a commitment by the Government of Canada to enter into a financial agreement, nor will the Government of Canada pay for information solicited.

The information that CSA is inviting the Respondents to submit can be found in Appendix A – Response Submission Form. Additionally, a Letter of Support from the respective Mission or Instrument PI or authorized Agency official must be included, confirming the Respondent's roles and responsibilities. For the purposes of this RFI, students, post-docs, and support staff associated with the Respondent do not require such an endorsement.

The Response Submission Form and Letter of Support must be submitted in electronic form by emailing it to or by copying it to digital media (e.g., USB key) and delivering it to:

Planetary Missions RFI
Space Exploration Development
Canadian Space Agency
6767 Route de l'Aéroport
Saint-Hubert, Quebec, Canada
J3Y 8Y9

Please note that responses containing information identified by the submitter as "Proprietary" or "Confidential" should be sent by mail to ensure their secure delivery. If sent by email, please ensure that the document file does not exceed 10 MB in size.

The document must be received at the CSA by .

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