[ASA] Gemini Instrument Feasibility Studies & funding opportunity

Australian Gemini Office ausgo at aao.gov.au
Wed Sep 24 09:26:52 AEST 2014

Gemini Observatory is pleased to announce the release of the Gemini 
Instrument Feasibility Studies Request for Proposals.

*Please visit this page 
for full details*.

The Gemini Instrument Feasibilities Studies (GIFS) project is part of a 
program that will provide a number of community-created science-driven 
instrumentation design study reports and presentations to the 
observatory, conforming to a number of desired principles. It is our 
expectation that these studies will contribute to the selected design 
for the next new facility instrument for the Gemini telescopes.

*STAC Principles*: The Science and Technology Advisory Committee 
identified the following principles for feasibility design study in 
their 2012B report: (see 

  * The instrument should be a workhorse instrument, meaning that it has
    broad scientific appeal and enables a wide range of science cases.
  * The proposals should be science driven and include science cases.
    Science cases that provide synergies with new capabilities coming
    online (e.g. LSST, JWST, ALMA, etc) are highly desirable, especially
    including capabilities needed to follow up survey discoveries.
  * The instrument should fit within the technical constraints of the
    Gemini telescopes as they now exist.
  * The expected cost of the instrument shall be capped at a cost that
    is to be determined as part of the process of defining the RfP.
  * The technical risk of the instrument should be modest, i.e. the
    success of the instrument should not depend upon some not-yet-proven
  * The instrument should be highly efficient, maintaining the 8-m
    aperture advantage.
  * Although proposals for all instruments fitting these criteria will be
    fully considered, it is the majority opinion of the STAC that a
    wide-bandwidth moderate-resolution spectrograph is likely to prove
    most compelling.

Gemini intends to award three or more fixed-price GIFS contracts for 
instrument feasibility studies, with the maximum available budget for 
each contract limited to USD 100,000. Our total budget for this activity 
is USD 300,000.

Gemini is looking for science-driven feasibility studies based on a 
facility instrument costing between USD 8,000,000 and USD 12,000,000 to 
design, build, test and commission. The preferred duration for such a 
project is expected to be no more than 6 years.

The RfP is *open worldwide*, and not restricted to the Gemini community. 
The Gemini instrument feasibility study can be awarded to profit or 
non-profit institutions or companies outside of the nations that fund 
the Gemini Observatory's instrumentation program.

*Gemini encourages collaborations and will provide a mechanism for 
groups to find additional partners to form a complete team for this 
work. Thus, groups with some interest in GIFS, but lacking the complete 
expertise needed to complete the work, should still submit a letter of 
intent and use our system to find additional partners for the work. *

*RFP Schedule:*
RfP Issued: 19th September 2014
Bidders Conference: 31st October 2014
Notice of intent to submit proposal due: 17th November 2014
Proposals due: 15th December 2014 at 23:00 Pacific Standard Time

*For full details, please visit this page 

We are looking forward to hearing from you,

The GIFS Project Team

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