B-171609(2), MAY 12, 1971

B-171609(2): May 12, 1971

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WHILE PROTESTANT'S TECHNICAL PROPOSAL WAS ORIGINALLY GIVEN A HIGHER NUMERICAL RATING THAN THAT OF SUCCESSFUL LOW BIDDER. THIS WAS REVERSED AFTER COMPLETION OF TECHNICAL NEGOTIATIONS. THE AIR FORCE CONSIDERED IN ITS EVALUATION PROTESTANT'S LIST OF 13 REQUIREMENTS AND STILL CONCLUDED THAT HONEYWELL'S PROPOSAL WAS SUPERIOR. TO GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY: THIS IS IN REPLY TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 12. COMPREHENSIVE PERFORMANCE SPECIFICATIONS WERE ISSUED ALLOWING FOR SUBMISSION OF DIFFERENT DESIGN APPROACHES. THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS ALSO SET OUT MANY FACTORS WHICH WOULD BE ASSESSED IN EVALUATING PROPOSALS AND IT WAS GENERALLY PROVIDED THAT THE FOLLOWING ORDER OF IMPORTANCE WOULD GOVERN: 1. YOUR LETTER EXPRESSES THE BELIEF THAT EVEN THOUGH HONEYWELL'S PRICE WAS LOWER THAN THAT PROPOSED BY GENERAL ELECTRIC THE DIFFERENCE WAS SO SLIGHT AS NOT TO OFFSET THE SUBSTANTIAL SUPERIORITY OF YOUR TECHNICAL PROPOSAL.

B-171609(2), MAY 12, 1971

BID PROTEST - EVALUATION FACTORS DECISION DENYING PROTEST BY SECOND LOW BIDDER AGAINST AWARD OF CONTRACT TO HONEYWELL, INC., LOW BIDDER, UNDER AN RFP ISSUED BY THE AIR FORCE FOR THE GROUND SIMULATOR PORTION OF THE UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATOR TRAINING SYSTEM. WHILE PROTESTANT'S TECHNICAL PROPOSAL WAS ORIGINALLY GIVEN A HIGHER NUMERICAL RATING THAN THAT OF SUCCESSFUL LOW BIDDER, THIS WAS REVERSED AFTER COMPLETION OF TECHNICAL NEGOTIATIONS. ALSO, THE AIR FORCE CONSIDERED IN ITS EVALUATION PROTESTANT'S LIST OF 13 REQUIREMENTS AND STILL CONCLUDED THAT HONEYWELL'S PROPOSAL WAS SUPERIOR. THEREFORE, THE PROTEST MUST BE DENIED.

TO GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY:

THIS IS IN REPLY TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 12, 1971, RELATIVE TO THE AIR FORCE DECISION TO AWARD A NEGOTIATED CONTRACT TO HONEYWELL, INC., FOR THE GROUND SIMULATOR PORTION OF THE UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATOR TRAINING SYSTEM.

THE AIR FORCE REQUESTED PROPOSALS FROM FIVE SOURCES TO ACQUIRE A GROUND SIMULATOR TO SUPPORT THE TRAINING OF UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATORS. COMPREHENSIVE PERFORMANCE SPECIFICATIONS WERE ISSUED ALLOWING FOR SUBMISSION OF DIFFERENT DESIGN APPROACHES. THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS ALSO SET OUT MANY FACTORS WHICH WOULD BE ASSESSED IN EVALUATING PROPOSALS AND IT WAS GENERALLY PROVIDED THAT THE FOLLOWING ORDER OF IMPORTANCE WOULD GOVERN:

1. THE ABILITY OF THE GROUND SIMULATOR TO PERFORM THE AIR TRAINING COMMAND'S TRAINING SUPPORT TASKS.

2. DELIVERY OF A FULLY OPERATIONAL AND SUPPORTABLE SYSTEM WITHIN THE ESTABLISHED ACQUISITION SCHEDULE.

3. TOTAL COST TO THE GOVERNMENT.

YOUR LETTER EXPRESSES THE BELIEF THAT EVEN THOUGH HONEYWELL'S PRICE WAS LOWER THAN THAT PROPOSED BY GENERAL ELECTRIC THE DIFFERENCE WAS SO SLIGHT AS NOT TO OFFSET THE SUBSTANTIAL SUPERIORITY OF YOUR TECHNICAL PROPOSAL. ON THOSE FACTS YOU CONTEND THE SELECTION OF HONEYWELL WOULD CONSTITUTE A GROSS DEPARTURE FROM THE SELECTION CRITERIA STATED IN THE SOLICITATION AND THAT WE SHOULD FIND SUCH AN AWARD TO BE IMPROPER. ACCORDINGLY, YOU REQUEST THAT WE RESOLVE THE THRESHOLD QUESTION AS TO YOUR TECHNICAL SUPERIORITY BY INQUIRING INTO WHETHER THE AIR FORCE, THROUGH ITS RATING SYSTEM, RATED YOUR TECHNICAL PROPOSAL SUBSTANTIALLY SUPERIOR TO THAT OF HONEYWELL.

WE HAVE REVIEWED THE ENTIRE RECORD OF THIS PROCUREMENT, INCLUDING EVALUATION REPORTS BY THE SOURCE SELECTION EVALUATION BOARD AND THE SOURCE SELECTION ADVISORY COUNSEL. WHILE AS INITIALLY SUBMITTED YOUR TECHNICAL PROPOSAL WAS GIVEN A HIGHER NUMERICAL RATING THAN THAT OF HONEYWELL, AFTER COMPLETION OF TECHNICAL NEGOTIATIONS THE AIR FORCE UPDATED ITS EVALUATION AND CONCLUDED THAT THE HONEYWELL PROPOSAL, AS REVISED DURING NEGOTIATIONS, MERITED A HIGHER TECHNICAL RATING THAN GENERAL ELECTRIC. THE GENERAL REASONS FOR THIS CONCLUSION WERE REVIEWED AT OUR REQUEST IN AN INDEPENDENT REVIEW BY THE NATIONAL BUREAU OF STANDARDS (NBS). A GENERAL EXPLANATION AS TO RELATIVE TECHNICAL MERITS OF YOUR PROPOSAL AS COMPARED TO HONEYWELL'S IS INCLUDED IN THE NBS REPORT TO THIS OFFICE, A COPY OF WHICH IS ATTACHED AND INCORPORATED HEREIN AS PART OF OUR DECISION. THE REPORT INCLUDES A DISCUSSION OF THE PROTEST BY THE LINK DIVISION OF SINGER- GENERAL PRECISION, INC.; YOUR PROTEST IS DISCUSSED ON THE LAST TWO PAGES OF THE REPORT.

IT IS ALSO NOTED THAT ON MARCH 30, 1971, YOUR COUNSEL PROVIDED OUR OFFICE WITH A PAPER ENTITLED "PRIMARY SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS." THIS PAPER LISTED 13 REQUIREMENTS OF THE AIR FORCE WORK STATEMENT WHICH YOU BELIEVE SHOULD HAVE BEEN CONSIDERED IN THE AIR FORCE EVALUATION OF PROPOSALS. OUR INQUIRY SHOWS THAT IN EVALUATING EACH PROPOSAL THE AIR FORCE DID IN FACT CONSIDER WHETHER EACH OF THE "PRIMARY REQUIREMENTS" WHICH YOU LIST WAS MET AND, NEVERTHELESS, THE AIR FORCE COULD NOT CONCLUDE THAT YOUR TECHNICAL PROPOSAL WAS SUPERIOR TO THAT OF HONEYWELL.

FOR THE REASON STATED, WE SEE NO BASIS FOR CONCLUDING THAT THE AIR FORCE FAILED TO UTILIZE THE CRITERIA SET FORTH IN THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS IN SELECTING THE CONTRACTOR, AND, THEREFORE, YOUR PROTEST IS DENIED.

AS REQUESTED, A COPY OF OUR DECISION IN THIS MATTER TO LINK IS ENCLOSED.

HONORABLE ELMER B. STAATS

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES

GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE

441 G STREET, N.W.

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20548

DEAR MR. STAATS:

ON 12 APRIL, MR. PAUL DEMBLING OF YOUR OFFICE CALLED THE DIRECTOR OF THE CENTER FOR COMPUTER SCIENCES AND TECHNOLOGY TO REQUEST ASSISTANCE IN EVALUATING THE TECHNICAL MERITS OF BID PROTESTS (NO. B171609) BY THE LINK DIVISION OF SINGER-GENERAL PRECISION, INC. AND THE GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY RELATIVE TO THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE'S PROCUREMENT OF AN UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATOR TRAINING SYSTEM. IN RESPONSE TO THIS REQUEST, THREE NBS SENIOR STAFF MEMBERS WERE ASSIGNED TO ASSIST YOUR OFFICE IN RESOLVING THE TECHNICAL ISSUES RELATED TO THE BID PROTESTS. THE FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS OF THE NBS TEAM ARE PROVIDED IN THIS LETTER.

THE AIR FORCE, IN ORDER TO PROVIDE MORE EFFECTIVE TRAINING FOR NAVIGATORS IN THE OPERATIONAL COMMANDS HAS INITIATED A PROGRAM TO DEVELOP AND ACQUIRE A GROUND SIMULATOR TO SUPPORT THE TRAINING OF UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATORS IN THE BASIC SKILLS, KNOWLEDGE AND DISCIPLINE REQUIRED TO OPERATE PRESENT AND FUTURE NAVIGATION EQUIPMENT.

A REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS WAS ISSUED ON APRIL 1, 1970 TOGETHER WITH A COMPREHENSIVE STATEMENT OF WORK ENTITLED "UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATOR TRAINING SYSTEM (UNTS), PHASE I - GROUND SIMULATOR, SYSTEM 683V." PROPOSALS WERE SUBMITTED BY LINK DIVISION OF SINGER-GENERAL PRECISION, INC., GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY, MARINE SYSTEMS CENTER OF HONEYWELL, INC., CONDUCTRON, INC., AND LING-TEMPCO VOUGHT-ELECTRONICS. PRELIMINARY NEGOTIATIONS WERE INITIATED WITH LINK, GENERAL ELECTRIC AND HONEYWELL. DURING THIS PROCESS HONEYWELL REVISED ITS TECHNICAL PROPOSAL.

ON 14 JANUARY 1971, THE LINK DIVISION OF SINGER-GENERAL PRECISION, INC. SUBMITTED TO YOUR OFFICE A BID PROTEST, NO. B-171609, WHICH WAS SUBSEQUENTLY EXPANDED IN FURTHER CORRESPONDENCE. THE LINK DIVISION'S BASIC ARGUMENT WAS THAT IN CERTAIN CRITICAL HIGH COST AREAS THE AIR FORCE STATEMENT OF WORK WAS OPEN TO SEVERAL INTERPRETATIONS. THEY REQUESTED AN INDEPENDENT EXAMINATION TO DETERMINE WHETHER, IN A FEW CRITICAL AREAS, THE HONEYWELL BID WAS BASED ON THE SAME MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS. NBS WAS REQUESTED TO PROVIDE AN INDEPENDENT TECHNICAL EVALUATION OF FOUR AREAS OF QUESTION:

1. TIME REQUIRED FOR RADAR RANGE CHANGE.

2. INDEPENDENCE OF MOVEMENT BY INDIVIDUAL SIMULATED AIRCRAFT.

3. MINIMUM REQUIREMENT FOR RADAR RESOLUTION.

4. STUDENT VERSUS OPERATOR RATIO.

ON 16 APRIL 1971, NBS STAFF MEMBERS WERE BRIEFED AT YOUR OFFICE BY REPRESENTATIVES OF LINK AND HONEYWELL AT WHICH TIME THE GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THEIR RESPECTIVE OFFERINGS WERE REVIEWED. FOLLOWING THIS MEETING, NBS STAFF MEMBERS, ACCOMPANIED BY MR. VINCENT LABELLA OF YOUR OFFICE, VISITED THE AIR FORCE SYSTEMS COMMAND, AERONAUTICAL SYSTEMS DIVISION, WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE. THE TEAM EXAMINED AND COMPARED CONTRACTUAL DOCUMENTS PERTINENT TO THESE FOUR ISSUES AND CONFERRED WITH THE RESPONSIBLE AIR FORCE REPRESENTATIVES TO DETERMINE THE VALIDITY OF THE LINK-SINGER ALLEGATIONS.

1. TIME REQUIRED FOR RADAR RANGE CHANGE.

THE STATEMENT OF WORK STIPULATES "THE DISPLAY SHALL MAINTAIN A REAL TIME PRESENTATION WHEN CHANGING A RANGE SELECTION." LINK HAS STATED THAT THE AIR FORCE HAS TAKEN THE POSITION THAT NO DISCERNABLE DIFFERENCE FROM OPERATIONAL TIME IS THE MEANING OF REAL TIME AND THAT A 0.2 SECOND TIME DELAY WAS MINIMALLY COMPLIANT WITH AIR FORCE REQUIREMENTS. OUR REVIEW HAS ESTABLISHED THAT HONEYWELL HAS PROPOSED A TIME DELAY OF 0.167 SECONDS FOR WORST CASE CONDITIONS WHICH IS LESS THAN THE DELAY PROPOSED BY LINK. THEREFORE, IN THIS AREA WE FEEL THAT FROM AN ENGINEERING POINT OF VIEW THE HONEYWELL PROPOSAL EXCEEDS THE REQUIREMENTS AS REPRESENTED BY LINK.

2. INDEPENDENCE OF MOVEMENT BY INDIVIDUAL SIMULATED AIRCRAFT.

THE STATEMENT OF WORK REQUIRES THAT EACH OF THE 46 STUDENT NAVIGATORS BE ABLE TO MAINTAIN AN INDEPENDENT FLIGHT PATH AS A LEAD NAVIGATOR OVER A MINIMUM GAMING AREA OF 1250 BY 1250 NAUTICAL MILES.

THE HONEYWELL PROPOSAL PROVIDES, IN PERTINENT PART, THAT EACH STUDENT NAVIGATOR CAN MAINTAIN AN INDEPENDENT FLIGHT PATH OVER ANY PORTION OF THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES AND PROVIDES FOR TESTING THIS CAPABILITY BY SIMULATING 46 INDEPENDENT FLIGHT PATHS SIMULTANEOUSLY. THE MATERIAL REVIEWED DID NOT INDICATE THAT HONEYWELL'S PROPOSAL AS NEGOTIATED OFFERED ANY FORM OF CORRIDOR APPROACH WHICH WOULD RESTRICT FREEDOM OF SIMULATED AIRCRAFT MOVEMENT AS HAD BEEN THE CASE IN HONEYWELL'S INITIAL PROPOSAL. WE BELIEVE THAT THE HONEYWELL PROPOSAL EXCEEDS THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE STATEMENT OF WORK, AND MEETS THE DESIRED MAXIMUM AREA COVERAGE.

3. MINIMUM REQUIREMENT FOR RADAR RESOLUTION.

THE STATEMENT OF WORK STIPULATES THAT THE SIMULATOR SHALL PROVIDE RANGE AND AZIMUTH RESOLUTION THE SAME AS THE AN/APQ-122(V)7 RADAR FOR BOTH SHORT AND LONG RANGE FIXING. IN ADDITION IT STATES, "(THE RESOLUTION OF THE AN/APQ-122(V)7 AT RANGES OF 30 NAUTICAL MILES OR LESS IS APPROXIMATELY 150 FEET IN RANGE)."

IN ANSWER TO BIDDER'S QUESTIONS DATED 10 APRIL 1970, THE AIR FORCE CLARIFIED THE REQUIREMENTS FOR RADAR RESOLUTION BY THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT: "THE DIGITAL RADAR LANDMASS SIMULATION SYSTEM RESOLUTION SHALL BE AT LEAST 250 FEET. THE DATA PROVIDED WITH THE DRLM SHALL BE AT LEAST EQUAL TO THE AMOUNT OF DATA CONTAINED IN THE MULTICOLORED TRANSPARENCIES. ANY MEANS OF DATA ENCODING AND ANY DATA SOURCE IS ACCEPTABLE PROVIDED THE AMOUNT OF DETAILED INFORMATION IS AT LEAST THE SAME AS WOULD BE PROVIDED THROUGH DIGITIZING THE MULTICOLORED TRANSPARENCY AND WOULD THEREBY PROVIDE THE SAME LEVEL OF RADAR DISPLAY. IT IS DESIRABLE THAT THE DIGITAL RADAR LANDMASS DATA HAVE THE SAME RESOLUTION AS THE SYSTEM (250 FEET). THE RADAR SCOPE PROVIDED IN THE UNT GROUND SIMULATOR SHALL HAVE IDENTICAL PERFORMANCE CAPABILITIES AS THE SCOPE USED IN THE AIRCRAFT. SINCE THE SCOPE HAS RESOLUTION CAPABILITY OF APPROXIMATELY 150 FEET, IT IS DESIRABLE THAT THE DIGITAL RADAR LANDMASS SYSTEM PROVIDE THE SAME LEVEL OF RESOLUTION CAPABILITY, BUT THE REQUIREMENT IS AT LEAST 250 FEET RESOLUTION."

A FURTHER CLARIFICATION OF RESOLUTION REQUIREMENTS WAS PROVIDED TO BOTH HONEYWELL AND LINK WHICH CLEARLY INDICATED THAT THE SIMULATOR MUST BE CAPABLE OF ACCURATELY DEFINING EACH 250 FOOT INCREMENT WITHIN THE GAMING AREA AND THAT THE DATA STORAGE EQUIPMENT DESIGNED FOR THE SIMULATOR MUST NOT BE BASED ON THE POORER LEVEL OF DETAIL CONTAINED IN CERTAIN PRESENTLY AVAILABLE TRANSPARENCIES BUT MUST BE CAPABLE OF HANDLING AND PROCESSING THE HIGHER (250 FOOT) RESOLUTION DATA EXPECTED TO BE AVAILABLE IN THE FUTURE. IT FURTHER CLARIFIES THE REQUIREMENT THAT THE PROCESSING EQUIPMENT MUST BE CAPABLE OF PROCESSING EACH RESOLUTION ELEMENT ALONG THE LINE SWEEP WHERE THE TOTAL ELEMENTS PER LINE SWEEP IS DETERMINED BY THE RADAR RANGE DIVIDED BY THE RESOLUTION. THE REQUIREMENT FOR RESOLUTION IS REITERATED AT 250 FEET FOR RANGES UP TO 30 NAUTICAL MILES AND 300 FEET AT A RANGE OF 50 NAUTICAL MILES. NEITHER THE STATEMENT OF WORK NOR THE AIR FORCE CLARIFICATION IDENTIFIES THE RANGE RESOLUTION (IN FEET) OF THE AN/APQ-122(V)7 AT THE RANGES OF 100 OR 240 NAUTICAL MILES.

AN EXAMINATION OF THE SPECIFICATION REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AN/APQ 122(V)7 RADAR SET ALSO FAILED TO REVEAL ANY DIRECTLY STATED REQUIREMENTS FOR RANGE RESOLUTION ON THE 100 AND 240 NAUTICAL MILE RANGES, HOWEVER, THE PULSE DURATION, VIDEO BANDWIDTH AND OTHER SPECIFIED CHARACTERISTICS OF THE RADAR INFER A RANGE RESOLUTION ON THE ORDER OF 2000 FEET. THE AIR FORCE CONCURRED IN THIS ASSESSMENT BASED ON THEIR KNOWLEDGE OF THE SPECIFICATIONS FOR THE AN/APQ-122(V)7 RADAR. BASED ON THESE FACTS, WE BELIEVE THAT A REASONABLE ASSESSMENT OF THE REQUIRED SIMULATOR RADAR RANGE RESOLUTION WOULD BE AS FOLLOWS:

RADAR RANGE (N MI) RANGE RESOLUTION (FT)

3-30 250

8 250

50 300

100 2000

240 2000

BOTH LINK AND HONEYWELL PROPOSE SIMULATOR RANGE RESOLUTION PERFORMANCE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ABOVE TABULATION. WE BELIEVE THAT BOTH ARE FULLY IN ACCORD WITH THE AIR FORCE'S EXPRESSED AND IMPLIED REQUIREMENTS WITH RESPECT TO RANGE RESOLUTION. BOTH HAVE INDICATED THAT THEY WOULD BE CAPABLE OF PROCESSING AND PRESENTING DATA FROM A "CHECKERBOARD" DATA BASE AT THE 250 FOOT RESOLUTION FOR RANGES UP TO 30 N MI AND IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE TABULATION SHOWN ABOVE FOR GREATER RANGES.

WITH RESPECT TO THE PROCESSING OF THESE DATA TO GENERATE THE SIMULATED DISPLAY INFORMATION, THERE IS A HIGH DEGREE OF PARALLELISM IN THE TECHNICAL APPROACHES PROPOSED BY BOTH LINK AND HONEYWELL. BOTH CONTEMPLATE THE USE OF SPECIAL PURPOSE, HIGH SPEED, PARALLEL PATH PROCESSORS TO SOLVE A RADAR EQUATION NOT SPECIFICALLY STATED IN THE STATEMENT OF WORK AS NECESSARY TO CONVERT THE DIGITAL INFORMATION IN THE LANDMASS DATA BASE STORAGE TO RADAR DISPLAY INFORMATION FOR THE SIMULATOR. HONEYWELL PROPOSES A MAXIMUM PROCESSING TIME ON THE ORDER OF FOUR OR FIVE MICROSECONDS WITH TASK OVER-LAPPING TO PROVIDE A THROUGHPUT RATE OF 600 NANOSECONDS PER RESOLUTION ELEMENT (E.G., 250 X 250 FEET) AND LINK PROPOSES A MAXIMUM PROCESSING AND THROUGHPUT RATE OF ABOUT 1000 NANOSECONDS FOR EACH ELEMENT.

BOTH BIDDERS PROCESS IN SUCH A WAY AS TO ACCESS ALL OF THE DATA AVAILABLE IN THE DATA BASE WHICH IS PERTINENT TO A GIVEN SIMULATED DISPLAY SITUATION. BOTH WOULD MISS DATA WHICH MIGHT BE SEEN BY THE OPERATIONAL RADAR AT SHORT RANGES ON ACCOUNT OF THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE 150 FOOT RANGE RESOLUTION CAPABILITY OF THE OPERATIONAL RADAR AND THE 250 FOOT RANGE RESOLUTION OF THE DISPLAY DATA BASE. IN PROCESSING THE DATA FOR DISPLAY, LINK TAKES INTO ACCOUNT THE PHENOMENON OF PULSE STRETCHING WHILE HONEYWELL DOES NOT. THIS DETRACTS SLIGHTLY FROM THE REALISM OF THE SIMULATED DATA DISPLAY. IN OUR OPINION, THE SIMULATION OF THIS PHENOMENON REQUIRES ONLY THE ADD-ON OF A SOFTWARE PACKAGE AND SHOULD NOT REPRESENT A MAJOR COST ITEM. LINK HAS RAISED THE QUESTION OF WHETHER HONEYWELL MIGHT BE EMPLOYING COARSER RESOLUTION ELEMENTS (LARGER THAN 250 X 250 FEET) IN THE LANDMASS DATA STORAGE BASE AND INTERPOLATING BETWEEN THESE POINTS TO DEVELOP APPARENTLY HIGHER RESOLUTION DISPLAY DATA. THIS IS NOT THE CASE. THE HONEYWELL PROPOSAL CLEARLY INDICATES THAT THE BASIC LANDMASS REFLECTANCE DATA BASE WILL BE STORED IN 250 X 250 FOOT ELEMENTS. BOTH BIDDERS EMPLOY A FORM OF DATA COMPACTION WHICH REQUIRES THE EQUIVALENT OF INTERPOLATION TO DECOMPACT THE RECORDED ELEVATION INFORMATION IN THE LANDMASS DATA STORAGE BASE.

4. STUDENT VERSUS OPERATOR RATIO.

THE STATEMENT OF WORK STIPULATES THAT THE BIDDER SHALL IDENTIFY THE NUMBERS OF OPERATOR STATIONS AND OPERATORS REQUIRED FOR THE 46 STUDENT SIMULATOR SYSTEM.

BOTH LINK AND HONEYWELL HAVE PROPOSED SYSTEM CONFIGURATIONS IN WHICH A COMPLEX OF FOUR STUDENTS IS HANDLED BY ONE OPERATOR. THE LINK PROPOSAL INCLUDES FACILITIES FOR PERMITTING ONE OPERATOR TO OPTIONALLY CONTROL EIGHT OR TWELVE STUDENTS. HONEYWELL DOES NOT OFFER THIS OPTIONAL CHOICE OF STUDENT OPERATOR RATIOS.

THE AIR FORCE HAS INDICATED THAT SINCE MANNING WOULD BE REQUIRED ON THE 4 TO 1 RATIO FOR EITHER SYSTEM, THE OPTIONAL CAPABILITY TO MODIFY THE STUDENT-OPERATOR RATIO WOULD REPRESENT LITTLE FINANCIAL BENEFIT.

THE APOLLO SYSTEMS DEPARTMENT OF THE GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY WAS ONE OF THE CONTRIBUTING BIDDERS FOR THIS PROCUREMENT AND ON 12 MARCH 1971, SUBMITTED A PROTEST LETTER TO YOUR OFFICE QUESTIONING THE PROPOSED CONTRACT AWARD TO HONEYWELL. THEIR BASIC OBJECTIONS ADDRESS TWO POINTS: 1) THEIR PROPOSAL WAS RATED HIGHER BY THE AIR FORCE THAN HONEYWELL'S INITIAL PROPOSAL, AND 2) THE FINAL PRICE OFFERED BY HONEYWELL WAS NOT SUFFICIENTLY LOWER THAN THE GENERAL ELECTRIC SUBMISSION TO JUSTIFY AN AWARD TO HONEYWELL.

THE GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY'S TECHNICAL PROPOSAL WAS REVIEWED AND IT IS CONCLUDED THAT 1) THE DRLMS STORAGE CAPACITY WAS INADEQUATE AND 2) THIS INADEQUATE STORAGE CAPACITY COUPLED WITH THE PROPOSED RADAR SCAN PROCESSING WILL NOT PROVIDE THE REQUIRED DEGREE OF REAL TIME RADAR PRESENTATION REALISM AS COMPARED TO LINK AND HONEYWELL APPROACH. FOR EXAMPLE, THE ORIGINAL HONEYWELL SYSTEM DESIGN WAS DEEMED DEFICIENT IN SEVERAL AREAS INCLUDING INADEQUATE RESOLUTION AND LIMITATIONS IMPOSED BY THE 2400 BY 80 MILE CORRIDOR CONCEPT OF ON LINE DATA. HOWEVER, DURING THE NEGOTIATION PHASE THE CORRIDOR CONCEPT WAS REPLACED BY A SYSTEM WHEREIN THE ENTIRE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES DATA BASE AT ACCEPTABLE RESOLUTION IS ON LINE TO EACH STUDENT NAVIGATOR. THIS MODIFICATION IN THE HONEYWELL PROPOSAL ESTABLISHED A REVISED HIGHER RATING FOR ITS TECHNICAL EVALUATION THAN FOR THE GENERAL ELECTRIC PROPOSAL.

A REVIEW OF THE DOCUMENTATION PROVIDED BY THE AIR FORCE COUPLED WITH OUR EVALUATION OF THE THREE TECHNICAL PROPOSALS, GAVE US NO INDICATION THAT VARYING OR DIFFERENT FORMAL GUIDANCE HAD BEEN PROVIDED TO THE BIDDERS.

OUR ANALYSIS OF THE AIR FORCE STATEMENT OF WORK AND TECHNICAL PROPOSAL DOCUMENTS INDICATES THAT AN ACCEPTABLE UNDERGRADUATE NAVIGATOR TRAINING SYSTEM CAN BE PROVIDED BY THE MARINE SYSTEMS CENTER OF HONEYWELL, INC.

MY STAFF DID NOT EVALUATE THE FINANCIAL SUBMISSIONS OF COMPETING BIDDERS. AS A RESULT, THIS ANALYSIS DOES NOT ADDRESS THE PROBLEM OF WHETHER FINANCIAL SUBMISSIONS MATCHED PROPOSED SYSTEM DESIGN.

IT WAS A PLEASURE TO PROVIDE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO YOUR OFFICE. PLEASE CONTACT ME IF ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE IS DESIRED ON THE RESOLUTION OF THIS CONTESTED BID SELECTION.

SINCERELY,

DR. L. M. BRANSCOMB

DIRECTOR ..END :