NIMH20004425 – Sources Sought – High Sensitivity Detector Module

Aug 12, 2020 | Sources Sought

This is a Small Business Sources Sought notice. This is NOT a solicitation for proposals, proposal abstracts, or quotations. The purpose of this notice is to obtain information regarding: (1) the availability and capability of qualified small business sources; (2) whether they are small businesses; HUBZone small businesses; service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses; 8(a) small businesses; veteran-owned small businesses; woman-owned small businesses; or small disadvantaged businesses; and (3) their size classification relative to the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code for the proposed acquisition. Your responses to the information requested will assist the Government in determining the appropriate acquisition method, including whether a set-aside is possible. An organization that is not considered a small business under the applicable NAICS code should not submit a response to this notice.

This notice is issued to help determine the availability of qualified companies technically capable of meeting the Government requirement and to determine the method of acquisition.  It is not to be construed as a commitment by the Government to issue a solicitation or ultimately award a contract.  Responses will not be considered as proposals or quotes.  No award will be made as a result of this notice.  The Government will NOT be responsible for any costs incurred by the respondents to this notice.  This notice is strictly for research and information purposes only.

Background:  NIH’s Hattar lab is interested in dissecting retina-brain neural circuits in response to light. Our work relies heavily on high quality imaging of brain tissue samples. Our existing Nikon confocal microscope is the most important equipment for our research, and we need to get the most up-to-date accessories to yield the best data images. This procurement is for a high-sensitivity GaAsP detector and its matching emission cubes, a lens set, a software for better post-imaging processing and a computer.

Purpose and Objectives: To improve the imaging quality of NIH’s existing Nikon confocal microscope, Hattar lab is purchasing a high-sensitivity GaAsP detector module and its matching emission cube, a lens set, an image processing software and a compatible computer. With these upgrades, its existing confocal microscope can resolve more signals from the same sample and improve our image quality with a much higher speed.

Project requirements: A high sensitivity detector module. matching emission cube, lens set, and a software and a computer

Salient Characteristics:

Item must:

Have GaAsP equivalent detector module:

  • It must have the highest standard of image quality and highest light sensitivity. The GaAsP detector uses gallium arsenide phosphide (GaAsP) in its PMT cathode. This novel technology enables it to achieve higher quantum efficiency than detectors from any other brand. Therefore, GaAsP detector can acquire brighter image with minimal noise and high sensitivity than detectors of any other brand.
  • The detector module must be compatible with hardware and software of our existing Nikon confocal microscope.

Be newly designed emission cubes for 4 channel GaAsP/PMT detector that is compatible with our existing Nikon confocal microscope.

Silicone oil objective must be

  • Able to acquire High resolution Imaging of Thick Specimens
  • Ideal for super-resolution microscopy “N-SIM” “N-STORM”
  • Compatible with our existing Nikon confocal microscope.
  1. NIS-Elements AR Software license + Standalone Bach License must:
  • Use Artificial Intelligence (AI) and deep learning methods to process images.
  • Be compatible with our existing Nikon confocal microscope software.


  • 1x Tunable dual channel GaAsP detector module set
  • 1x Newly designed emission cubes for 4 channel GaAsP/PMT detector
  • 1x Silicone oil objective
  • 1x Additional NIS-Elements AR Software license + Standalone Bach License
  • 1x High end HP workstation with 128GB RAM and Nvidia RTX 5000 (or equivalent).

Anticipated period of performance: No later than 60 days after receipt of order.

Other important considerations: All items fully warrantied for one year. Equipment is expected to be fully functional for greater than 5 years with minor service, as required. Maintenance service after one year may be purchased as an annual contract or on an as needed basis.

Capability statement /information sought.  Respondents must provide clear and convincing documentation of their capability of providing the products specified in this notice including providing information regarding being an authorized provider of the services.

The respondent must also provide their DUNS number, organization name, address, point of contact, and size and type of business (e.g., 8(a), HubZone, etc., pursuant to the applicable NAICS code and any other information that may be helpful in developing or finalizing the acquisition requirements.

One (1) copy of the response is required and must be in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format using 11-point or 12-point font, 8-1/2” x 11” paper size, with 1” top, bottom, left and right margins, and with single or double spacing.

The information submitted must be in an outline format that addresses each of the elements of the project requirement and in the capability statement /information sought paragraphs stated herein. 

The response must include the respondents’ technical and administrative points of contact, including names, titles, addresses, telephone and fax numbers, and e-mail addresses.

All responses to this notice must be submitted electronically to the Contract Specialist.  Facsimile responses are NOT accepted.

The response must be submitted to Michael Horn, at e-mail address .

The response must be received on or before August 22, 2020, 5:00 pm, Eastern Time.

Disclaimer and Important Notes:  This notice does not obligate the Government to award a contract or otherwise pay for the information provided in response. The Government reserves the right to use information provided by respondents for any purpose deemed necessary and legally appropriate. Any organization responding to this notice should ensure that its response is complete and sufficiently detailed to allow the Government to determine the organization’s qualifications to perform the work.

Respondents are advised that the Government is under no obligation to acknowledge receipt of the information received or provide feedback to respondents with respect to any information submitted. After a review of the responses received, a presolicitation synopsis and solicitation may be published in Federal Business Opportunities. However, responses to this notice will not be considered adequate responses to a solicitation.

Confidentiality: No proprietary, classified, confidential, or sensitive information should be included in your response. The Government reserves the right to use any non-proprietary technical information in any resultant solicitation(s).

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