NINDS 23-009570

Submitted by patelsnv on Thu, 05/18/2023 - 23:23
Post Date/ Solicitation Issue Date
Closing Response Date
Proposed Award Date
Project Title
Helium gas cylinders for the cooldown of the NIH 11.7 T human MRI magnet
Contracting Office
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

Contact Points

Primary Contract Specialist

NAICS Code Number
Industrial Gas Manufacturing
Small Business Size Standard
FPDS Classification Code
Estimated Period of Performance
05/28/2023 - 09/30/2023
Delivery of Goods
BLDG 10 RM B1D728
Set-Aside Status
Full Set Aside
Set-Aside Type
Small Business (SB)
Competition Status
Vendor Name
Vendor Address
Brand Name
Single-Sole Source Determination
Result of the market research showed that there were no other sources available at the time frame to be able to deliver the required helium delivery.
Background/Description of Requirement

The NIH owns an 11.7 T human MRI system that has been delivered, but still needs to be energized. ASG engineers that will come over from Italy to cool and energize this magnet will do an initial cooldown phase using liquid nitrogen (LN2) before switching over to liquid Helium (LHe). This purchase is for the Helium gas (GHe) that will be needed to purge the remaining LN2 at the end of that cooldown phase, and to evacuate the LHe from their dewars during LHe cooldown and magnet ramping. (The LHe purchase is under 75N95023Q00164, LN2 purchase is under 75N95A23F00002.) The GHe needs to be delivered over a period of 2-3 months, to begin in June, depending on the exact schedule set by the ASG engineers. Based on the current schedule we'd need 1,000 cubic feet in the first week of June. Then a shipment of ~3,500 cubic feet (CF), or 12-24 cylinders (depending on their size, see 'Specific Requirements', below), will be required in early July, with (bi)weekly delivery of 1,000-3,500 CF thereafter, for a total volume not to exceed 15,000 CF.

The AMRI section of LFMI/NINDS develops cutting-edge hard- and software to improve Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technology and applies this to advance neuro- and functional imaging of the human brain. One of the avenues of research the lab is pursuing is MR imaging at increased magnetic field strength, which boosts sensitivity and enhances certain tissue contrasts. Typical MRI systems operate using 1-7 Tesla magnets. The NIH purchased an 11.7 Tesla magnet to investigate benefits of this increased field strength for brain imaging in humans.

Contractor will deliver an initial set of ~5 GHe cylinders at the beginning of the project (early June), then at the end of the LN2 cooldown period (tentatively early-July) around 3,500 CF (~12 cylinders). This will be followed by weekly or biweekly deliveries as needed. Any empty cylinders are to be removed during such deliveries. Delivery in type-T (~300 CF), type-K (~250 CF) or type-S (~150 CF) cylinders to the NMRctr loading dock in NIH Building 10. For use of other cylinder types please contact key personnel, below. Since these cylinders will not be used near the magnet, aluminum cylinders are not required but preferred. Purity of the gas should be 99.999% or better.

The contractor shall comply with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C. § 794d), as amended by

the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (P.L. 105-220), August 7, 1998. All tasks for testing of functional and/or technical requirements must include specific testing for Section 508 compliance, and must use NIH approved testing methods and tools.

Interested parties may identify in writing their interest and capability in response to this requirement. Responses to this notice shall contain sufficient information to establish the interested parties’ bona-fide capabilities for fulfilling the requirement and include: unit price, list price, shipping and handling costs, the delivery period after contract award, the prompt payment discount terms, the F.O.B. Point (Destination or Origin), the Dun & Bradstreet Number (DUNS), the Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), and the certification of business size. All offerors must have an active registration in the System for Award Management (SAM)

All responses must be received by closing date and must reference the announcement. Responses may be submitted electronically to the attention of the contract specialist. Fax responses will not be accepted.

All responsible sources may submit a bid, proposal, or quotation which shall be considered by the agency.