PICASSO

The Planetary Instrument Concepts for the Advancement of Solar System Observations (PICASSO) Program supports the development of spacecraft-based instrument systems that show promise for use in future planetary missions. The goal of the program is to conduct planetary and astrobiology science instrument feasibility studies, concept formation, proof of concept instruments, and advanced component technology development (technology readiness levels (TRL) 1 – 3) to the point where they may be proposed in response to the Maturation of Instruments for Solar System Exploration (MatISSE) Program.

PICASSO is now a program with no-due-dates (NoDD). For more information about NoDD in PSD, visit: https://science.nasa.gov/researchers/NoDD

Click here to view the ROSES 2021 call for the PICASSO program.

MatISSE

The Maturation of Instruments for Solar System Exploration (MatISSE) Program supports the advanced development of spacecraft-based instruments that show promise for use in future planetary missions. The entry level Technology Readiness Level for this program has been raised to TRL 4 in order to more clearly differentiate this program from the PICASSO program. The goal of the program is to develop and demonstrate planetary and astrobiology science instruments to the point where they may be proposed in response to future announcements of flight opportunity without additional extensive technology development (approximately technology readiness level (TRL) 6). The proposed instrument must address specific scientific objectives of likely future planetary science missions.

The MatISSE program is NOT soliciting proposals this year.



Astrobiology Science and Technology Instrument Development (ASTID)

Prior to 2013, NASA’s Planetary Science Division had two major instrument development programs: the Planetary Instrument Definition and Development Program (PIDDP) and the Astrobiology Science and Technology for Instrument Development (ASTID) Program. However, the combination of PIDDP and ASTID did not truly constitute an instrument development pipeline, and to completely develop an instrument to the point where it could be proposed for a mission required repeated and costly proposals to both programs. Exacerbating this problem was the lack of a program which explicitly supported the maturation of technologies from TRL 4 to 6—the so-called “valley of death.”

The Planetary Science Division restructured its instrument development programs in 2013 to ease the full development and maturation of instrument technologies across all of the Division’s goals. The “Planetary Instrument Concepts for the Advancement of Solar System Observations Program,” PICASSO, supports the definition and development of instruments TRLs 1 through 3 for all planetary science goals. The “Maturation of Instruments for Solar System Exploration Program,” MatISSE, similarly supports the maturation of instruments TRLs 3 through 6. Together, PICASSO and MatISSE form an integrated pipeline for taking instruments from initial concepts to prototypes able to be proposed for missions.