NASA Draft Announcement of Opportunity for the New Frontiers Program Released for Public Review and Comment

The Planetary Science Division (PSD) of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) has released a Draft Announcement of Opportunity (AO) for the New Frontiers Program and invites public comment on the text. The New Frontiers Program conducts Principal Investigator (PI)-led space science investigations in SMD’s planetary programs under a not-to-exceed cost cap for the PI-Managed Mission Cost. At the conclusion of Phase A concept studies, it is planned that one New Frontiers investigation will be selected to continue into subsequent mission phases.

The AO would be the fifth time that the New Frontiers Program solicited mission investigations. To review the New Frontiers 5 (NF5) Draft AO, please visit the NASA Solicitation and Proposal Integrated Review and Evaluation System at, then select “Solicitations” at the top of the page, and on the next NSPIRES page enter “NNH23ZDA006J” in the search box or use this direct link Reading the NF5 Draft AO is not a substitute for reading the final text. Members of the PSD community or other interested parties should read the Draft New Frontiers AO carefully before submitting comments or questions.

The NF5’s time frame for the solicitation is estimated as follows:

Release of Draft AO: January 10, 2023
Comment period closes: March 3, 2023
Release of final AO: November 2023 (target)
Proposals due: April 2024 (target)

NASA has not approved the issuance of the New Frontiers AO, and this email does not obligate NASA to issue the AO and solicit proposals. Any costs incurred by prospective investigators in preparing submissions in response to this call for comments notification or the Draft AO New Frontiers 5 are incurred completely at the submitter’s own risk.

SMD’s Science Office for Mission Assessments (SOMA) hosts the New Frontiers program website that provides further information, including the Draft AO’s Program Library and Question and Answer (Q&A) pages. SOMA will post inquiry responses and related updates at

Comments on the Draft AO will be accepted by email only and are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on March 3, 2023. Please address comments or questions on the Draft AO to the point of contact given below and add “NF5 Draft AO” as the subject line. Responses to individual comments may be posted in the Q&As (Questions and Answers) section of the NF5 Acquisition website. Similar comments may be aggregated and provided with a single response. Anonymity of persons or institutions submitting questions will be preserved.

Questions and comments may be addressed to Dr. Curt Niebur, New Frontiers Program Lead Scientist, Planetary Science Division, Science Mission Directorate, NASA, Washington, DC 20546; Email: [email protected].