You may recall that last April, someone on the board posted a link to a video showing a demonstration of a Nephros IWTD at ExFOB 2012-1 (per a post from Oose).
In February 2013, FedBizOpps (fbo.gov) posted a presolicitation notice for an IWPS-2. [Go to their website, click "Advanced Search," check the "presolicitation" box and find and check the Classification Code 46 box down below. This is the third one down, M67854-13-R-1015 ]
Then on April 10, they cancelled it. "At this present time, the Marine Corps believes that it is in its best interest to conduct additional market research on existing IWPS device capabilities in the market place."
Why? It tested quite nicely. After the ExFOB, they sent 100 units to soldiers in the field. Did they not live up to their promise? What happened?
They were thinking of about 150,000 or so delivered over 11 months, and they anticipated five 1-year ordering periods. (Holy cow!) That brings me to another question, and it could be part of the subject of negotations with the army: how many can Nephros deliver in a year? Could it be that the marines had to pull back because Nephros was already committing their full capacity to the army?
I like the last interpretation, but I worry about why the marines thought they should look elsewhere. Any thoughts?
The Marines cannot find a filter that can operate in freezing conditions. Their area of concern is the ability for a filter to maintain it's integrity after it has frozen and thawed out. Until then, they are happy with MSR. Let's hope the army guys don't see it the same way.
Don't think this was posted before. Good luck finding what they're looking for. As I posted before, the MSR device breaks when frozen. It weights 16.7 oz. so I don't see why the Marines would want to stay with the MSR? It doesn't meet at-least 2 of their weight requirements.
Added: Apr 08, 2013 12:54 pm
Please see attached RFI description.
Added: Apr 11, 2013 10:15 am
The Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory (MCWL) seeks to obtain market research information from sources capable of fully satisfying the requirement for a commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) individual water purifiers (IWP) capable of meeting the requirements of NSF Protocol P248. Nephros is one of the manufacturers that comply with the Army Public Health Command (USAPHC) for the NSF P248 Protocol. In-line Filters must fit inside the Hydration Carrier (NSN 8465-01-600-7962) and attach to the hydration pouch (NSN 8465-01-600-7887), the hydration bladder carrier that will be used during patrols. Operating temperatures required are 4o to 49oC water and -33o to 52oC ambient. The filter must continue to work within the stated operational conditions. Resistance to draw is an indicator of the filter's end of service life and that the United States Marines Corps (USMC) desires a mechanism to show filter integrity before this event to assure the user that the produced water is microbiologically safe. An indicator shows that the system is intact; device performance, not just life. Size requirements for the filter including all ancillary components for water purification must not exceed one (1) pound and must be compatible with the USMC Bladder System, NSN 8465-01-600-7956 which will be contained in the Hydration Pouch, NSN 8465-01-600-7887. The in-line filter configuration is sought for ease of use and compatibility with the current hydration system. Flow rate requirements are a minimum of 200 mL/minute for ease of drinkabili
The reason I ask is that the specs on their website say, "Freeze-thaw capable – allows use of ultrafilter post freezing conditions." (Footnote: "Verified by internal testing.") Were the marines trying something else? Or was it not this filter they were trying, so now they want to go back?
SOB! That's it! It's over isnt it.
No Marines no Army, ChemAqua was BS just like Ameriwater and nobody could give a poo about the MDHF...this stock is officially worthless!
Sentiment: Strong Sell
It could be as simple as the Marines as of April 10, now have a qualified unit to order from. The armies version meets the standards and qualifications? This also answers why the marine's information states "conduct market research on existing IWPS devices". Existing is the Nephroes unit.
Colin, on my iPhone (ie painful), I just googled the contract. There are two or three points of contact. One is on the cancellation letter and is a USMC Major responsible for testing. I have to work mon-thurs next week so I'll have little time to dig around. Why don't u call the major and poc on the feb document and ask some questions? You seem like a smart fella. Ask some questions and get back to us.
And I think u answered your own question at the end there. Did u not?? Lol. I hope u r correct but I doubt it. It could b cost, it could b more analysis required before they commit. It could b both.
Colin, I asked Mr Houghton the question of being able to supply filters en masse. His response was that it would be a problem he would like to have. The company has two plants in Italy I believe capable of meeting a significant demand. I'll ask him the next time we talk about specific numbers. As for the marines, that's another great question to ask. I'll b sure to. If the army are happy w the filters, then I can't imagine that it wouldn't meet the requirements for the marines. Good research and excellent questions.
There are some people on this board who have speculated for some years now that there is an active behind the scenes effort to kill the company, be it from Fresnius, or whoever. It may or may not be true at all, but it deserves thought. Is it possible that the Marine Corp was about to award NEPH a major, game changing contract, worth major major dollars, only to have an anonymous company file a grievance for not allowing others to bid?
Just be patient, the ARMY contract is coming, once they get it, Marines are coming up right behind. Nobody else has this filter, NOBODY. The time for profits is coming.
Here's hoping, Oose! I have to think the army wouldn't bother to "commence negotiatons" just because the price was right unless they actually wanted to use the filter, so I conclude that (a) they do want the filter and (b) there is a price they are willing to pay that is reasonably close to what Nephros wants to sell for. With two sides who want to deal, surely they can come to an agreement that will work for both.