Simulated Space Mission “Launch Vehicle” for
Challenger Learning Center-St. Louis

(note: the Challenger Learning Center is part of the Ferguson-Florissant School District and follows the District’s bid policies set by the School Board of Education)

Proposals must be sealed and delivered by 3pm on Friday, October 15, 2021 to:

Ferguson-Florissant School District
8855 Dunn Road
Hazelwood, MO  63042
attn: Heike Janis for Challenger Learning Center

 Virtual walk-through:
Friday, September 24, 2021 10:00am CST


The Challenger Learning Center-St. Louis, located in Ferguson, Missouri, is seeking proposals for a redesign to the Center’s launch vehicle experience. The project is funded through a grant from the Employee Community Fund of Boeing St. Louis

At the core of Challenger Learning Center’s success in developing students’ 21st century skills and confidence in STEM are its simulated space missions. These programs give students an exciting, immersive experience that transports them out of the classroom and into an alternate reality where they are already successful astronauts, scientists, and engineers. The tone is set for this other-worldly experience when students enter the “launch vehicle”: Even the hard-to-impress middle school crowd gets excited as they walk past flashing red lights, through a brushed metal portal, and into a spaceship. They take their seat, help their Commander with the countdown, and watch themselves launch into space. Once docked, they enter the spacecraft where they collaborate, problem-solve, and persevere to complete mission objectives.

The launch vehicle is always a highlight of a trip to the Challenger Learning Center, but unfortunately, it is not keeping up with students’ advancing expectations for immersive experiences. Students are getting less and less impressed with the CGI rendering of a rocket launch they watch. Seats show signs of the wear that comes from transporting thousands of young astronauts. Students expressed disappointment that nothing moves or shakes. The launch vehicle needs to be updated before it loses its ability to capture students’ imaginations.

Challenger Learning Center has received grant funding to go towards the design, development, purchase, and installation of the new launch vehicle experience. These updates will help students suspend their disbelief and get them excited for a day of working as a STEM professional. When complete, the space will serve over 8,000 kindergarten through 8th-grade students a year. The Challenger Learning Center has access to updated videos and audio, which we envision will run from a computer located in an adjacent storage/av room.


Proposal Requests:

The design and creation of a launch vehicle simulation experience including:

  • 20 vibrating seats (or comparable experience via audio equipment)
  • Wrap-around video
  • Immersive audio
  • Possible new flooring and walls

The project must include all costs, including: design, development, purchase, removal of existing components and installation of the new launch vehicle experience, including audio-visual equipment, lighting, seats, flooring, media production, and design fees.

  • Total cost not to exceed $30,000
  • Virtual walk-through of space will take place on: Friday, September 24, 2021 at 10:00am CST. Registration is required.
  • Sealed bids must be delivered or sent via USPS, UPS, or FedEx and received by Friday, October 15, 2021 at 3:00pm CST

looking for some inspiration? check this out.

Proposals shall be sent to:

Ferguson-Florissant School District
8855 Dunn Road
Hazelwood, MO  63042
attn: Heiki Janis for Challenger Learning Center
for hand deliveries: please note that the Administration Building is open 8am-4pm Monday-Friday

Organizational Overview 

The Challenger Learning Center-St. Louis (CLC) is a non-profit organization that provides simulated space missions and other science education programs for schools, community, corporate and public groups and individuals. It is organized locally through a partnership of the Ferguson-Florissant School District, the Saint Louis Science Center and the Cooperating School Districts. The Ferguson-Florissant School District is the fiscal agent for the organization and dictates policies and procedures as it relates to matters such as competitive bidding.

This request for proposal (RFP) is for the procurement of design, fabrication, purchase and installation of all components for the launch vehicle experience for the Challenger Learning Center located at 205 Brotherton Lane in Ferguson, MO  63135. 

General Assumptions 

  • The contractor shall provide competent, trained, and experienced staff of the highest ethical standards. 
  • The contractor will be responsible for any loss of or damage to Challenger Learning Center or Ferguson-Florissant property due to errors, mistakes, malfeasance or misfeasance of its employees. 
  • The contractor shall provide and maintain appropriate industry standard insurance to include workers compensation coverage for their employees. 
  • The contractor will comply with the most current COVID policy of the Ferguson-Florissant School District 

Proposals must be sealed and delivered to the Challenger Learning Center by 3:00pm CST October 15, 2021

Proposal must include the following: 

  • A narrative of contractor work to be performed that addresses the Scope of Work. 
  • Company’s experience in delivery of the services requested. 
  • Detailed proposal cost included in the Scope of Work table in this RFP. 
  • Minimum of three references, including name, title, company, relationship to reference, telephone number and email address.

Key Decision-Making Criteria 

  • Cost 
  • Experience 
  • Communication skills
  • References