Fully Automated Cell Sorter System (31184-221232/A)

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Tender Notice - Advance Contract Award Notice (ACAN)


Days until closing
4 days 12 hours hence


Publication date
Amendment date
Date closing
2022/08/22 14:00 Eastern Daylight Time (EDT)


Region of delivery
  • National Capital Region
End user entity
National Research Council Canada
Procurement entity
Public Works and Government Services Canada
Tendering procedure
Generally only one firm has been invited to bid
Trade agreement
  • Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement
  • Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA)
  • Canada-Panama Free Trade Agreement
  • Canada-Peru Free Trade Agreement (CPFTA)
  • Canada-UK Trade Continuity Agreement (Canada-UK TCA)
  • Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA)
  • Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP)
  • Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA)
  • World Trade Organization-Agreement on Government Procurement (WTO-AGP)
Reference number
Solicitation number
Non-competitive procurement strategy
Exclusive Rights


Trade Agreement: CETA/WTO-AGP/CPTPP/CFTA/FTAs with Peru/Colombia/Panama/Korea/UK
Tendering Procedures: Generally only one firm has been invited to bid
Non-Competitive Procurement Strategy: Exclusive Rights
Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement: No
Vendor Name and Address: 
Sony Biotechnology, Inc.
1730 N. 1st Street
San Jose California
United States
Nature of Requirements: 

Fully Automated Cell Sorter System

Trotechaud, Amber
Telephone No. - (873) 455-3495 

Advance Contract Award Notice

1.Advance Contract Award Notice (ACAN) 

An ACAN is a public notice indicating to the supplier community that a department or agency intends to award a contract for goods, services or construction to a pre-identified supplier, thereby allowing other suppliers to signal their interest in bidding, by submitting a statement of capabilities. If no supplier submits a statement of capabilities that meets the requirements set out in the ACAN, on or before the closing date stated in the ACAN, the contracting officer may then proceed with the award to the pre-identified supplier. 

2. Definition of Requirement

The National Research Council (NRC) of Canada has a requirement to purchase a Fully Automated Cell Sorter System, to support the needs of interdisciplinary research within multiple projects using a highly variable user-base. The system will support research and development within the Human Health Therapeutics (HHT) Research Centre related to academic, clinical, and industrial activities. 

The System will be used in a biosafety approved environment, which is to be used by a broad range of non-specialist users with limited operational expertise. This will be accomplished by acquiring a system that incorporates disposable microfluidic flow cell and sorting nozzle chips together with a robust, fully automated and traceable cell sorter platform.

The System must include the following:

1. One Cell Sorter;
2. One Fluidics cart;
3. One A2 Class biosafety cabinet with a built-in enclosure compliant with NSF49 biosafety standards including an Aerosol Management System;
4. All accessories including but not limited to start-up reagents, flow cell/ nozzles, cables and power cords to operate the system; 
5. Installation and Training;
6. Related operating software and workstation

3. Criteria for Assessment of the Statement of Capabilities (Minimum Essential Requirements)

Any interested supplier must demonstrate by way of a statement of capabilities that its system meets the following requirements.

1. The System must have three lasers consisting of a violet (405nm @ 120mW or higher), blue (488nm @75mW or higher), and yellow/green (561nm @ 65mW or higher);

2. The System must be field upgradable to add an additional 4th red laser (638nm @100mW or higher); 

3. The System must have 12 free form photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) supporting 5 fluorescence detectors from the 488nm laser and 7 fluorescence detectors from the 405nm laser;

4. The System must use operator exchangeable (remove and replace) and disposable microfluidic chip with integrated flow cell and nozzles; at least 3 different nozzle on chip sizes (70, 100, and 130um);

5. The System must have a wizard-based fully automated system to perform daily flow cell-laser alignments and delay calibrations, drop size and stream calibrations; 

6. The System must use interchangeable nozzles (70, 100, and 130um) that are automatically recognized and calibrated and can be swapped out 3-4 times per day;

7. The System must use automation for instrument performance quality control and sorting run traceability via chip-based bar codes to track date, chip nozzle size, user, and run settings;

8. The System must actively monitor and adjust drop characteristics and break off point during sorting runs; 

9. The System must have software controlled on board sample mixing;

10. The System must have software controlled cell deposition that precisely directs and sorts into the center of receiving tubes or wells;

11. The System must have an integrated temperature regulation system (Peltier) without the need for separate fluidics to maintain desired temperatures throughout the sample sort path (input and sort deposition);

12. The System must accommodate a fourth laser (638nm) to run concurrently with three other lasers violet (405nm), blue (488nm), and yellow/green (561nm); 

13. The System must detect up to 12 fluorescent colors + 2 additional scatter parameters based on a flexible combination of 3-4 lasers together with 12 PMT detectors and filters; 

14. The System must use 3 different nozzle sizes (70um, 100um, and 130um nozzle apertures) allowing user to optimize flow sorting applications to balance between higher pressure faster sorting runs versus lower pressure sorting runs that enhances viable cell recoveries;

15. The System must clear clogs at the nozzle level through software driven settings; 

16. The system must automatically identify the placement of each specific fluidic tank and monitor their respective fluid levels, the flow cells, and the nozzle chips;

17. The System must achieve >98% purity and >80% recovery at a threshold rate of 12,000 events per second using a 70um nozzle at 51kHz;

18. The System must adjust vibration frequencies for the 100um standard nozzle size to modify drop volumes allowing for refinement of sorting speeds in line with user defined acceptable purities;

19. The System must allow the exchange of the sample delivery path (sample inlet lines, flow cell, and nozzle system) in a time-limited fashion (< 30 minutes) by a User for applications where no carry over between experiment to experiment can be tolerated;

20. The System must include 4 way sorting and collection tubes up to 15mL and collection multi-well plates such as 24, 48, 96, and 384 wells;

21. The System must switch between plate and tube sorting options without the need for additional calibration and requiring minimal flow sorting expertise;

22. The System must include a custom biosafety cabinet meeting NSF49 standards and must incorporate a built-in aerosol management system to actively remove aerosols from the sort collection chamber;

23. Due to space limitations, the System and biosafety cabinet must not exceed 55 inches in width;

24. The System must include a workstation specifically configured and approved by the OEM for the operation of the cell sorter.

25. The System must support features such as index sort analysis, dot plot and histogram overlay, and support up to 64 gates (both hierarchical and Boolean), save at least 300 million events per data file or tube to support rare event sorting, and support a threshold event rate of 70,000 events/ sec for a 12x12 matrix;

26. The System software must support Wizard driven start up, shutdown and maintenance procedures, schedule reminders for system maintenance, user logs and template management tools, user selectable fluorochrome compensation options, and 5 or more standard sort modes and custom sort modes to suit different cell sizes and application needs.

4. Applicability of the Trade Agreement(s) to the Procurement

This procurement is subject to the following trade agreements:

a) the Canada Free Trade Agreement (CFTA);
b) the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA);
c)the World Trade Organization - Agreement on Government Procurement (WTO-AGP)
d)the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP);
e) the Canada Chile Free Trade Agreement (CCFTA);
f) the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (CCOFTA)
g) the Canada-Honduras Free Trade Agreement (CHFTA);
h) the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA);
i) the Canada-Panama Free Trade Agreement (CPanFTA);
j) the Canada-Peru Free Trade Agreement (CPFTA);
k) the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA); and
l) the Canada-United Kingdom Trade Continuity Agreement (Canada-UK TCA).

5. Government Contracts Regulations Exception(s)

The following exception to the Government Contracts Regulations is invoked for this procurement:

subsection 6(d) - "only one person is capable of performing the work".

6. Exclusions and/or Limited Tendering Reasons

The following exclusion(s) and/or limited tendering reasons are invoked under the (section of the trade agreement(s) specified):

a)Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA) Article: 513.1(b) (iii); 
b) World Trade Organization - Agreement on Government Procurement        (WTO-AGP)      Under the Revised GPA - Article XIII, 1 (b) (iii);
c) Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement         (CETA)  Article 19.12 (b) (iii);
d) Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific          Partnership 
        (CPTPP)  Article(s): 15.10 , 2 (b) (iii) (s);
e) Canada-Chile Free Trade Agreement (CCFTA) Article(s) Kbis-09             (b),Article Kbis-09 (c);
f) Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement Article(s): 1409 (b) (iii);
g) Canada-Honduras Free Trade Agreement Article(s): 17.11 2 (b)         (iii);
h) Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement Article 14.3, Under the         Revised GPA Article XIII, 1 (b) (iii);
i) Canada-Panama Free Trade Agreement Article(s) 16.10 (b) (iii);
j) Canada-Peru Free Trade Agreement (CPFTA) Article(s1409 (b)         (iii); 
k) Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA) Article(s Article         10.13 (b) (iii); and
l) Canada-United Kingdom Trade Continuity Agreement : refer to CETA         as the provisions of CETA are incorporated by reference into and         made part of this Agreement. (CETA)  Article 19.12 (b) (iii).

7. Ownership of Intellectual Property.

Not Applicable. 

8. The period of the proposed contract or the delivery date(s)

The system should be delivered within 8-10 weeks of contract award.
The proposed Contract is for an Initial period of one (1) year from Delivery and Acceptance.

Canada retains the irrevocable option to extend the period of the Contract by up to two ( 2) additional one (1)-year periods, at Canada’s exclusive discretion. 

9. Set-aside Under the Procurement Strategy for Indigenous Business

Not applicable.

10. Comprehensive Land Claims Agreement(s)

Not Applicable

11. Justification for the Pre-Identified Supplier

This requirement is being negotiated with Sony Biotechnology Inc. as they are the only known supplier capable of providing an Fully Automated Cell Sorter that meets the Minimum Essential Requirements. 

The following exception(s) to the Government Contracts Regulations is invoked for this procurement under subsection 6(d) only one person is capable of performing the work.

12. Name and Address of the Pre-identified Supplier:

Name: Sony Biotechnology Inc.
Address: 1730 North 1st St., 2NW San Jose, CA 95112.

13. Suppliers' right to submit a statement of capabilities

Suppliers who consider themselves fully qualified and available to provide the goods described in the ACAN, may submit a statement of capabilities in writing to the contact person identified in this notice on or before the closing date of this notice. The statement of capabilities must clearly demonstrate how the supplier meets the minimum essential requirements described herein.

14. The Closing Date for a Submission of a Statement of Capabilities.

The closing date and time for accepting statements of capabilities is Augst 22, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. EST.

15. Inquiries and Submission of Statements of Capabilities

Inquiries and statements of capabilities are to be directed to:

Amber Trotechaud

Supply Officer
Scientific, Medical and Photographic Division - PV
Services Innovation Acquisitions Sector (SIAS)
Public Services and Procurement Canada, Acquisitions Program
Government of Canada

Amber.Trotechaud@tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca / Tel: (873) 455-3495

Delivery Date: Above-mentioned

You are hereby notified that the government intends to negotiate with one firm only as identified above. Should you have any questions concerning this requirement, contact the contracting officer identified above.

An Advance Contract Award Notice (ACAN) allows departments and agencies to post a notice, for no less than fifteen (15) calendar days, indicating to the supplier community that it intends to award a good, service or construction contract to a pre-identified contractor. If no other supplier submits, on or before the closing date, a Statement of Capabilities that meets the requirements set out in the ACAN, the contracting authority may then proceed with the award.  However, should a Statement of Capabilities be found to meet the requirements set out in the ACAN, then the contracting authority will proceed to a full tendering process.

Suppliers who consider themselves fully qualified and available to provide the services/goods described herein, may submit a statement of capabilities in writing to the contact person identified in this Notice on or before the closing date of this Notice. The statement of capabilities must clearly demonstrate how the supplier meets the advertised requirements.

The PWGSC file number, the contracting officer's name and the closing date of the ACAN must appear on the outside of the envelope in block letters or, in the case of a facsimile transmission, on the covering page.

The Crown retains the right to negotiate with suppliers on any procurement.

Documents may be submitted in either official language of Canada.

Contact information

Contact name
Trotechaud, Amber
Contact email
Contact phone
(873) 455-3495 ( )
Contact address
L'Esplanade Laurier
140 O'Connor Street,
East Tower, 7th Floor
K1A 0S5
Telephone No.: (873) 455-3495 (    )
Facsimile No.:


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