Environmental Satellites: Polar-orbiting Satellite Acquisition Faces Delays; Decisions Needed on Whether and How to Ensure Climate Data Continuity
GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE WASHINGTON DC
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The National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System NPOESS is a triagency acquisition managed by the Department of Commerce s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NOAA, the Department of Defense DOD, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration NASA which has experienced escalating costs, schedule delays, and technical difficulties. These factors led to a June 2006 decision to restructure the program thereby decreasing its complexity, increasing its estimated cost to 12.5 billion, and delaying the first two satellites by 3 to 5 years. GAO was asked to summarize a report being released today that evaluates progress in restructuring the acquisition, assesses the status of key program components and risks, and assesses the agencies plans for obtaining the data originally planned to be collected by NPOESS sensors, but eliminated by the restructuring.
- Unmanned Spacecraft