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GAO finds higher SLS cost growth
Posted: Sat, Mar 14, 2020, 8:30 AM ET (1230 GMT)
The cost of NASA's Space Launch System has now exceeded thresholds for congressional notification and action, the agency's inspector general said Tuesday. In a report, the Office of Inspector General concluded that the cost of developing SLS through its first launch had grown by 33% through the end of fiscal year 2019, and at least 43% through launch. That exceeds the 30% threshold that requires a formal "rebaselining" of the program and notification of Congress, which must then reauthorize the program. The report found that NASA masked the size of the cost increase by removing some program elements, like booster and engine work, without revising the cost estimate accordingly. NASA, in a response to the report, said it was working on a reassessment of the schedule for the first SLS mission, now expected to launch no earlier than the middle of 2021, and "will comply with all the applicable reporting requirements."
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