ASAP: Inadequate Commercial Crew Funding Risking Unacceptable Safety Compromises

Posted by Doug Messier on January 10, 2013, at 6:45 am

On the same day that NASA and its commercial partners held a press conference to highlight progress in the Commercial Crew Program (CCP), the space agency’s Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel (ASAP) released a report spotlighting worries about chronic Congressional underfunding of the program will lead to decisions that diminish safety standards for the new spacecraft.

“The ASAP is concerned that some will champion an approach that is a current option contained in the Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) agreement. There is risk this optional, orbital flight-test demonstration with a non-NASA crew could yield two standards of safety—one reflecting NASA requirements, and one with a higher risk set of commercial requirements. It also raises questions of who acts as certification authority and what differentiates public from private accountability,” wrote ASAP Chairman Joseph W. Dyer in the report’s cover letter.

In the letter, Dyer says that the Obama Administration’s requests for CCP have been sliced in half each year, a practice that is likely to continue for the $830 million requested for 2013.

Read more: ASAP: Inadequate Commercial Crew Funding Risking Unacceptable Safety Compromises | Parabolic Arc.

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