Sen. Hutchison Demands NASA Release SLS Cost Analysis

Sen. Hutchison Demands NASA Release SLS Cost Analysis

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) called on NASA to release the independent cost analysis of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) choice, which she says the agency was scheduled to receive today.

“I expect this independent assessment will confirm what myself and the NASA technical staff have known for many months — that the SLS plan is financially and technically sound, and that NASA should move forward immediately,” she said.

Hutchison is the top Republican on the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation committee and a key figure in passage of the 2010 NASA Authorization Act that directed NASA to build a new heavy lift launch vehicle, called the SLS in the law. In her statement today, she said Commerce committee staff had been briefed by Booz Allen, which is performing the independent cost analysis, and NASA “has committed to deliver the report to Congress later today.”

Expressing continued concern about the delay in initiating the SLS program, her statement includes a timeline from June 2010 to today that summarizes NASA’s activities on the SLS and the Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) crew capsule that it is intended to launch. The purpose is to send astronauts beyond low Earth orbit. President Obama wants the first destination to be an asteroid by 2025, but the debate over the destination is ongoing.

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