SLS Independent Cost Assessment Summary on NASAWatch

SLS Independent Cost Assessment Summary on NASAWatch

NASAWatch has posted the executive summary of the independent cost assessment for the Space Launch System (SLS).

The assessment was performed by Booz Allen. On Friday, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison called on NASA to release the study immediately, but it has not officially been made public. The NASAWatch posting obviously is not an official release, but an effort by someone “in the know” to get the word out. The report begins its “Key Findings” section with this summary:

“In general, the estimates prepared by SLS, MPCV, and 21CGS are consistent with Analysis of Alternative (AoA) level estimates and are reasonable point estimates for budget planning in the near-term 3-5 year budget horizon. They are serviceable in that they represent the basis to build upon for future life-cycle cost estimates of the quality required for long-term budget formulation and the development of program baselines. None of the estimates reviewed by the ICA Team support establishment of long-term budgets or detailed baselines consistent with NPR 7120.5 requirements. They are, however, reasonable AoA estimates appropriate for supporting trade studies and comparative analyses. All three Program estimates assume large, unsubstantiated, future cost efficiencies leading to the impression that they are optimistic. A scenario-based risk assessment, which excludes cost estimating uncertainty and unknown-unknown risks (historically major sources of cost and schedule growth), reveals all three Programs’ reserves are insufficient.”

Acronym check: SLS = Space Launch System, MPCV = Multi-purpose Crew Vehicle (Orion), 21CGS = 21st Century Ground System, ICA = Independent Cost Assessment (the Booz Allen team that did the study).

User Comments has the right (but not the obligation) to monitor the comments and to remove any materials it deems inappropriate.  We do not post comments that include links to other websites since we have no control over that content nor can we verify the security of such links.