Satellites (1 - 10 of 15 items)
High-Risk Series: Progress on Many High-Risk Areas, While Substantial Efforts Needed on Others
GAO-17-317: Published: Feb 15, 2017. Publicly Released: Feb 15, 2017.
Since GAO's last high-risk update, many of the 32 high-risk areas on the 2015 list have shown solid progress. Twenty-three high-risk areas, or two-thirds of all the areas, have met or partially met all five criteria for removal from the High-Risk List; 15 of these areas fully met at least one criterion. Progress has been possible through the concerted efforts of Congress and leadership and staff i...
Environmental Satellites: NOAA Needs to Ensure Its Timelines Are Accurate, Clear, and Fully Documented
GAO-16-767: Published: Sep 8, 2016. Publicly Released: Sep 8, 2016.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) process for updating its flyout charts involves obtaining updated information on the health of operational satellites and schedules for new satellites, having relevant individuals review the updated charts, and obtaining approval from a senior NOAA official to publish the charts. This process is partially documented in a 2011 draft polic...
Defense Weather Satellites: DOD Faces Acquisition Challenges for Addressing Capability Needs
GAO-16-769T: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2016.
GAO found in March 2016 that the Department of Defense (DOD), in conducting a requirements review and Analysis of Alternatives (AOA) from 2012 to 2014, generally performed a thorough review for identifying capability gaps in meteorological and oceanographic data—also referred to as weather data—that needed to be met and determining the operational benefit of satisfying these gaps.In doing so,...
Polar Satellites: NOAA Faces Challenges and Uncertainties that Could Affect the Availability of Critical Weather Data
GAO-16-773T: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2016.
As highlighted in a May 2016 report, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) program has continued to make progress in developing the JPSS-1 satellite for a March 2017 launch. However, the program has experienced technical challenges which have resulted in delays in interim milestones. In addition, NOAA faces the potential for a near-term ga...
Defense Weather Satellites: Analysis of Alternatives Is Useful for Certain Capabilities, but Ineffective Coordination Limited Assessment of Two Critical Capabilities
GAO-16-252R: Published: Mar 10, 2016. Publicly Released: Mar 10, 2016.
The Department of Defense (DOD) conducted an analysis of alternatives (AOA) to identify and compare potential solutions to the department’s need for space-based environmental monitoring (SBEM) capabilities. DOD initiated the AOA in 2012—2 years after the cancellation of the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System, intended to replace DOD’s existing Defense Meteorol...
Environmental Satellites: Launch Delayed; NOAA Faces Key Decisions on Timing of Future Satellites
GAO-16-143T: Published: Dec 10, 2015. Publicly Released: Dec 10, 2015.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) $10.9 billion Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R (GOES-R) program recently delayed the planned launch of the first satellite in the new series from March 2016 to October 2016. Based on its ongoing work, GAO found that the decision to delay the launch was due to poor schedule performance over the last few years (losing mo...
Geostationary Weather Satellites: Launch Date Nears, but Remaining Schedule Risks Need to be Addressed
GAO-15-60: Published: Dec 16, 2014. Publicly Released: Jan 15, 2015.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)'s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R (GOES-R) program has made major progress in developing its first satellite, including completing testing of satellite instruments. However, the program continues to face challenges in the areas of schedule, cost, and functionality. Specifically, the program has continued to experience d...
NOAA's Observing Systems: Additional Steps Needed to Achieve an Integrated, Cost-Effective Portfolio
GAO-15-96: Published: Nov 17, 2014. Publicly Released: Nov 17, 2014.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the Department of Commerce operates 41 ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes observing systems. NOAA's Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and National Ocean Service manage 25 of these observing systems, with management of the remaining 16 systems split among four other NOAA offices. The majority of NOAA's ocean, coastal, and Great Lak...
Environmental Satellites: Focused Attention Needed to Improve Mitigation Strategies for Satellite Coverage Gaps
GAO-13-865T: Published: Sep 19, 2013. Publicly Released: Sep 19, 2013.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has made progress on both the Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) and Geostationary Operational Environment Satellite-R series (GOES-R) programs, but key challenges remain to ensure that potential gaps in satellite data are minimized or mitigated. On the JPSS program, NOAA has made noteworthy progress in using Suomi National Polar-orbiting Par...
Geostationary Weather Satellites: Progress Made, but Weaknesses in Scheduling, Contingency Planning, and Communicating with Users Need to Be Addressed
GAO-13-597: Published: Sep 9, 2013. Publicly Released: Sep 19, 2013.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has completed the design of its Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R (GOES-R) series and made progress in building flight and ground components. While the program reports that it is on track to stay within its $10.9 billion life cycle cost estimate, it has not reported key information on reserve funds to senior management. A...