Review of Manned Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion Program

B-146759: Published: Feb 28, 1963. Publicly Released: Feb 28, 1963.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

GAO reviewed the Manned Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion Program of the Atomic Energy Commission and the Department of Defense (DOD).

GAO noted that: (1) at the time of termination, the Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion Program (ANP) was still in the research and development stage, with primary emphasis on high performance reactors; (2) although a number of research and development achievements can be credited to this program, at the time of termination an airplane had never been flown on nuclear power nor had a prototype airplane been built; (3) the ANP program was characterized by frequent changes in emphasis and objectives, varying from a research and development program to an accelerated program to develop a weapon system for the Air Force; (4) the ANP program was carried out in competition with other programs for national defense; (5) although it was outside GAO's scope to examine the reasonableness of or justification for the frequent changes in program objectives, GAO does not believe that a research and development effort of the complexity and magnitude of the ANP program can reach its goal in an effective and efficient manner unless a certain degree of stability in objectives is accorded to the program; and (6) during GAO's review it noted various indications that DOD did not furnish sufficient and timely guidance for the ANP program and that program reorientations were not formalized on a timely basis.

Sep 6, 2016

Aug 24, 2016

May 26, 2016

Apr 18, 2016

Mar 24, 2016

Mar 10, 2016

Feb 4, 2016

Sep 29, 2015

Mar 25, 2015

Feb 19, 2015

Looking for more? Browse all our products here