Greater Use of Satellite Telecommunications To Link ADP Facilities Could Save Millions

EMD-81-102: Published: Jun 19, 1981. Publicly Released: Jun 19, 1981.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

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

A review was conducted of the Department of Energy's (DOE) planning and acquisition of automatic data processing (ADP) equipment.

During its review, GAO noted that DOE needs to strengthen its ADP acquisition planning procedures to ensure that its computing requirements are met in a cost-effective manner. Several weaknesses were identified in certain aspects of DOE procurement plans to acquire a major scientific computing system for its research and development work. The GAO review showed that DOE has not fully considered using available satellite telecommunication data processing capabilities, a less costly alternative. Although DOE procedures require that written justifications for ADP equipment include information on each of these requirements, the review shows that they were not discussed in the justification submitted by the laboratories involved. There is no evidence that appropriate studies have been performed to evaluate the feasibility of alternative approaches. Satellite communications which provide the requisite speed for rapid data transmission were commercially available. Costs would be lower using these systems rather than using the encumbent service. DOE questioned the present technological feasibility of using this matter. In view of the potential cost benefits of using satellite technology, it is the opinion of GAO that ADP equipment not be completed until all alternatives are fully evaluated and documented. DOE must fully consider satellite technology in meeting its future computing requirements.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Energy should fully consider satellite technology in meeting its future computing requirements.

    Agency Affected: Department of Energy

  2. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Energy should not complete procurement actions to acquire large-scale automatic data processing equipment for the Albuquerque laboratories until all alternatives to meeting computing needs are fully evaluated and documented.

    Agency Affected: Department of Energy

 

Explore the full database of GAO's Open Recommendations »

May 4, 2016

Apr 27, 2016

Feb 3, 2016

Sep 18, 2015

Jun 2, 2015

May 21, 2015

May 15, 2015

May 8, 2015

Apr 28, 2015

Looking for more? Browse all our products here