Air Traffic Control:

Uncertainties and Challenges Face FAA's Advanced Automated System

T-RCED-93-30: Published: Apr 19, 1993. Publicly Released: Apr 19, 1993.

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GAO discussed the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Advanced Automation System (AAS) to modernize the nation's air traffic control system. GAO noted that: (1) schedule and cost problems have increased over the past year and delays in AAS will continue to force FAA to initiate costly interim projects to sustain the current air traffic control system; (2) interim projects have cost $515 million to date, and FAA estimates additional projects may cost another $200 million; (3) factors that have led to schedule delays have included an overly ambitious AAS plan and unrealistic implementation schedules, FAA failure to provide adequate oversight of contractor performance, and unresolved requirement issues for the second segment of AAS; (4) FAA and the contractor have announced initiatives that increase management oversight and establish a structure for resolving requirements; (5) funding needed to fully implement AAS is uncertain due to FAA intentions to restructure the project; and (6) continued support depends on FAA successful demonstration that AAS technical challenges can be met and justification for restructuring and proceeding with AAS.

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