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Washington, DC 20548: 

June 23, 2005: 

The Honorable C.W. Bill Young: 
Chairman, Subcommittee on Defense: 
Committee on Appropriations: 
House of Representatives: 

Subject: Defense Acquisitions: Incentives and Pressures That Drive 
Problems Affecting Satellite and Related Acquisitions: 

Dear Mr. Chairman: 

In fiscal year 2006, the Department of Defense (DOD) expects to spend 
more than $23 billion to develop, acquire, and operate satellites and 
other space-related systems. These systems are becoming increasingly 
critical to every facet of military operations as well as the U.S. 
economy and homeland security. Satellite systems collect information on 
the capabilities and intentions of potential adversaries. They enable 
U.S. military forces to be warned of missile attacks and to communicate 
and navigate while avoiding hostile actions. They provide information 
that allows forces to precisely attack targets in ways that minimize 
collateral damage and loss of life. DOD's satellites also enable global 
communications; television broadcasts; weather forecasting; disaster 
planning; navigation of ships, planes, trucks, and cars; and 
synchronization of computers, communications, and electric power grids. 

DOD's introduction of these desirable capabilities over time has not 
come without difficulties. Space system acquisitions have experienced 
problems over the past several decades that have driven up costs by 
hundreds of millions, even billions of dollars, stretched schedules by 
years, and increased performance risks. In some cases, capabilities 
have not been delivered to the warfighter after decades of development. 
As a result of these problems, DOD is now contending with important 
trade-off decisions, such as the following. 

* Whether to keep striving to build its Space-Based Infrared System 
(SBIRS) High as intended or cut back on capabilities. This system is 
intended to replace and upgrade an older generation of missile-warning 
satellites, but its cost has already more than doubled and continues to 
increase, and its schedule has stretched for years. 

* Whether and how much to employ lower orbiting satellites equipped 
with similar capabilities to facilitate missile defense activities. DOD 
had spent two decades on this effort without launching a single 
satellite. Cost and schedule problems forced DOD to rebaseline the 
program several times. Overall affordability of missile defense has 
driven DOD to assess whether to continue with this particular effort as 
well as pursue development of a newer generation of missile-tracking 
satellites. 

* Whether to limit the acquisition of new communication satellites, 
known as the Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellites, in 
favor of developing a newer generation of laser-linked satellites, 
known as the Transformational Satellite Communications System (TSAT). 
The AEHF program is running over cost and schedule, but it incorporates 
more mature technologies. TSAT promises dramatically greater bandwidth 
and processing capabilities and is considered integral to DOD's efforts 
to network all of its weapon systems, but there is much less certainty 
as to how much the system will cost or when it can be delivered because 
critical technologies are not mature. 

* Whether to pursue incremental increases in capability for the Global 
Positioning System or embark on a more expensive program that would 
offer more dramatic capability advances. 

Two years ago, we issued a report to your subcommittee that analyzed 
reports we had previously issued on satellite and other space-related 
programs over the past two decades as well as other studies. Our 2003 
report identified common problems affecting those 
acquisitions.[Footnote 1] Generally, the problems we identified were 
common to DOD weapons acquisitions and were recognized within DOD and 
the space community. In February 2005, you requested that we identify 
underlying incentives and pressures that drive the problems we had 
identified earlier. You also asked that we complete our fieldwork by 
April 2005 to support the subcommittee's decisions on DOD's 
appropriations. 

To respond to your request, we analyzed a wide body of GAO, DOD, and 
industry studies (see enc. III) that discuss acquisition problems and 
underlying incentives and pressures, including our work on best 
practices in weapon system development that we have conducted over the 
past decade, our individual reviews of space system acquisitions and 
crosscutting problems, DOD's independent study of problems affecting 
SBIRS High, past DOD studies of crosscutting problems with space system 
acquisitions, and a more recent DOD joint task force study on the 
acquisition of national security space programs. We also conducted 
interviews with more than 40 individuals (see enc. IV)--including 
experienced space acquisition program managers and program executive 
officials within Air Force Space Command and its Space and Missile 
Systems Center, officials responsible for science and technology (S&T) 
activities that support space, former and current officials within the 
Office of the Secretary of Defense who have specific responsibility for 
space oversight or more general weapon system acquisition policy and 
oversight, and individuals representing various aspects of industry. We 
conducted our review from February 2005 to April 2005 in accordance 
with generally accepted government auditing standards. 

Results in Brief: 

The officials we spoke with for this review cited a set of incentives 
and pressures underlying the space acquisition problems that are 
largely reflective of a lack of an overall investment strategy and a 
corresponding tendency to set start dates for programs before a sound 
business case for them has been established. Specifically, they told us 
that DOD starts more programs than it can afford and rarely prioritizes 
them for funding purposes. Such an approach has cascading effects--from 
creating negative behaviors associated with competing for funds, to 
increasing technology challenges, to creating unanticipated and 
disruptive funding shifts, to stretching out schedules in order to 
accommodate the whole portfolio of space programs. Our previous reports 
have found these pressures are long-standing and common to weapon 
acquisitions, not just space systems. In addition, officials we spoke 
with also cited pressures resulting from having a diverse array of 
officials and organizations involved with the acquisition process, 
tensions between the S&T and acquisition communities as to who is 
better suited to translate technology concepts into reality, pressures 
resulting from short tenures among staff critical to achieving 
acquisition success, and difficulties in overseeing contractors. 

We are not making recommendations in this report because it was not 
within the scope of our work to determine the actions needed to 
redirect the complex set of incentives and pressures affecting space 
programs. However, as we point out, our previous reports have already 
made recommendations--some of which have been implemented--that we 
believe would enable DOD to put space acquisition and other weapons 
programs on a sounder footing. In commenting on our report, DOD pointed 
out that it has recently taken steps such as improving requirements 
setting for all weapons systems and ensuring that decisions to start 
space acquisition programs are based on adequate knowledge. Where 
appropriate in this report, we also identify and present our views on 
solutions being discussed and implemented within DOD. 

Background: 

The majority of satellite acquisition programs that DOD has pursued 
over the past several decades cost more than expected and took longer 
to develop and launch than planned. In our 2003 report, we tied these 
results to four problems. 

1. Requirements for what the satellite needed to do and how well it 
must perform were not adequately defined at the beginning of a program 
or were changed significantly once the program had begun. 

2. Investment practices were weak. For example, potentially more cost- 
effective approaches were not examined and cost estimates were 
optimistic. 

3. Acquisition strategies were poorly executed. For example, 
competition was reduced in order to get a program started quickly, or 
DOD did not adequately oversee contractors. 

4. Technologies were not mature enough to be included in product 
development. 

We also reported that several factors contributed to these problems. 
First, DOD often set dates for delivering capabilities on the basis of 
optimism rather than the knowledge that critical technologies would 
work as intended by those dates. As a result, activities essential to 
understanding and containing costs, maximizing competition among 
contractors, and testing technologies were compressed or not done. 
Second, a diverse array of organizations with competing interests have 
been involved in overall satellite development--from the individual 
military services to testing organizations, contractors, civilian 
agencies, and, in some cases, international partners. This created 
challenges in making tough trade-off decisions. Third, space 
acquisition programs have historically attempted to satisfy all 
requirements in a single step, regardless of the design challenge or 
the immaturity of technologies to achieve the full capability. This 
approach made it difficult to match requirements to available resources 
(in terms of time, money, and technology). We also reported that other 
factors created challenges for the satellite acquisition programs we 
reviewed. These include a shrinking industrial base, a declining space 
workforce, difficulties associated with testing satellites in a 
realistic environment, as well as challenges associated with launching 
satellites. 

DOD's own reviews have identified similar problems as our review and 
expanded on factors that helped drive those problems. Most recently, 
DOD conducted a Defense Science Board/Air Force Scientific Advisory 
Board Joint Task Force study in 2003 (known as the Young Panel report) 
to assess the acquisition of national security space programs and 
develop a road map for reform. The Young Panel found that over time, 
"cost has replaced mission success" as the primary driver in managing 
acquisitions, resulting in excessive technical and schedule risk. 
Specifically, the Young Panel reported that program managers face far 
less scrutiny on program technical performance than they do on 
executing against the cost baseline. The Young Panel said there are a 
number of reasons this is so detrimental--the primary ones being that 
space is unforgiving, thousands of good decisions can be undone by a 
single engineering flaw or workmanship error, and these flaws and 
errors can result in catastrophe. The best way to avoid such problems 
is an unrelenting emphasis on quality. The Young Panel noted that in 
the past, space programs had embraced this approach. Our own reports 
have shown that space programs have not done a good job at executing 
against their cost baselines. For example, costs for one of DOD's most 
important programs, SBIRS High, have more than doubled, and they 
continue to grow. Our studies have also found that cost increases 
within DOD's space programs are often attributable to the fact that 
programs were started without sufficient knowledge as to what resources 
would be needed to achieve success. The Young Panel similarly 
recognized that the best cost performance is achieved when there is an 
emphasis on mission success, which means taking steps to reduce 
technical and schedule risk and making investments that enhance 
quality. 

The Young Panel also found that unrealistic cost estimates had led to 
unrealistic budgets and unexecutable programs. Specifically, the panel 
found that the space acquisition system is strongly biased to produce 
unrealistically low cost estimates throughout the process. During 
program formulation, advocacy tends to dominate and a strong motivation 
exists to minimize program cost estimates. Moreover, proposals from 
competing contractors typically reflected the minimum program content 
and a "price to win." Our own studies as well as other DOD studies have 
found that unrealistic estimates are common among all weapon systems, 
not just space systems, and that low estimates help ensure that the 
program will win support over competing programs and be funded. 

Like our study, the Young Panel also found that undisciplined 
definition of and uncontrolled growth in requirements contributed to 
cost growth and schedule delays and that flawed acquisition strategies 
did so as well. In particular, the Young Panel, as well as a preceding 
review of SBIRS High, found that the adoption of a Total System 
Performance Responsibility policy in the 1990s--which lessened the 
government program management role in favor of a stronger industry 
role--essentially eroded the government's ability to effectively manage 
and oversee space programs and placed too much responsibility on 
industry to define requirements and make tradeoff decisions. Over time, 
this shift as well as other well-intended reforms resulted in declines 
in critical capabilities within the government space workforce, 
particularly for systems engineering. 

DOD has recognized that problems with its space acquisitions need to be 
addressed, and it has taken a range of actions, including shifting away 
from Total System Performance Responsibility to stronger government 
management and oversight of space programs, strengthening cost 
estimating capabilities, adding independent oversight reviews to the 
decision-making process, and adding discipline to requirements setting. 
However, our recent reports and testimonies have recommended that DOD 
also focus on ensuring that acquisition programs not begin until 
adequate knowledge has been accumulated on critical technologies and 
suggested that DOD still needs to guide its overall space portfolio 
with an investment strategy that makes high-level trade-offs before 
beginning programs. Moreover, our reports on all weapon system 
acquisitions have continually pointed out a need to recognize and find 
ways to address the underlying incentives and pressures that drive 
acquisition problems. Without doing so, the impact of changes in 
policies or processes will continue to be limited. 

Incentives and Pressures that Drive Space System Acquisition Problems: 

The officials we spoke with for this review cited a set of incentives 
and pressures underlying the space acquisition problems that are 
largely reflective of a lack of an overall investment strategy and 
priority setting and a corresponding tendency to set start dates for 
programs before a sound business case for them has been established. In 
addition, officials we spoke with also cited pressures resulting from 
having a diverse set of individuals and organizations involved with the 
acquisition process, tensions between the S&T and acquisition 
communities as to who is better suited to translate technology concepts 
into reality, pressures resulting from short tenures among staff key to 
achieving acquisition success, and difficulties in overseeing 
contractors. Our own reviews have identified similar incentives and 
pressures and found them common among weapon system acquisitions. 

Too Many Programs Competing for Funding: 

Many of the officials we spoke with identified pressures and incentives 
that are rooted in the widely held belief that DOD starts more space 
programs than it can afford and rarely prioritizes programs for funding 
purposes before or after starting them. Such an approach has cascading 
effects--from creating negative behaviors associated with competing for 
funds, to increasing technology challenges, to creating unanticipated 
and disruptive funding shifts, to stretching out schedules in order to 
accommodate the whole portfolio of space programs. Figure 1 highlights 
the cycle of pressures when DOD initiates too many programs with too 
little funding. 

Figure 1: Overview of Pressures Resulting from Beginning More Programs 
than DOD Can Afford in the Long Run: 

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

Specifically, officials told us the following. 

* DOD starts more programs than it can afford over the long run, 
forcing programs to underestimate costs and overpromise capability. 
This was attributed to both the Office of the Secretary of Defense and 
the Air Force. The September 11, 2001, terror attacks on the United 
States spurred DOD to attempt to pursue even more satellite programs, 
believing that there was now a greater need for persistent surveillance 
and more robust communication and networking capabilities. 

* When faced with a lower budget, senior executives within Office of 
the Secretary of Defense and the Air Force would rather make across- 
the-board cuts to all space programs than hard decisions as to which 
ones to keep and which ones to cancel or cut back. 

* Because programs are funded annually and priorities have not been 
established, competition for funding continues over time, forcing 
programs to view success as the ability to secure the next installment 
rather than the end goal of delivering capabilities when and as 
promised. 

* More often than not, DOD seeks substantial leaps in capability versus 
incremental leaps. While this approach helps a program to gain support, 
it substantially increases the technical challenge and the level of 
unknowns about a program at the time it is started. 

* Having to continually "sell" a program also creates incentives to 
suppress bad news about the program's status and avoid activities that 
uncover bad news. 

* Launching demonstrators in space is a good way to reduce risks and 
learn about technologies before starting a new acquisition program. But 
because of the high cost of testing technologies in space and the 
overall competition for funding, programs are incentivized not to 
pursue this approach. At the same time, resources outside acquisition 
programs devoted to testing in an operational environment are 
declining. 

* DOD faces resource shortages beyond funding because it starts more 
programs than it can afford. Principally, it does not have a sufficient 
workforce to support space acquisitions or experienced program managers 
to guide them. 

Our previous reports have found that these pressures are long-standing 
and common to weapon acquisitions, not just space acquisitions. The 
competition within DOD to win funding and get approval to start a new 
program is intense, creating strong incentives to make a weapon system 
stand out from existing or alternative systems. If the system does not 
stand out or prevail over alternatives, the program could be 
terminated. Moreover, overall DOD funding constraints put a high 
priority on affordability, making it important for program sponsors to 
provide cost estimates that will fit within the funding constraints. 
Instead of forcing trade-offs, challenging performance requirements-- 
when coupled with other constraints, such as cost or the weight of the 
satellite--can drive product developers to pursue exotic solutions and 
technologies that, in theory, can do it all. 

Moreover, in weapon acquisitions, optimistic cost estimates are 
encouraged because they help gain program approval and attract 
budgetary resources. The consequences of cost growth are not directly 
felt by an individual program because they are "accommodated" through 
delivery delays and quantity changes and by spreading the cost impact 
across many programs. 

We have also reported that the practice of breaching cost and schedule 
objectives to meet difficult requirements would not persist without a 
customer's cooperation. Unlike commercial customers, DOD customers tend 
to be tolerant of cost overruns and delays in order to get a high- 
performance weapon system. Traditionally, customers have been willing 
to wait long periods of time for a capability. They would rather wait 
for the most desirable system to be developed than accept a less 
capable system, thinking that they may not get the opportunity to 
acquire a new or modified system in the future. 

Our recent reports on space and other weapon systems have suggested 
that having a departmentwide investment strategy for weapon systems or 
even space systems would help reduce these pressures. Critical 
components of such a strategy would include identifying overall 
capabilities and how to achieve them, that is, what role space will 
play versus other air-, sea-, and land-based assets; identifying 
priorities for funding; and implementing mechanisms that would enforce 
the strategy. DOD has made revisions to its requirements-setting and 
budgeting processes to strengthen investment planning. However, it is 
unclear as to how these changes will be implemented over time and 
whether they can serve as a foundation for directing S&T and 
acquisition investments. 

To help close knowledge gaps at the onset of programs and shorten 
development time, DOD has adopted an evolutionary development approach-
-that is, pursuing incremental increases in capability versus 
significant leaps. Our examinations of best practices have found that 
this approach can decrease time and cost for development because it 
closes gaps in unknowns. Many of the officials we spoke with believe 
that evolutionary development could be achieved in space by developing 
constellations of larger numbers of smaller, more affordable satellites 
instead of constellations of a few, very large and heavy, complex 
satellites (commonly referred to as "Battlestar Galacticas" in the 
space community). In addition to reducing cost and time associated with 
longer, more challenging programs, this approach could help keep the 
space industrial base more productive. Complementary alternatives 
include developing common rather than unique satellite components, 
cheaper and more responsive launch systems, as well as systems that 
enable DOD to modify and fix satellites in orbit. DOD is pursuing a 
range of S&T efforts along these lines. However, DOD's executive agent 
for space recently testified that these approaches are not technically 
suitable for some of the capabilities DOD is now pursuing, such as 
Space Radar (formerly the Space-Based Radar program) and TSAT. We will 
be undertaking a review to further assess the potential that these 
approaches offer for producing better outcomes as well as potential 
barriers to integrating them into the acquisition process. 

Another solution that has been advocated by the Young Panel and many of 
the officials we spoke with as a way of addressing gaps between 
resources and requirements is management reserves. The Young Panel 
recommended using reserves only to execute the approved program 
baseline and not for new requirements. The officials we spoke with also 
said that management reserves may not be needed as much as they 
currently are if programs do a better job of matching resources to 
requirements before they begin. In addition, several officials noted 
that broader investment strategies should be in place so that DOD can 
afford management reserves. 

Diverse Array of Officials and Organizations Involved with Space 
Systems Add Pressure to Requirements Setting: 

The officials we spoke with widely agreed that the diverse array of 
officials and organizations involved with a space program make it even 
more difficult to pare back and control requirements. As officials we 
spoke with pointed out, space systems may suffer from more requirements 
pressures because there is usually a very broad constituency behind 
each satellite program. The Global Positioning System, for example, not 
only serves military users; it also serves civilians, supports various 
key economic sectors such as transportation and communications, and is 
used by allies. The National Polar-Orbiting Operational Environmental 
Satellite System currently under development will serve military 
weather forecasters as well as civilian forecasters and a broad 
community of scientists studying environmental issues. The Space Radar 
system is expected to play a major role in transforming military as 
well as intelligence-collecting operations and other critical 
governmental functions, such as homeland security. As a result, when 
starting these new systems, space program managers can expect to be 
inundated with competing demands--not just among military users--but 
also among civilian and industry users. 

Our prior reports have identified related pressures with all weapon 
systems. More than 30 organizations within the requirements community 
may have a hand in determining a weapon system's performance 
requirements before a contractor with systems engineering expertise can 
identify the gaps between the requirements and available resources. 
This process means the "doability" of the requirements is often not 
known with certainty until well into product development or until a 
significant percentage of funds planned to develop the system has been 
invested. By this point in time, customers' expectations have been set, 
making it difficult to change requirements if gaps between requirements 
and available resources are found. 

In the past, DOD has not implemented effective mechanisms to help 
mitigate these pressures. In fact, as DOD's own studies have shown that 
these pressures were exacerbated when DOD pursued its Total System 
Performance Responsibility approach because it turned over 
responsibilities related to requirements definition to contractors who 
had less understanding and ability to negotiate requirements, leaving 
program managers in the position of having to continually address 
requirements growth without additional resources. Moreover, the Young 
Panel observed that space program managers have not had the authority 
needed to make trade-offs between requirements and control requirements 
growth. The panel recommended giving program managers this authority, 
accompanied by greater accountability for requirements. 

Developing Technologies within the S&T Environment versus the 
Acquisition Environment: 

An important problem cited in our reports about space system 
acquisition programs is the tendency to take on technology development 
that should occur within the S&T environment. Our reports have stressed 
that the S&T environment is more forgiving and less costly than the 
acquisition environment, which is focused on delivery. This is because 
events such as test failures, new discoveries, and time spent in 
attaining knowledge are considered normal in the S&T environment rather 
than negative. Further, when acquisition programs take on technology 
development, estimates for cost, schedule, and performance are formally 
approved without the benefit of knowing that technologies will work as 
intended. 

Officials we spoke with for this review and previous reviews cited a 
number of reasons that program managers and senior leaders choose to 
have acquisition programs take on technology development activities 
that should occur within the S&T environment. 

* The lengthy development period required for space systems puts 
pressure on program managers to continually develop technologies. There 
is a fear that if these technologies do not reach maturity during this 
time frame, they will be outdated by the time the satellites are ready 
to be launched. 

* Once a program has formally begun, it is easier to secure current and 
future years' funding. 

* Satellites tend to last longer than expected, and they cannot be 
retrieved for upgrades, putting more pressure on programs to push for 
attaining as much technological capability as possible within the 
acquisition program. 

* The acquisition community does not believe that labs in charge of 
developing space technologies adequately understand its needs--in terms 
of capabilities and time frames--and would rather pursue its own goals. 

* Program managers also believe that they would have more control over 
technology development if it was conducted by contractors who answered 
to them rather than to DOD labs. 

* DOD has not had an effective strategy for steering activities within 
the S&T community to ensure that they will eventually fit in with 
acquisition needs. (Note: DOD has recently developed a space S&T 
strategy. We reported on this effort in January 2005.)

Our previous reports have found that many of these views tend to work 
against, rather than for, DOD's ability to achieve timely technology 
advances. When acquisition programs seek to translate advanced concepts 
into reality, they invariably run into problems that require time and 
money to fix. The effects of these problems are often revealed in a 
later stage of development, where they have reverberating effects on 
other aspects of the acquisition program and often require reworking 
design. For example, early technological problems as well as more 
recent system integration issues have severely affected the SBIRS High 
program, among others. 

We also previously found that DOD's new space acquisition policy 
increased acquisition risks by allowing programs to begin without 
having technologies demonstrated in an operational or simulated 
environment or even begun with technologies in even lower stages of 
maturity. 

Many officials believed this policy was necessary because of the unique 
aspects of space acquisition programs, that is, their long length, 
their complexity, and the high cost of operational testing associated 
with space systems. As we have reported in the past, however, DOD has 
found ways to test sensors and other critical technologies on 
experimental satellites in the past, and it has built and launched 
technology demonstrator satellites before starting acquisition 
programs. Moreover, as noted earlier, the length of space and other 
weapon system development can be reduced by pursuing evolutionary 
development. This approach does not prevent DOD from concurrently 
seeking technological advances, but such activity should occur outside 
an acquisition program, rather than inside, to minimize disruptions. 
Last, officials within the Office of the Secretary of Defense did not 
believe that space programs warranted a separate approach than other 
weapon systems. They noted that ships, for example, have unique aspects 
but still fall under the same acquisition policy as other weapon 
systems, which encourages programs to test technologies in an 
operational environment before starting. They also noted that having 
allowed space programs to follow a separate acquisition process has 
effectively reduced direct oversight from the Office of the Secretary 
of Defense. 

DOD has recently revised its space acquisition policy, in part to 
encourage programs to attain more knowledge about technologies before 
starting. It has also taken steps to strengthen its commitment to fully 
fund space programs. However, the revised policy still allows space 
acquisition programs to begin before demonstrating technologies in an 
operational or simulated environment. 

Short Tenures and Workforce Deficiencies May Disrupt Programs as Well 
as DOD's Overall Ability to Implement Reform: 

Short tenures for top leadership and program managers within the Air 
Force and the Office of the Secretary of Defense have lessened the 
sense of accountability for acquisition problems and further encouraged 
a short-term view of success, according to officials we interviewed. 
Turnover makes it difficult for upper-level managers to establish 
effective working relationships with program managers, resulting in 
less trust when divulging problems. 

These concerns have been echoed in prior GAO and DOD reports. DOD has 
taken action over the past decade to lengthen the tenure of program 
managers. However, the Young Panel reported that the average tenure of 
a space program manager is just 2 years and recommended that tenures be 
extended to a minimum of 4 years to minimize disruption to programs. 
Even with this extension, it is likely that programs, which typically 
last longer than 4 years, will continue to experience turnover in 
program management. Many current programs, including SBIRS High, the 
Space Tracking and Surveillance System, Global Positioning System II 
modernization effort, and AEHF, were started in the mid-to late 1990s. 
We have also reported in the past that the short tenures typical of 
program managers make it difficult for them to change the system of 
incentives because other participants can wait out reforms they oppose. 
Moreover, DOD acquisition executives do not necessarily stay in their 
positions long enough to develop the needed long-term perspective or to 
effectively change traditional incentives. 

Officials we spoke with frequently cited other workforce-related 
deficiencies that put pressure on program managers and acquisition 
executives. For example, there are not enough experienced program 
managers to run space programs and or enough experts in software 
engineering--a consequence of starting more programs than DOD can 
afford and effectively manage. Earlier policies of having industry 
assume more responsibility also contributed to this dearth of expertise 
within DOD. As a result, DOD has increasingly relied on outside experts 
to help manage programs. At the same time, a limited number of these 
outside experts are available to provide technical support to DOD's 
various space programs. 

Industry-Related Pressures: 

Officials we spoke with pointed out a number of pressures associated 
with contractors who develop space systems for the government--mostly 
having to do with the level of oversight and insight program managers 
have with their contractors as well as pressures among contractors to 
produce low-cost estimates while bidding on contracts. Specific 
concerns mentioned include the following. 

* Nonincumbent contractors are often able to submit a lower price than 
the incumbent because they can be optimistic without being challenged 
by DOD. These optimistic estimates enable them to win new contracts. At 
the same time, however, nonincumbents are not necessarily the best 
organizations to carry out the development program, particularly 
because they do not have the technical and management experience 
associated with the legacy system being replaced. 

* Industry has been consolidated to a point where there may be only one 
company that can develop a needed component for a satellite system. 
This has enabled contractors to hold some programs hostage. 

* Program managers are often not equipped to understand what is behind 
a contractor's proposal, particularly because contractors are not 
likely to disclose technical risks and highlight other negative 
aspects. 

* Industry puts pressure on programs to have contractors develop 
critical technologies within an acquisition environment versus having 
the labs do it. When labs build technologies, the government allows the 
contractors that work on the system that would ultimately use the 
technologies to scrap them in favor of employing their own methods and 
expertise. 

* Program managers are not always experienced enough to stand up to 
contractors when development is being mismanaged. Program managers also 
may not understand the best ways to incentivize contractors and gain 
insight into their performance. 

* Contractors are facing workforce pressures similar to those 
experienced by the government, that is, not enough technical expertise 
to develop highly complex space systems. (Our recent report on space 
S&T echoed this concern as well, pointing out that several studies have 
found that both industry and the U.S. government face substantial 
shortages of scientists and engineers and that recruitment of new 
personnel is difficult because the space industry is one of many 
sectors competing for the limited number of trained scientists and 
engineers.)

* Some space programs are facing pressures related to funding and 
technology development because of an expectation widely held in the 
1990s that the commercial space market would experience a boom. At the 
time, DOD decreased funding for some capabilities, principally space 
launch, assuming the market could pay for a portion of research and 
development and that economies of scale would result. It also relied on 
the commercial sector to develop knowledge about production of 
satellites that eventually were purchased as part of the Wideband 
Gapfiller Satellite program. However, when anticipated commercial 
orders using the same technologies did not pan out, the government 
experienced unanticipated schedule delays. 

Conclusion: 

By delving into the underlying incentives and pressures that cause 
space system acquisitions to go awry, DOD will be better equipped to 
take the steps needed to attain successful outcomes. The comments of 
the 40-plus experts interviewed for this report reinforce our past 
findings that those steps should include the development of an overall 
investment strategy that prioritizes funding and the establishment of a 
sound business case before starting an acquisition program. 

Agency Comments and Our Evaluation: 

In written comments on our draft report (see enc. I), DOD presented its 
views in two primary areas. First, in responding to our conclusion that 
problems in space acquisitions are largely reflective of a lack of an 
investment strategy for space programs, DOD commented that it is 
implementing a new requirements process--known as the Joint 
Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS)--designed to 
ensure that each new military program is aligned with current and 
future joint needs. We have acknowledged in our past work that the 
implementation of JCIDS is a positive step toward realizing a DOD-wide 
investment strategy for weapon systems. In using this new process to 
achieve better outcomes, DOD will need to systematically prioritize its 
weapon system programs against funding plans and consistently perform 
rigorous analysis of alternatives that weigh the costs and benefits of 
achieving each desired capability via a space platform versus an air, 
land, or sea platform. Until DOD's strategic weapon system plans for 
the future are better linked to DOD's budget, these programs will 
continue to experience funding shortfalls, the shifting of funding from 
program to program, and accompanying schedule delays. 

Second, DOD commented on our conclusion that problems in space 
acquisitions are also a result of DOD's tendency to begin these 
programs before establishing a sound business case. DOD pointed out 
that criteria in its new space acquisition policy, which was updated on 
December 27, 2004, are designed to ensure a program's readiness to 
proceed into the development phase (or "program start"). We recognize 
that the new policy should increase knowledge about space programs 
before investment decisions are made but remain concerned that DOD will 
start acquisition programs and commit to cost, schedule, and 
performance baselines before it has established a sound business case-
-which we have found to be a match between requirements and resources 
(time, money, and mature technologies). 

DOD also provided a set of comments that it termed "corrections to 
errors in fact." In enclosure II, we respond to this set of comments; 
changes made to the draft report and areas of disagreement between us 
and DOD are highlighted. 

We are sending copies of this report to the Secretaries of Defense and 
the Air Force and interested congressional committees. We will make 
copies available to others on request. In addition, the report will be 
available on the GAO Web site at http://www.gao.gov. 

If you or your staff have any questions concerning this report, please 
contact me at (202) 512-4841. Other staff making key contributions to 
this report include Cristina Chaplain, Maricela Cherveny, Lily Chin, 
Art Gallegos, Jean Harker, John Krump, and Nancy Rothlisberger. 

Sincerely yours,

Signed by: 

Robert E. Levin, Director: 
Acquisition and Sourcing Management: 

[End of section]

Enclosure I: Comments from the Department of Defense: 

OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: 
6000 DEFENSE PENTAGON: 
NETWORKS AND INFORMATION INTEGRATION:
WASHINGTON, DC 20301-5000: 

JUN 6 2005: 

Mr. Robert E. Levin:
Director, Acquisition and Sourcing Management: 
U.S. General Accounting Office:
Washington, D.C. 20548: 

Dear Mr. Levin: 

This is the Department of Defense (DoD) response to the GAO draft 
report, "DEFENSE ACQUISITIONS: Incentives and Pressures That Drive 
Problems Affecting Satellite and Related Acquisitions," dated May 2, 
2005 (GAO Code 120402/GAO-05-570R). 

The Department of Defense acknowledges receipt of the draft report and 
does not concur with all the GAO's issues. Our formal comments are 
attached. We also attempted to correct several factual errors and 
provided some routine administrative corrections. 

Please note that the Under Secretary of the Air Force updated the 
National Security Space Acquisition Policy 03-01 on December 27, 2004. 
This revised version contains additional guidance in some of the areas 
which the GAO expressed concern. Until such time as programs have the 
opportunity to progress under the revised policy, we will not begin to 
see evidence of change. We welcome the opportunity to work with the GAO 
to ensure the final report reflects a clear understanding of those 
aspects of the space acquisition process over which the Department has 
control. 

I recommend that the GAO reassess the impact of the revised National 
Security Space Acquisition Policy 03-01 following a year of 
implementation. 

Signed for: 

Linton Wells II: 
Principal Deputy: 

Enclosure: As stated: 

GAO DRAFT REPORT DATED MAY 2, 2005 GAO-05-570R (GAO CODE 120402): 

"DEFENSE ACQUISITIONS: INCENTIVES AND PRESSURES THAT DRIVE PROBLEMS 
AFFECTING SATELLITE AND RELATED ACQUISITIONS": 

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE COMMENTS TO THE GAO CONCERNS: 

CONCERN 1: The GAO found that space acquisition problems are largely 
reflective of a lack of an overall investment strategy (p. 3/GAO Draft 
Report). 

DOD COMMENT: The basis behind a sound investment strategy includes 
establishing a sound requirements identification and prioritization 
process, determining the architectural context of the investment, and 
deciding on the amount of risk that will be accepted within resource 
constraints. The Department's recently developed Joint Capabilities 
Integrations and Development System (JCIDS) represents a major step 
toward outlining the necessary discipline in the requirements process. 
In addition, the Milestone Decision Authority (MDA) has required 
architectural context determinations be made prior to all Defense Space 
Acquisition Board Reviews held since inception of the NSS Acquisition 
Policy 03-01. These are completed as part of the Information Support 
Plan and integrated architectural products development, and they 
outline the relevance of the space system being proposed in light of 
crucial interfaces with or impacts upon supporting/supported systems, 
external organizations, and missions. After the requirements are 
validated through the JCIDS process and the relevance of the new system 
in the overall architecture is established, the MDA determines if a new 
system is feasible and affordable - with an appropriate focus on 
mission success. Prior to starting a new space program, the MDA 
determines the amount of acceptable program risk given the urgency of 
need and potentially available resources. When followed with rigor and 
discipline, this end-to-end process provides a sizable improvement in 
the refinement of our existing space investment strategy. Finally, the 
acquisition process requires constant coordination with the Planning, 
Programming, Budgeting and Execution process and consideration of other 
competing portfolios, in addition to the space portfolio, on a program- 
by-program basis. We continue to look for areas of improvement in all 
aspects of our current space investment strategy while allowing the 
process to mature. 

CONCERN 2: The GAO found that space acquisition problems are largely 
reflective of a tendency to set start dates for programs before a sound 
business case for them has been established (p. 3/GAO Draft Report). 

DOD COMMENT: National Security Space (NSS) Acquisition Policy 03-01 
identifies Key Decision Point (KDP)-B as the official "Program 
Initiation" point for an NSS program. In terns of establishing a solid 
business case, KDP-B is the point by which a funding baseline must be 
established. The purpose of KDP-B is to determine the program's 
readiness to begin the preliminary design development activities of 
Phase B. 

It is designed to increase confidence in the selected NSS system 
altemative(s) by assessing the estimated risk levels and projected 
performance envelope at a detailed engineering level. Where feasible, 
critical technology should complete testing in a relevant environment 
during Phase B. Technology that has not been tested in a relevant 
environment should be deferred to the next increment. Key acquisition 
documentation required for review during the KDP-B Independent Program 
Assessment include: initial integrated architecture from the system 
program office; updated system level CONOPS from concept sponsor; 
Milestone Decision Authority (MDA)-approved Acquisition Strategy; JROC-
approved updated Capability Development Document; Director, OT&E 
approved Test and Evaluation Master Plan; Integrated Program Summary; 
draft Acquisition Decision Memorandum; and draft Acquisition Program 
Baseline. Based on a thorough assessment of a program's maturity as 
outlined above, the DoD Space MDA decides on readiness to proceed to 
the next acquisition phase and consequently, "official" program start. 

CORRECTIONS TO ERRORS IN FACT: 

1. Page 2, first bullet. Report states, "'This system [SBIRS] is 
intended to replace an older generation of missile-warning 
satellites...." This phrasing fails to acknowledge that in addition to 
serving as a replacement for DSP, SBIRS will also provide critical, new 
capabilities for current and future threats. SBIRS will significantly 
improve upon DSP . with JROC-validated capabilities that are essential 
for countering today's and tomorrow's threats. It is extremely 
important to understand this distinction between DSP and SBIRS, 
especially given the drive to "cut back on [SBIRS] capabilities" as 
mentioned earlier in the document. 

2. Page 2, same bullet. Report goes on to state that delays in the 
Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) High Program are "forcing DoD to 
operate the older generation of satellites much longer than expected." 
The DoD is operating the Defense Support Program satellites longer than 
expected because they are fortuitously living longer than expected. 

3. Page 10, second full paragraph. Report implies that unlike the rest 
of the DoD, the space community has not adopted the evolutionary 
development approach--that is, pursuing incremental increases in 
capability versus significant leaps. NSS 03-01 states that Evolutionary 
Acquisition (EA) is the preferred strategy for rapid acquisition of 
mature technology for the user. The System Program Director/ Program 
Manager should describe the program's EA strategy in the program's 
Acquisition Strategy. The two main processes to perform EA are: 

a) Spiral Development. In this process, a desired capability is 
identified, but the end-state requirements are not known at program 
initiation. Those requirements are refined through demonstration and 
risk management, there is continuous user feedback, and each increment 
provides the user the best possible capability. The requirements for 
future increments depend on feedback from users and technology 
maturation. 

b) Incremental Development. In this process, a desired capability is 
identified, an end-state requirement is known, and that requirement is 
met over time by development of several increments, each dependent on 
available mature technology. 

4. Page 14, first paragraph, last sentence states: "In fact, problems 
related to technology discovery have severely impacted the SBIRS High 
program, among others." Technology discovery has not impacted SBIRS 
development. The 2002 Independent Review Team assessed the SBIRS space 
segment as technologically mature. The issues identified by the IRT 
involving immaturity to enter development were not technology issues. 
To quote the IRT report: 

"In general, faulty and overly optimistic assumptions laid the ground 
work for SBIRS High program activation in 1996. These included: 
extensive software reuse; high software productivity levels; commercial 
practice benefits; economic order efficiencies with satellite lot buys; 
availability of technical models; mature understanding of requirements, 
Concept of Operations (CONOPS), and interface specifications; and 
management stability."

The same IRT report also noted that SBIRS was following a phased 
implementation approach to address operational requirements. 

5. Page 14, second paragraph states: "We also previously found that 
DoD's new space acquisition policy increased acquisition risks by 
allowing programs to begin without having technologies proven in an 
operational or simulated environment or even begun with technologies in 
even lower stages of maturity." KDP-B is the official "Program 
Initiation" point for an NSS program as stated in the response to 
Finding 2. Design work is best tested when a technical baseline has 
been established. We are committed to testing technology in a relevant 
environment no later than KDP-C. Because the design baseline is not 
finalized until after Phase B, there is no technical baseline to be 
"proven in an operational or simulated environment" before "allowing 
programs to begin," that is, by KDP-B. Regarding maturity, the program 
office is required to conduct Technology Readiness Assessments during 
Phases A and B. In addition, for KDP-B and KDP-C, the Component Science 
and Technology Executive will conduct an independent review of the 
program office generated Technology Readiness Assessment. Finally, the 
Integrated Program Summary's detailed Risk Management section addresses 
technical maturity. At each KDP and Build Approval, the program office 
is expected to identify the key technology components of the system and 
provide an assessment of the maturity of each key component using the 
Technology Readiness Level (TRL) method identified in the DoD 
Acquisition Guidebook. The Independent Program Assessment Team (IPAT) 
reviews the program office assessment and determines if, in their view, 
all key technology components of the program have been identified. The 
]PAT also provides its own independent assessment of the maturity of 
the key components using the TRL method. The intent is to make the DoD 
Space MDA knowledgeable of the state of key component maturity so 
appropriate direction can be given in the Acquisition Decision 
Memorandum for additional technology maturation/risk reduction 
activities. 

6. Page 14, last paragraph cites several unique aspects of space 
acquisition programs: long length, complexity, and high cost of 
operational testing. A more commonly quoted set of criteria is: low 
quantities produced, continual development during the acquisition 
cycle, long operational life, infeasibility of conducting operational 
testing, and inability to repair once on orbit. 

7. Page 14, last paragraph states that officials within the Office of 
the Secretary of Defense "noted that allowing space programs to follow 
a separate acquisition process has effectively blocked-out oversight 
from the Office of the Secretary o^ Defense." NSS 03-01 is a policy of 
inclusiveness. In addition to the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff co-chairing the Defense Space Acquisition Board with the MDA, 
multiple OSD-level advisors and representatives serve as DSAB 
principals and, as such, advise the MDA. The OSD Cost Analysis 
Improvement Group is also responsible for developing independent cost 
analyses of DoD space MDAPs in support of the DoD space MDA's DSAB 
process. The role of OSD in oversight of defense space programs with 
respect to the Planning, Programming, Budgeting and Execution System 
remains unchanged. Each Service regularly submits Selective Acquisition 
Reports, Unit Cost Reports, and Defense Acquisition Executive Summary 
reports to the OSD staff. OSD is also required to coordinate on key 
acquisition documentation, such as the Acquisition Strategy, 
Acquisition Decision Memorandum, and Acquisition Program Baseline, Test 
and Evaluation Master Plan, and Integrated Program Summary. The March 
1, 2003 OSD Report to Congress on Defense Space Acquisition Programs 
provides further detail on this topic. 

8. Page 22, Enclosure III, Officials Interviewed for This Review, lists 
the Secretary of the Air Force's Space Plans and Policy Division as 
being interviewed. The correct organization is the Office of the Under 
Secretary of the Air Force's Directorate of Space Acquisition. 

[End of section]

Enclosure II: Department of Defense Comments and GAO's Responses: 

The Department of Defense (DOD) stated that we failed to acknowledge 
that the SBIRS High system, as currently planned, would serve to 
replace the Defense Support Program and improve on the capabilities it 
provides. 

GAO's Response: We have changed the text in this report to reflect that 
SBIRS High is intended to also upgrade existing capabilities. 

5. DOD stated that it is operating its Defense Support Program 
satellites longer than expected because they are "fortuitously living 
longer than expected."

GAO's Response: Although DOD's original plan was to begin launching 
SBIRS High satellites in 2002 regardless of the health or longevity of 
the Defense Support Program satellites, we revised this point to 
concentrate on the acquisition of SBIRS High. 

DOD stated that our draft report implies that unlike the rest of DOD, 
the space community has not adopted the evolutionary development 
approach--that is, pursuing incremental increases in capability versus 
significant leaps. 

GAO's Response: While the space acquisition policy has a section on 
Evolutionary Acquisition, the Air Force continues to pursue significant 
leaps in technology within its acquisition programs. For example, DOD 
plans to migrate from the Advance Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) 
satellites with radio frequency crosslinks capable of transmitting data 
at 60 megabits per second to the Transformational Satellite 
Communication System (TSAT) with laser crosslinks capable of supporting 
20,000 megabits per second. 

DOD commented that technology discovery has not affected the 
development of SBIRS High. 

GAO's Response: Although we agree that currently the major problems on 
SBIRS High are related to system integration, earlier in the program, 
there were technical development problems related to the sensors and 
satellites. We revised the text to show that system integration issues 
have also affected the development of SBIRS High. 

DOD stated that it is committed to testing technology in a relevant 
environment no later than key decision point C. DOD added that 
regarding maturity, the program office is required to conduct 
technology readiness assessments. Finally, DOD stated that the 
integrated program summary's detailed risk management section addresses 
technical maturity. 

GAO's Response: We note that the recently revised space acquisition 
policy added processes to assess the maturity of critical technologies 
and provided that "where feasible, critical technology should complete 
testing in a relevant environment during Phase B." The policy also 
states that technology that has not been tested in a relevant 
environment should be moved to the next increment. However, the policy 
still allows programs to continue to mature technology while they are 
designing the system and undertaking other product development 
activities during Phase B. Our work on best practices shows that 
successful acquisition programs do not start product development unless 
a match between requirements and the resources (time, technology, and 
money) can be made, and technologies should be matured in an 
environment that is focused on technology development. Under the DOD 
space acquisition policy, programs are allowed to enter Phase B with 
technologies that are immature. 

Regarding our citing some unique aspects of space acquisition programs, 
DOD mentioned low quantities produced, continual development during the 
acquisition cycle, long operational life, infeasibility of conducting 
operational testing, and inability to repair once on orbit. 

GAO's Response: The three unique aspects of space acquisition programs 
cited in our report were those given by interviewed officials. 
Concerning the DOD-mentioned criteria, our work has found that 
technology development is best conducted before product development 
rather than continually throughout the acquisition cycle. Also, low 
quantities produced and long operational life are aspects shared by 
many non-space weapon systems. In addition, we have reported that 
although operational testing is expensive, it is feasible. 

DOD took issue with a comment that the separate space acquisition 
process has effectively blocked out oversight from the Office of the 
Secretary of Defense (OSD). DOD clarified that its space policy is one 
of inclusiveness and identified the various organizational participants 
in the space acquisition process. 

GAO's Response: We note that DOD is taking issue with comments we 
obtained from officials within OSD. Because this information is opinion 
and is qualified as such in this report, there are no errors to 
correct. The space acquisition policy does provide for OSD stakeholders 
on the Defense Space Acquisition Board. However, it is the Under 
Secretary of the Air Force who has milestone decision authority over 
space programs, and not the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, 
Technology, and Logistics, who has milestone decision authority for 
other weapon systems. We revised our report to state that the separate 
space acquisition process has effectively reduced rather than blocked 
direct OSD oversight. 

DOD commented that we had incorrectly identified the Secretary of the 
Air Force's Space Plans and Policy Division as being interviewed. 

GAO's Response: We changed that item in enclosure IV to read the 
"Directorate of Space Acquisition."

[End of section]

Enclosure III: Related Reports: 

DOD: 

Report of the Defense Science Board/Air Force Scientific Advisory Board 
Joint Task Force on Acquisition of National Security Space Programs, 
May 2003 (also referred to as the "Young Panel report") and the July 
2004 update to this report. 

Space-Based Infrared System Independent Review Team, Final Report, 
February 2002. 

GAO: 

Defense Acquisitions: Assessments of Selected Major Weapon Programs, 
GAO-05-301 (Washington, D.C.: March 31, 2005). 

Technology Development: New DOD Space Science and Technology Strategy 
Provides Basis for Optimizing Investments but Future Versions Need to 
Be More Robust, GAO-05-155 (Washington, D.C.: Jan. 28, 2005). 

Defense Acquisitions: Space-Based Radar Effort Needs Additional 
Knowledge before Starting Development, GAO-04-759 (Washington, D.C.: 
July 23, 2004). 

Defense Acquisitions: Risks Posed by DOD's New Space Systems 
Acquisition Policy, GAO-04-379R (Washington, D.C.: Jan. 29, 2004). 

Space Acquisitions: Committing Prematurely to the Transformational 
Satellite Program Elevates Risks for Poor Cost, Schedule, and 
Performance Outcomes, GAO-04-71R (Washington, D.C.: Dec. 4, 2003). 

Defense Acquisitions: Improvements Needed in Space Systems Acquisition 
Policy to Optimize Growing Investment in Space, GAO-04-253T 
(Washington, D.C.: Nov. 18, 2003): 

Defense Acquisitions: Despite Restructuring, SBIRS High Program Remains 
at Risk of Cost and Schedule Overruns, GAO-04-48 (Washington, D.C.: 
Oct. 31, 2003). 

Defense Acquisitions: Improvements Needed in Space Systems Acquisition 
Management Policy, GAO-03-1073 (Washington, D.C.: Sept. 15, 2003). 

Military Space Operations: Common Problems and Their Effects on 
Satellite and Related Acquisitions, GAO-03-825R (Washington, D.C.: June 
2, 2003). 

Military Space Operations: Planning, Funding, and Acquisition 
Challenges Facing Efforts to Strengthen Space Control, GAO-02-738 
(Washington, D.C.: Sept. 23, 2002). 

Best Practices: Capturing Design and Manufacturing Knowledge Early 
Improves Acquisition Outcomes, GAO-02-701 (Washington, D.C.: July 15, 
2002). 

Defense Acquisitions: DOD Faces Challenges in Implementing Best 
Practices, GAO-02-469T (Washington, D.C.: Feb. 27, 2002). 

Best Practices: Better Matching of Needs and Resources Will Lead to 
Better Weapon System Outcomes, GAO-01-288 (Washington, D.C.: March 8, 
2001). 

Defense Acquisitions: Employing Best Practices Can Shape Better Weapon 
System Decisions, GAO/T-NSIAD-00-137 (Washington, D.C.: April 26, 
2000). 

Best Practices: Better Management of Technology Development Can Improve 
Weapon System Outcomes, GAO/NSIAD-99-162 (Washington, D.C.: July 30, 
1999). 

Best Practices: Successful Application to Weapon Acquisitions Requires 
Changes in DOD's Environment, GAO/NSIAD-98-56 (Washington, D.C.: Feb. 
24, 1998). 

Other: 

Booz, Allen, Hamilton, Space Systems Development Growth Analysis, 
McLean, Va., October 2002. 

[End of section]

Enclosure IV: Officials Interviewed for This Review: 

Office of the Secretary of Defense: 

* Office of the Director, Program Analysis and Evaluation and Cost 
Analysis Improvement Group: 

* Office of Force Transformation: 

* Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and 
Logistics: 

* Assistant Secretary of Defense for Networks and Information 
Integration: 

Secretary of the Air Force: 

* National Security Space Office: 

* Office of Science, Technology, and Engineering: 

* Directorate of Space Acquisition: 

Air Force Space Command: 

* Directorate of Requirements: 

* Systems Engineering and Integration Office: 

* Space and Missile Systems Center: 

* Program Executive Office: 

* Advanced Extremely High Frequency Program: 

* Development and Transformation Directorate: 

* Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle Program: 

* NAVSTAR GPS Joint Program: 

* Space-Based Infrared Systems Program: 

* Space Radar Program: 

Missile Defense Agency: 

* Space Tracking and Surveillance System Program: 

Naval Research Laboratory: 

Various industry and former high-ranking Department of Defense 
officials: 

[End of section]

FOOTNOTES

[1] GAO, Military Space Operations: Common Problems and Their Effects 
on Satellite and Related Acquisitions, GAO-03-825R (Washington, D.C.: 
June 2, 2003).