Aviation Research:

Information on FAA's Research, Engineering, and Development Program

RCED-89-122FS: Published: Apr 12, 1989. Publicly Released: Apr 20, 1989.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO developed budget information on the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Research, Engineering, and Development (RE&D) Program for fiscal years (FY) 1987 through 1989 at the subprogram level.

GAO found that: (1) the program objective was to improve the nation's air transportation system by increasing safety, productivity, and capacity to meet future air traffic demands; and (2) FAA budget documents did not contain information on staffing and scheduling at the subprogram level. GAO also found that: (1) FAA obligated $158 million, $150 million, and an estimated $165 million for RE&D in FY 1987, 1988, and 1989, respectively; (2) the staffing level remained constant at 645 positions; (3) FAA contracted for 70 percent of all RE&D work with the private sector, universities, or other federal entities; and (4) FAA maintained the ability to add new subprograms and transfer funds among the subprograms to respond to developments in the aviation industry during any fiscal year.