Space & Technology

January 11, 2017

NASA’s Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel releases 2016 annual report

The Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel, an advisory committee that reports to NASA and Congress, has issued its 2016 annual report examining NASA’s safety performance over the past year and highlighting accomplishments, issues and concerns to agency and government officials. 

The report, released Wednesday, is based on the panel’s 2016 fact-finding and quarterly public meetings; “insight” visits and meetings; direct observations of NASA operations and decision-making processes; discussions with NASA management, employees and contractors; and the panel members’ own experience.

“NASA has made great progress over the past year and is at a critical time with hardware being produced, testing intensifying, and several important milestones in the near future,” said ASAP Chair Patricia Sanders. “Challenges and difficult decisions will need to be faced with clarity, transparency and thoroughness. Risk elimination in human spaceflight is impossible, but risk management is imperative.”

The 2016 report highlights activities of 2016 and includes assessments of the agency’s:
* Enterprise information technology protection
* Commercial Crew Program
* Deep space exploration
* International Space Station operations, and
* Aeronautics missions and air operations

The report again emphasis the need for constancy of purpose — consistent program goals, funding and schedules.

Congress established the panel in 1968 to provide advice and make recommendations to the NASA administrator on safety matters after the 1967 Apollo 1 fire that claimed the lives of three American astronauts.

For more information about the Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel, and to view the 2016 report, visit

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