The Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel (ASAP), an advisory committee that reports to NASA and Congress, has issued its 2017 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 Thursday, is based on the panel’s 2017 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.
“It is clear to the panel that NASA is at a critical juncture in human spaceflight development and that this is a time to retain focus on program details; to maintain a sense of urgency while not giving in to schedule pressure and to continue with program plans without neglecting, shortchanging, or deleting program content essential to safety and mission assurance,” said ASAP Chair Patricia Sanders.
The 2017 report highlights activities of the past year, and includes assessments of the agency’s:
- Exploration Systems Development
- Commercial Crew Program
- Deep space exploration
- International Space Station operations
- Aeronautics missions and air operations, and
- Enterprise protection
The report reiterates the need for constancy of purpose as NASA is on the verge of realizing the results of years of work and extensive resource investment.
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 2017 report, visit: