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Kennedy Space Center Software Delayed, Over Budget

Photo: NASA
Photo: NASA

Software that controls the launch systems at Kennedy Space Center is over budget and behind schedule.
That’s according to a report from NASA’s Inspector General.

The Spaceport Command and Control System (SCCS) is a collection of computer software that controls fuel pumps, valves and power supplies across the space center and it monitors the health of spacecraft before a launch.

It will be used to control the launch of the Space Launch System and the Orion capsule – NASA’s next generation of human spacecraft.

But the development of that software system is over budget by 77 percent and delayed by at least a year.

A report from NASA’s Inspector General says the current method of “glue-ing” different pieces of software together is becoming more complex than anticipated. So far, programmers have written 2.5 million lines of code, with more than two years of planned development to go.

The inspector general recommends NASA look at software packages available “off the shelf” from commercial companies as a replacement. NASA says it will re-evaluate its software strategies after the next test launch of Orion in 2018.

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration.