International Space Station: U.S. Life-Cycle Funding Requirements: NSIAD-98-147

May 1998
GAO Reports;5/22/1998, p1
Government Document
The life-cycle cost is the sum of direct, indirect, recurring, and nonrecurring costs of a system during its entire life through disposal. Overall, the estimated cost to develop, assemble, and operate the space station has reached about $96 billion, an increase of almost $2 billion over GAO's last estimate made in 1995. Development costs represent the largest increase--more than 20 percent. This increase is attributable to schedule slippages, prime contract growth, additional crew return vehicle costs, and the effects of delays in the delivery of the Russian-made Service Module. Overall, the costs would have been significantly higher had there not been an offsetting reduction in shuttle support costs. The reduced shuttle costs have resulted from NASA's estimates that the average cost per flight throughout the station's era will be dramatically lower than had been estimated in 1995. GAO summarized this report in testimony before Congress; see: Space Station: U.S. Life-Cycle Funding Requirements, by Allen Li, Associate Director for Defense Acquisitions Issues, before the House Committee on Science. GAO/T-NSIAD-98-212, June 24 (nine pages).


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