IG Finds NASA 'Lacks Sufficient Controls' Over Moon Rocks | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Airborne Unlimited-
Monday

Airborne-Unmanned w/AUVSI-
Tuesday

Airborne Unlimited-
Wednesday

AMA Drone Report-
Thursday

Airborne Unlimited-
Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 11.13.17

Airborne-Unmanned 11.14.17

Airborne 11.15.17

AMA Drone Report 11.16.17

Airborne 11.10.17

Airborne-YouTube

Airborne 11.13.17

Airborne-Unmanned 11.14.17

Airborne 11.15.17

AMA Drone Report 11.16.17

Airborne 11.10.17

Sat, Dec 10, 2011

IG Finds NASA 'Lacks Sufficient Controls' Over Moon Rocks

Report Indicates Hundreds Of 'Astromaterials' Have Been Lost

A report released Thursday by NASA's Inspector General indicates that the agency has lost hundreds of samples of moon rocks and other "astromaterials" since the first specimens were returned to Earth by the Apollo program. NASA confirmed that 517 loaned astromaterials have been lost or stolen between 1970 and June 2010, including 18 lunar samples reported lost by a researcher in 2010 and 218 lunar and meteorite samples stolen from a researcher at the Johnson Space Center in 2002, but since recovered.

Lunar Sample Disk NASA Image

The incident which sparked the investigation focused on a sample disk loaned to the Mount Cuba Astronomical Observatory in Greenville, Delaware. According to the report, NASA had loaned the sample disk to the Observatory in 1978, and the loan agreement between the two organizations had expired in June 2008. However, due to an administrative oversight and the lack of a system to adequately track renewal dates for long-term loans, the Exhibits Manager did not contact Mount Cuba regarding the loan until February 2010. At that time, the Exhibits Manager learned that the responsible Mount Cuba employee had died the previous year and that the Observatory could not locate the sample. As of December 2011, the disk still has not been found.

As a result, the IG found that NASA lacks sufficient controls over its loans of moon rocks and other astromaterials, which increases the risk that these unique resources may be lost. "Specifically, we found that Curation Office records were inaccurate, researchers could not account for all samples loaned to them, and researchers held samples for extended periods without performing research or returning the samples to NASA," the report says. "In addition, although NASA recently improved controls over loans to educators, we identified additional opportunities for NASA to strengthen its practices and update its policies for loans of astromaterials for education and public display purposes."

Apollo 15 Moon Rock NASA Image

The report says that NASA needs to tighten controls over educator and public display loans of these unique resources, and that while NASA "has taken some steps over the last 2 years to improve controls over loans of lunar and meteorite samples for use in classrooms, related Agency policies are out of date and do not accurately reflect current practices and organizational responsibilities."

In responding to the IG's investigation, NASA management said it agreed with the findings and recommendations, and set a self-imposed deadline of September 30th, 2012 to have new safeguards and procedures in place.

FMI: Full Report

Advertisement

More News

Airborne 11.15.17: XCOR BK, V-22 Osprey Milestone, GAMA 3rd Quarter Stats

Also: UK Airport Cancellation, Gone West: Robert Wagstaff, EASA Certifies Bell 505, USN's 1st MQ-4C Triton This is a heartbreaker, as we were big fans of XCOR Aerospace -- which fi>[...]

Airborne-Unmanned 11.14.17: Drone Registration, AT&T's Flying COW, Pilot Charged

Also: Boeing Completes Acquisition, Drones For LAFD, DJI Seeks Transport Canada’s Help, Uber and NASA A defense authorization bill that includes a return to civilian drone re>[...]

AMA Drone Report 11.16.17: Drone Registration, Drone Journalists Jailed

Also: Terror Advisory, DRL Sim, SureFly Octocopter, Space Needle Drone Pilot, FAI-ASFC World Fly-In Expo A bill that includes a return to civilian drone registration has been inclu>[...]

AMA Drone Report 11.09.17: Commercial Drone Insurance, FAI Drone Races, DJI Quiz

Also: AR Drone Flight Sim, San Diego State Drone Lab, SkyPixel Photo Competition, AMA Regulatory Efforts More benefits are in the works for AMA members! This comes through the offe>[...]

Winter Haven, FL Airport Hosts Chinese Delegation

Group Learning About Non-Controlled Airports, GA And Seaplanes A delegation associated with the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) recently visited Winter Haven Airport >[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2017 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC