recommended in the "Presidential Commission Report" and at the request
of the NASA administrator, the National Research Council established
an Independent Oversight Panel chaired by Dr. H. Guyford Stever,
who reports directly to the NASA Administrator. Initially, the panel
was given introductory briefings on the Shuttle system requirements,
implementation and control, the original design and manufacturing
of the SRM, Mission 51-L accident analyses and preliminary plans
for the redesign. The panel has met with major SRM manufacturers
and vendors, and has visited some of their facilities. The panel
frequently reviewed the RSRM design criteria, engineering analyses
and design, and certification program planning. Panel members continuously
review the design and testing for safe operation, selection and
specifications for material, and quality assurance and control.
The panel has continued to review the design as it progresses through
certification and review the manufacturing and assembly of the first
flight RSRM. Panel members have participated in major program milestones,
project requirements review, and preliminary design review; they
also will participate in future review. Six written reports have
been provided by the panel to the NASA administrator.
In addition to the NRC, the redesign team has a design review group
of 12 expert senior engineers from NASA and the aerospace industry.
They have advised on major program decisions and serve as a "sounding
board" for the program.
Additionally, NASA requested the four other major SRM companies
-- Aerojet Strategic Propulsion Co., Atlantic Research Corp., Hercules
Inc. and United Technologies Corp.'s Chemical Systems Division --
to participate in the redesign efforts by critiquing the design
approach and providing experience on alternative design approaches.