National Partnership for Reinventing Government (NPR)

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Four-Year Reinvention Plan


Updated August 18, 2000



NASA is an investment in America’s future. As explorers, pioneers, and innovators, we boldly expand frontiers in air and space to inspire and serve America and to benefit the quality of life on Earth.



Goal #1: NASA’s Earth Science (formerly Mission to Planet Earth) Enterprise will expand and disseminate information about the Earth system to enable productive use of Earth science and technology in public and private sectors.


  1. The Earth Science Enterprise is fulfilling its commitment to make its Earth observation data widely available for research and education.
  1. The Earth Science Enterprise is making sure its data and associated information and knowledge lead to practical solutions for business and local government. For example, the Enterprise established 29 partnerships of various types to develop applications of Earth remote-sensing data for agriculture, natural resources management, urban and regional planning, and disaster mitigation.
Goal #2: NASA’s Aerospace Technology Enterprise will develop technology advances to achieve safer, cleaner, quieter, more affordable air travel by creating long-term partnerships with industry and the Federal Aviation Administration and by demonstrating new technologies.


  1. In FY 1999, the Enterprise set 17 performance targets to address eight specific objectives. The Enterprise fully met or achieved 12 of these by the end of FY 1999 and 14 by the end of CY 1999. The remaining three will be fully achieved in FY 2000.
  2. The Enterprise established Aeronautics Education Laboratory sites in eight new cities (against a goal of three).
  3. The Enterprise transferred 12 new technologies (against a goal of 10) to industry and other government agencies.
  4. The Enterprise completed its Triennial Customer Satisfaction Survey, measuring a range of customers that include the aviation and related industries, the academic community, non-aviation industries, and other government agencies, such as DOD and FAA. The survey uses a 10-point scale, and the Enterprise met its goal of increasing the number of responses rated "8" and above from 30 to 35%. Ninety percent of the respondents rated the Enterprise at "5" or above on all measures.
  5. With its partners, the Enterprise made significant advances in air transportation systems safety and environmental concerns. The goals for FY 1999 focused primarily on safety and air quality, but progress also was made in the areas of community noise reduction, airport capacity improvements, and technology to reduce the weight and cost of future aircraft.

Goal #3: NASA’s Space Science Enterprise will contribute to achieving the science, math, and technology education goals of our nation by enhancing the public’s understanding of science by the end of FY 2000.


The Enterprise’s space science missions and research missions continued to make unique contributions to education and the public understanding of science by providing a steady return of discoveries and new knowledge to scientists and the public.

Goal #4: NASA’s Human Exploration and Development of Space Enterprise, in cooperation with other NASA Enterprises, will expand the commercial development of space by facilitating access to space for commercial researchers and by sharing knowledge, capabilities, and assets that will benefit all.


  1. The U.S. and our international partners made significant progress in FY 1999 in deploying and operationalizing the International Space Station (ISS) for research, engineering, and exploration activities. Targets achieved included:
  1. Non-NASA investments ion space research increased from $35 million in FY 1996 to $51.2 million in FY 1999, a 40% increase.
  2. The Enterprise established the Food Technology Commercial Space Center, awarded to Iowa State University. Commercial partners include Kraft Foods, Maytag, and Pioneer.
  3. The Enterprise sponsored a variety of initiatives in support of NASA’s Education Plan to improve math and science literacy. These included:
  1. The Enterprise sponsored two demonstrations of the Telemedicine Instrumentation Pack, one in Montana and one in Corpus Christi, Texas. The performance was optimal in both cases.
  2. The Enterprise sponsored two talks, and published two papers demonstrating the application of laser light scattering technology for the early detection of eye-tissue damage from diabetes.

Goal #5: NASA’s Aerospace Technology Enterprise will complete R&D to enable U.S. industry to reduce the cost of launches to low Earth orbit.

  1. Although testing of the first development of the Aerospike Engine for the X-33 began in FY 1999, the second and third engines — the flight engines for X-33 — were not tested on schedule due to a problem with the liquid hydrogen tank.
  2. Progress toward the first flight of the X-34 continued, although slowed by hardware delivery problems and the resolution of environmental concerns at the White Sands Test Facility.