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Status Report on the Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS)

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The risks to deploying the Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS) on schedule continue to increase, Alexis M. Stefani, Assistant Inspector General for Auditing, testified before the House Transportation Subcommittee on Aviation. Despite uncovering additional problems during software re-testing, FAA does not plan to adjust the STARS deployment schedule to allow for additional testing time, Stefani said. Instead, FAA has developed a riskier plan to test all versions of STARS simultaneously. Second, the ASR-11 digital radar program continues to pose a major risk to STARS. The Defense Department recently delayed approving full production of the ASR-11 program until 2002 so uncovered deficiencies can be corrected. FAA, however, needs to make a procurement decision by this December in order to have the digital radar on time. Finally, further delays in deploying STARS at Philadelphia International Airport could seriously impact airspace across the East Coast if STARS is not fully operational at that location by February 2003.