NASA OIG: $368 Million Cost to Make Constellation Metric Compliant - NASA Watch

This is unbelievable.

NASA has a standing policy to use metric (SI) units for all projects. Unfortunately, much of American industry, including the DoD, still uses English units. The Constellation program decided to use metric units two years ago, and how they want to switch back to English units, saying that it costs over $300 million to re-tool and re-draw all the hardware they would be re-using or modifying from older programs, like the Space Shuttle.

Think about that...over $300 million. That's more than many satellites cost for design, build and launch. And people wonder why companies like SpaceX can do launches cheaper...

Just today, I had several conversations about units at work. For the same project, two different groups of modelers were doing analysis. Once it recently became time to merge or combine the models, lo and behold, we discover that one group used metric and one didn't. Bleh...

The engineer in me just wants the U.S. and the U.K. to just get over it and switch completely to metric. Then I think about baseball and golf and milk and gasoline and everything that would have to change...

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