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Premature: It’s too early to say whether the Department of Defense’s efforts to develop small-sized, low-cost satellites and the infrastructure to place them in orbit quickly will be successful, the Government Accountability Office states in a new report issued April 25. “At this time, DOD lacks a plan that lays out how it will direct its investments to meet current operational needs while pursuing innovative approaches and new technologies,” writes the GAO, the watchdog agency of Congress. “Achieving success in ORS will be challenging.” GAO says progress has been made since it last investigated DOD’s operationally responsive space activities in 2006, such as the establishment of the joint ORS office, first launch of a TacSat experimental quick-response satellite, and development of interface standards for small-sized satellite busses. However, most ORS efforts are still in their initial phases. “With relatively modest resources, the joint ORS office must quickly respond to the warfighter's urgent needs, while continuing research and development efforts that are necessary to help reduce the cost and time of future space acquisitions,” GAO says.