It’s 1995. You’re the Johns Hopkins University APL Project Manager and have been contracted by NASA for the NEAR mission. Near’s Critical Design Review (CDR) has already passed, and everything’s been designed and coded. You’re right on target to meet the lofty goal of launching the spacecraft only 27 months from the mission’s inceptions. Suddenly, you find out that a change to the mission has been proosed; several team members want you to make a modification to the missions XGRS instrument.

They want this change because it would allow the NEAR mission to collect data on gamma ray bursts. They propose that you modify the software, the hardware, or both. But changing any of the hardware or software at this late stage in the project would have an impact on the science, the schedule, the budget, and the team.

What are you going to do? What will you need to know to make your decision?

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