6.1.1 For those cases in which a Center or project desires a general exclusion from requirement(s) in this NPR or desires to generically apply specific alternate requirements that do not meet or exceed the requirements of this NPR, the requester shall submit a waiver for those exclusions or alternate requirements for approval by the NASA Headquarters' Chief Engineer with appropriate justification.
This type of waiver (which is approved by the NASA Headquarters' Chief Engineer) is for generic/blanket relief from a requirement for a Center, Center organization, or multiple projects over an extended time. Generic/blanket waivers are not to be confused with normal waivers that address relief from a requirement on a single project or in a specific instance (which can be approved at the Center level if so specified in last column of Appendix D [of NPR 7150.2]).
1.2 Applicability Across Classes
Centers and multi-Center projects typically create local directives and processes that address Agency-wide requirements as well as additional requirements from lessons learned from software anomalies and failures on similar systems. This requirement is intended to eliminate the need for repetitive waivers across similar projects at a Center or across multiple Centers in the case of a major project. Generic waivers of this nature are needed for Agency requirements relief in Center Procedural Requirements documentation as well as high-level documents on major programs/projects.
The issuance of generic waiver coverage provides a Center's programs/projects relief from specific requirements within the specified scope for current and future software engineering activities, until the waiver's expiration date.
The distinctive characteristic of this requirement is the allowance of waivers that span multiple projects at a given Center, as well as allowing major programs and projects to be granted waivers across multiple elements.
Risk is always one of the primary considerations in evaluating a waiver for approval by a NASA Technical Authority (TA). Requesters are to ensure that risks are well documented with sound rationale in the waiver request. In some instances, alternative techniques can mitigate these risks. The mitigating factors are documented so the TA can clearly understand the resulting risk being accepted by the Center or program/project. This Handbook has a section on related NASA Lessons Learned for many NPR 7150.2 requirements. These Lessons Learned provide a good start to identifying risk related to projects not performing specific requirements.
The second type of generic waiver addresses the replacement of specific with alternative requirements by the Center or program/project. Advanced software technology and/or tools may mitigate risks associated with not implementing a set of NPR 7150.2 requirements but may fail to meet the requirement itself. Alternative Center-specific requirements might be proposed as a replacement to one or more requirements in the NPR. The likelihood that the waiver will be approved lessens if the alternate requirements set negatively changes the projects' risk profile unnecessarily, reduces safety, or impacts quality.
While on the surface this appears to be related to the partial Center (P (Center) requirement discussion (see SWE-140), the key differences are (1) the implementation of P (Center) provides only partial relief from the full requirement, (2) results of the SWE-120 waivers are intended to last for an extended time, and (3) they cover multiple instances of requirement relief. The SWE-140 application, on the other hand, is intended for a particular project's implementation and/or life cycle or a portion of its life cycle.
To assure the broad applicability of the request to a Center under SWE-120, the requestor makes certain that all work areas and/or elements of a Center's mission are reviewed, e.g., space, aeronautics, research, advanced technology, institutional infrastructure).
(Editor note: Please contact the Handbook Development Team if you have an example of a general exclusion waiver request that is shareable with the software community.
4. Small Projects
6. Lessons Learned
No Lessons Learned have currently been identified for this requirement.