After months of negotiating, NASA Ames Research Center is expected to launch a safety study of the north airfield at Los Angeles International Airport next month, under the terms of a $1.4 million contract up for consideration Monday, the Daily Breeze reports.


The Board of Airport Commissioners is expected to sign off on a new contract with NASA, just a few months after a similar deal fell apart.


A $2 million contract with NASA approved last August never got off the ground because the agency changed its focus from aviation issues back to space projects, according to LAX officials. Although the initial study was dropped, airport officials continued to negotiate the study's parameters with NASA.


In fact, some aspects of the study are still being hammered out, according to Jonas Dino, a spokesman for NASA Ames Research Center, based just outside San Jose.


"We are still in discussions with LAX," Dino said. "If we can match their interests and capabilities, then we will move forward with the study."


NASA will spend the next year studying five different options for the north airfield at LAX, then conduct a series of simulations aimed at projecting airline traffic through 2020, according to an airport report.


However, NASA will not interpret the data, which was one of the sticking points during the last round of contract negotiations, airport officials said.

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