Donald Trump Reportedly Wants To Privatise The International Space Station

Donald Trump Reportedly Wants To Privatise The International Space Station

The US Administration of Donald Trump plans to privatize the International Space Station (ISS) and turn it into a privately-owned enterprise on a commercial basis.

Reports have circulated for several weeks that the United States government was planning to halt Nasa spending on the programme after 2024 and save up to $4 billion each year.

The administration's plan comes after a week of rumors that it might end stop directing resources toward the 20-year-old laboratory, which NASA launched in partnership with space agencies from other countries. "I$3 t is possible that industry could continue to operate certain elements or capabilities of the ISS as part of a future commercial platform", it states.

This NASA TV video grab image shows NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei (left) and Scott Tingle as they step out on a spacewalk to fix the robotic arm at the International Space Station. "Canceling programs after billions in investment when there is still serious useable life ahead of you", said the senator.

Could the International Space Station become a commercial venture run by a private industry?

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Nasa is now studying the feasibility of extending the life of the ISS to 2028, and possibly beyond, with the White House urging the space agency to focus on landing on the moon again in preparation for further deep space missions. NASA now spends about $3-4 billion per years to run it, and the government has spent around $100 billion on it total since the ISS was first launched into low-Earth orbit in 1998.

Reports emerged only last month that Nasa had plans to pull out of the ISS, but now, it looks like the government will be making a move to completely privatise the enterprise. In other words, to transition to some sort of a public-private partnership.The document says NASA will expand global and commercial partnerships over the next seven years in order to "ensure continued human access to and presence in low Earth orbit". The station allows worldwide crews to conduct scientific research in the environment of low Earth orbit.

As the US has already spent some $100 billion to launch, operate and support the orbital station, the plan is expected to face stiff opposition. NASA took steps to outsource cargo supply flights to the ISS to the private space companies Orbital ATK and SpaceX under President George W. Bush; the Obama administration extended the model to hire Boeing and SpaceX to fly astronauts there.

Will The International Space Station Really Go Private?

The end of federal funding for the ISS would not necessarily mean the end of the station, or at least some parts of it, according to the document.

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