Trump Administration Hoping to Privatize International Space Station, Report Claims

The rocket will arrive at the International Space Station at 12:24pm

"The proposal would also end support for the International Space Station in 2025 and make deep cuts to popular education and science programs", he added.

NASA's fiscal year 2019 budget proposal will include plans to end funding for the International Space Station in 2025, but leaves open the possibility of handing part or all of the station over to private operators. The budget would set aside only $150 million to encourage private development of the station, and devote the savings to Trump's goal of sending astronauts once again to the moon.

W├Ârner noted that other countries supporting the ISS had only committed until 2024, and Trump's proposals signaled an intention for the United States to use the orbiting station beyond that date.

The US President Donald Trump signed the Space Policy Directive 1 on December 11th, 2017 to send US astronauts back to the moon to prepare for a mission to Mars.

The U.S. has contributed roughly $100 billion to the ISS since its creation in the 1990s.

The budget requests $19.6bn for Nasa in 2019, an increase of $500m from this year.

The documents show an administration that is eager to put a new emphasis on human space exploration, but unwilling to spend enough to dramatically speed NASA's long-term-and long-delayed-plans to return Americans to space without leveraging growing private investment.

Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, who chairs the Senate Subcommittee on Space, said last week that it had to be "numbskulls" at the Office of Management and Budget who proposed ending federal funding for the space station, The New York Times reported.

As it prepares a transition plan, the White House said it "will request market analysis and business plans from the commercial sector and solicit plans from commercial industry".

Next up for the Russians is the return of three station crew members aboard the Soyuz MS-06/52S spacecraft February 27, bringing outgoing station commander Alexander Misurkin and two NASA astronauts, Mark Vande Hei and Joseph Acaba, back to a landing on the steppe of Kazakhstan to close out a 166-day stay in space.

Private companies have also been handling supplies delivery to the space station for the past six years, according to the Post.

The space station is a joint effort between several space agencies from around the world.

.

"It's a good place for the conversation to begin", said Andrew Rush, CEO of Made in Space, which uses 3D printing to build hardware for space.

CASIS said Monday it doesn't know what a commercially run space station would look like, but "looks forward to working with both the Administration and Congress on the future of the International Space Station".

Rocket builders SpaceX and Orbital ATK have contracts with NASA to complete supply missions without crews. "NASA is called to refocus existing activities towards exploration, by redirecting funding to innovative new programmes and support for new public-private initiatives", acting NASA Administrator Robert Lightfoot said in a statement.

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