International Space Station could be privatized under Trump administration plan

Yet it seems like a national progression (or at least on the same wavelength) for the Trump administration to float the idea of privatizing the International Space Station (ISS), so it can operate as a sort-of real estate venture.

Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, is already encouraging the White House to scrap this plan.

As the Post notes, the station is no stranger to private industry; Boeing now operates it at a cost of $3 to $4 billion a year.

However, the Washington Post also reported that the White House apparently doesn't have anyone specific in mind to take over the space station, which costs $US3 -4 billion a year to run and has already run the federal government almost $US100 billion in construction, maintenance, and operational costs.

It said a White House budget request to be released Monday US time would request US$150 million in 2019, with more in additional years "to enable the development and maturation of commercial entities and capabilities which will ensure that commercial successors to the ISS-potentially including elements of the ISS-are operational when they are needed". In other words, to transition to some sort of a public-private partnership.The document says NASA will expand worldwide and commercial partnerships over the next seven years in order to "ensure continued human access to and presence in low Earth orbit".

The US has reportedly spent almost $US100 billion ($A140 billion) to build and operate the ISS.

"As a fiscal conservative, you know one of the dumbest things you can to is cancel programs after billions in investment when there is still serious usable life ahead", Cruz told the Post.

Could the International Space Station become privatized? The International Space System is, after all, international, and it's unlikely that America's partners in low orbit would be so enthusiastic about the US bringing about the deconstruction of the intergalactic state.

The International Space Station argued one of the Post's sources, Andrew Rush, the chief executive of Made in Space, 'is built for science and human exploration, it's not built for profit seeking'. "It's inherently always going to be an worldwide construct that requires U.S. government involvement and multinational cooperation".

Other space agencies like the European Space Agency, Japan's JAXA, and Russia's Roscosmos also contribute to the ISS, and while a lapse in funding from the United States could cripple the station regardless, selling off parts of it could create conflict with the numerous other space agencies involved.

Russian Federation has scrubbed the planned launch of an unmanned cargo spacecraft that was to have delivered tons of supplies to the International Space Station.

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