US plans to privatize ISS

US plans to privatize ISS

The docking of the ISS with the space shuttle Atlantis (right) and the Russian Union (extreme left corner) in 2011

Is it possible for the ISS to become a commercial enterprise? It turns out that such a wish comes from the White House, hoping to put an end to the financing of the expensive program.

We are talking about the privatization of the ISS - a low-orbit space station, piloted by NASA and developed in collaboration with Russia. The station became an important object in space exploration, as it brought together specialists from different countries in scientific research in low-Earth orbit.

The United States is going to stop direct federal support for the ISS by 2025, but this does not mean that the platform itself was written off. There is a possibility that certain elements or capabilities of the station are used as a future commercial platform. NASA will expand international and commercial partnerships over the next 7 years to ensure uninterrupted access for people and presence in low Earth orbit.

From the US budget in 2019 $ 150 million will be allocated to the station to develop this idea. To ensure a smooth transition, the White House turned to the private sector in order to get a thorough market analysis and development plans.

Analysts predict that the plan will face stiff opposition. America has already spent $ 100 billion on the launch, operation and support of the orbital station. It is unclear how private companies will be able to profit from the transition to the “aging” ISS, launched in 1998.

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