Donald Trump wants to privatize the International Space Station
Despite the constant scrutiny he faces, US President Donald Trump does propose a wild change once in a while. According to reports, internal documents show that Trump wants to privatize the International Space Station and turn it in to a "kind of orbiting real estate venture run not by the government, but by private industry."
It had been known for some time that the White House has plans to cut off funds to the ISS by 2025 to free resources for NASA. Trump wants the space agency to send astronauts to the moon but he wants that to happen on a shoestring budget.
The US government will request $150 million on a budget proposal "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," the documents mentioned. According to Gizmodo, this would mean that NASA would be a client of the theoretical future private space station. It would reverse the current scenario where NASA and its partners manage the station and conduct experiments.
According to the Washington Post, the White House does not have anyone in mind to take control of the space station as of now. The ISS costs the US government almost $100 billion for construction, operation and maintenance charges.
The ISS was primarily designed for research and it is unlikely for the private sector to be thrilled as none would be too happy about the maintenance charges, reports SpaceNews.