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White House Eyes End of Funding for Space Station
28 January 2018, 12:36 | Shelley Chandler
President Trump Plans to End ISS Funding by 2025
NASA astronauts step out on a spacewalk to fix the robotic arm at the International Space Station. However, the simple fact that it contains details that include ending support for the ISS in 2025 suggests that there is a sentiment of that nature in the White House. After 2024, what happens to ISS is anyone's guess. But in a brief and strongly worded statementNASA said it is "committed to full scientific and technical research on the orbiting laboratory, as it is the foundation on which we will extend human presence deeper into space". We will not comment on any leaked or pre-decisional documents prior to the release of the President's FY19 budget, which is scheduled for February 12."A necessary global orbital laboratory The ISS can be home for up to six people at a time, and astronauts have lived in space every day since 2000, conducting research that could not be done on Earth".
A draft budget document for the agency's fiscal year 2019 budget proposal calls for "ending direct federal government support of the ISS by 2025" as one of several items meant to implement Space Policy Directive 1, the executive order signed by President Trump Dec. 11 directing NASA to return humans to the moon.
The last budget approval and extenesion came from the Obama administration where the budget was extended by 10 years in 2014, all the way to 2024.
But will these private companies, like SpaceX and Boeing, be ready to take over operations in that part of space without the significant government support provided to the Space Station? But according to The Verge, "canceling the ISS too early without a viable replacement could lead to a gap of human activities in lower Earth orbit". Many of NASA's partners are not now signed on to continue supporting our space program past 2024 with the help of an Obama-era extension, and this budget proposal doesn't exactly encourage them to continue the relationship. After that, the future of the 20 year International Space Station is up in the air. By 2025, the Presidents wants to cut off money for the space station. Popular Mechanics reported that officials from NASA and other space agencies gathered in Tokyo over the past few days to plan for construction in the 2020s.
To compensate for the lack of space shuttles, the plan was to get private companies involved. The administration also seeks to establish a space station, called Deep Space Gateway, in the vicinity of the moon.
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