The ISS has been in orbit for many years now and in 2024 the US could stop providing federal funding for the space station. That doesn’t mean that the space station will be retired or destroyed though. What Trump is hoping is that after 2024 the space station will become a privately run endeavor.
This is exactly what happened after the US retired the space shuttle fleet. We now have companies like SpaceX sending supplies and the ISS and getting ready to send astronauts into space. The tip that Trump wants the ISS to be a privately-run venture came from a document that The Washington Post obtained.
According to the letter, NASA will expand international and commercial partnerships over the next seven years to ensure that the space station continues and that humans have a presence in low Earth orbit. NASA does plan to ask for $150 million in fiscal year 2019 with more money requested 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.”
Plans for the privatization of the space station will likely run into lots of resistance. Many in Washington aren’t keen to see the end of a government-funded project like the ISS that has seen billions and billions invested.
Some that oppose simply ending funding and deorbiting the ISS might get onboard with a privately funded ISS. NASA is reportedly studying how to extend the life of the ISS to 2028 or beyond. The plan to privatize is also expected to be opposed by the international partners of the station.
SOURCE: Washington Post