NASA is reportedly in talks with a number of companies to turn the International Space Station into a commercial space laboratory.
“We’re in a position now where there are people out there that can do commercial management of the International Space Station,” claimed NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, according to the Washington Post. “I’ve talked to many large corporations that are interested in getting involved in that through a consortium, if you will.”
Though Bridenstine refused to name any potential commercial entities who could manage the International Space Station, and added it may be “hard to close the business case,” he noted that the White House has “forced the conversation.”
The Aerospace Industries Association’s Vice President of Space Systems, Frank Slazer, however, believes Bridenstine’s vision would be “very hard” to achieve.
“It will be very hard to turn ISS into a truly commercial outpost because of the international agreements that the United States is involved in,” he expressed. “It’s inherently always going to be an international construct that requires U.S. government involvement and multinational cooperation.”