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NASA should extend ISS life until at least 2028: US Senators

IANS  |  Washington 

should extend the life of the (ISS) until at least 2028, two US Senators said in a hearing to examine the future of the orbiting laboratory.

Senator of who is the of the Subcommittee on Space, Science, convened the hearing on Wednesday, which was the first in a series of two hearings to examine the role of the

In its 2019 budget request, the proposed ending direct government funding for the ISS by 2025, Today, part of network, reported on Wednesday.

"We've got this platform up there (worth) north of $100 billion, and it's there," Senator of Florida, ranking member on the Subcommittee on Space, and Competitiveness, was quoted as saying.

"Abandoning this incredible orbiting laboratory where they are doing research, when we are on the cusp of a new era of space exploration, would be irresponsible at best and probably disastrous," Nelson added.

The Transition Authorization Act of 2017 directed to develop a plan to transition ISS from the current regime that relies heavily on NASA sponsorship to a regime where NASA could be one of many customers of a low-Earth orbit (LEO) non-governmental human space flight enterprise.

The aim was to save mony so that more resources could invested into deep space exploration of the Moon and eventually Mars.

The space agency's internal watchdog on Wednesday, however, said that private companies are unlikely to take on the more than $1 billion annual cost to run the by 2025 as NASA hopes.

The report from NASA provided a closing argument against the Trump administration's proposal to privatise or abandon the orbiting laboratory so soon, the US senators said, according to the Today report.

"The defence rests," quipped Senator Cruz of

--IANS

gb/vm

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, May 17 2018. 13:38 IST
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