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Defunding space station could mean the rise of space hotels

After President Trump ended government funding for the International Space Station by 2025 — the station could be turned into space hotels.

“There are lots of potential uses,” Jeffrey Hoffman, a former astronaut and Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor, told NBC News. “Other partners could continue scientific investigations. Private enterprise could turn it into a space hotel.”

A Russian space agency proposed building a luxury hotel on the station — which is funded by NASA — and tourists who’d like to go would have to fork out $40 million per person for the entire trip.

U.S. hotel billionaire Robert Bigelow announced his new company, Bigelow Space Operations, on Tuesday. The first two space hotels are set to launch in 2021.

Budget may end support for International Space Station by 2025

NASA archive photos

NASA documents obtained by the Washington Post showed Trump’s plan doesn’t intend to abandon the station’s space lab.

“The decision to end direct federal support for the ISS in 2025 does not imply that the platform itself will be deorbited at that time — it is possible that industry could continue to operate certain elements or capabilities of the ISS as part of a future commercial platform,” the document reads. “NASA will expand international and commercial partnerships over the next seven years in order to ensure continued human access to and presence in low Earth orbit.”

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