NASA announced on Monday that President Joe Biden’s administration has committed to extending the International Space Station’s (ISS) operations until 2030, as it continues planning for the transition to the future of space exploration.
In a press release, NASA’s director of the International Space Station, Robyn Gatens, stated the aim of the extension is to maximize returns in “exploration and human research technologies,” as well as “medical and environmental benefits.”
NASA is currently working with the private sector to “develop safe, reliable and cost-effective destinations in space,” which will replace the ISS, according to Phil McAlister, the director of commercial space.
The US will continue to work with its international partners at the European Space Agency, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Canadian Space Agency and Russian State Space Corporation Roscosmos, reflecting the ISS as a “beacon of peaceful international scientific collaboration.”
While the US extended operations until the end of the decade, it has not announced a specific timeline for deorbiting the ISS.
Although NASA has previously said that it is working on plans for scheduled deorbiting and in any event where something goes wrong, as the ISS approaches the end of its lifespan.