Now boarding: Space station open for travel

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June 7, 2019 - 4:33 PM

From left, NASA Chief Financial Officer Jeff DeWit, ISS Deputy Director Robyn Gatens and NASA Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations Bill Gerstenmaier speak during a press conference to address the opening of the International Space Station to expanded commercial activities. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images/TNS)

The International Space Station is open for business.

Picture it: A few years down the road, the station may no longer be completely under NASA’s purview, but instead run by a myriad of Earth-based businesses that test their technologies and manufacture things in space, all while sending their private astronauts for stays on the orbiting laboratory.

NASA is laying the groundwork for that future now, with a new policy that outlines the unprecedented opportunities it’ll make available for commercial businesses that want to take advantage of the station’s capabilities.

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