It has now been revealed that US-China Rivalry has led to development in Space.
The rivalry is spurring huge investment by Nasa. In the year to the end of September 2021 the agency says its spending was worth $71.2bn to the US economy – a 10.7% increase on the year before.
While big names like SpaceX might attract the headlines, Nasa’s spending reaches much further into the economy.
“A quarter of our spending is going to small businesses,” says Mr Nelson.
That money can accelerate the growth of small firms, particularly start-ups, says Sinead O’Sullivan, a former Nasa engineer and now space economist at Harvard Business School.
The government often acts as a first customer to start-up firms and those contracts can allow them to approach private investors and raise even more money, she says.
“A lot of the time we talk about venture capital and private equity, however, governments are equally if not more important,” Ms O’Sullivan says.