There's a real space race going on between Boeing and SpaceX, and all of that involves a small American flag.
For seven years, we rely on Russia to go to international space station. Boeing wants to be the first company to carry American astronauts there next summer, as well as SpaceX. Both companies will operate competing space taxis for NASA, reports Mark Strassman of CBS.
If you arrive there first, you will have the chance to solemnly hold back a small American flag that was left behind in 201
"The next astronaut starting from American soil docking at the space station would bring the flag home," he told CBS Mark Strassman. Boeing makes a capsule that will carry Ferguson and NASA astronauts Nicole Mann and Eric Boe, meaning that Ferguson could find the same flag he left behind.
CONNECTION: Can the Northwest compete in the upcoming space race?
That is, unless SpaceX arrives there first. The company is currently developing its own ship, Crew Dragon, to carry NASA astronaut Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the space station. Hurley piloted the flight that brought the flag to first place.
"I have no problem with healthy competition," Hurley told CBS. "It makes you better and it makes you better and it makes both companies better. And who benefits in the end? The country. We get a redundant access to space.
A recent Puget Sound Regional Council study concluded that "the state of Washington and the central region of Puget Sound lead the exploration and development of commercial space" with approximately 6,221 jobs supported throughout the economy.
Whether Boeing or SpaceX is there first, it's safe to say that the astronauts will do a little more than raise a tiny flag.