SpaceX beat Blue Origin and Dynetics to win the contract and become what NASA called its "most trusted private sector partner."
Noura al Matroushi and her male counterpart Mohammed al Mulla will undergo training at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.
Yusaku Maezawa and his band of merry astronauts will become the first lunar voyagers since the last US Apollo mission in 1972, if SpaceX can pull the trip off.
A successful space program could be a game changer both in terms of technological advancement and how the region imagines itself.
A growing number of countries and private companies are developing and expanding their space programs. What does it mean to have so many new actors with extraterrestrial ambitions?
The return capsule touched down in the Siziwang district of Inner Mongolia, in the early hours of Thursday local time, Xinhua said, citing the China National Space Administration.
The Chang'e-5 probe, named after the mythical Chinese moon goddess, collected lunar rocks and soil to help scientists learn more about the moon's origins.
If the return journey is successful, China will be only the third country to have retrieved samples from the Moon, following the US and Soviet Union in the 1960s and 1970s.
If the mission is completed as planned, it would make China the third nation to have retrieved lunar samples after the United States and the Soviet Union.
NASA has discovered molecular water on the lunar surface, trapped within natural glasses or between debris grains. Water is a precious resource and a relatively plentiful lunar presence could prove important to future astronaut and robotic missions.
US Congress will have to sign off on the financing for the project, which has been estimated to cost $28 billion. The project has been set by President Donald Trump as a top priority.
This year's solar eclipse was first visible from the northeastern Republic of Congo and then eastward across Africa and Asia.
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