Elon Musk unveils first tourist for SpaceX 'Moon loop'

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Musk previously hinted the passenger for the next-generation BFR (politely known as the Big Falcon Rocket) might be Japanese.

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has posted new photos and comments teasing the company's imminent BFR and lunar tourism update, showing off a few more angles of the spaceship upper stage's new design ahead of a dedicated event later today.

Maezawa, 42, will take his trip round the moon in SpaceX's Big Falcon Rocket (BFR) spaceship and will be the first man to travel to earth's only natural satellite since the U.S. ended its Apollo missions in 1972.

While the trip is a fly-by, meaning that there will be no actual moon landing, this is still immensely significant. The Big Falcon Rocket boasts 31 Raptor engines with seven honeycomb arranged engines.

Had SpaceX followed through with that plan, it could have returned humans to the moon near the 50th anniversary of NASA's historic Apollo 8 mission around the moon in December 1968.

In terms of when the launch will take place, things are also in the dark.

On Monday, Mr Musk unveiled new artist impressions of the BFR and the spaceship which will carry passengers around the Moon.

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SpaceX's CEO is clearly chomping at the bit to reveal more information about the company's newest BFR iteration, hopefully now closing in on something close to what will actually enter production and begin flight testing.

This isn't the first time Musk has vowed to send tourists around the Moon.

It's worth remembering that even a rocket beginning integrated systems tests - expected to commence with BFR as early as late 2019 - can end up looking and being nearly nothing like the vehicle that ultimately rolls off the assembly line and launches real missions.

Going to the Moon could be far quicker.

Whatever the details, SpaceX is touting an experience considerably more ambitious than space tourism plans under development by other private companies.

Virgin's trip will cost about $250,000.

Two high executives announced departures from Tesla, and the diver sued Musk on Monday. Two years later would mark the last time NASA astronauts would visit the lunar surface.