(Hawthorne, CA) -- NASA is picking SpaceX to take astronauts to the moon.  

The Washington Post reports Elon Musk's company beat out bids by Blue Origin and Dynetics for the nearly three-billion-dollar contract.  

The space agency hopes to put astronauts back on the surface of the moon for the first time since it ended the Apollo mission in 1972.  

The new exploration program is being called Artemis.