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Watch as NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission attempts to grab a sample from an asteroid

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This afternoon, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will grab a small sample of rocks from the surface of an asteroid named Bennu zooming through space more than 200 million miles from Earth. It’s an ambitious task, but if it works, OSIRIS-REx may eventually return to Earth with the largest sample of material from another space body since NASA’s Apollo missions to the Moon.

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has been circling Bennu for the last two years, mapping its surface and hunting for the right spot to snag these rocks. After an intense amount of planning from the mission team, the engineers have a target all picked out on Bennu and are ready to send their spacecraft down to the surface. OSIRIS-REx will lightly touch the surface of Bennu with an extended robotic arm, which will then blast air onto the rocks and stir things up. The blast should send pebbles and dust up into the arm. The rubble will then be stored inside the spacecraft for the long journey home.

The OSIRIS-REx team has already uploaded the commands to their spacecraft to pull off the maneuver this afternoon at 6:12PM ET. Everything must be on autopilot for this sample grab, since OSIRIS-REx and Bennu are so far from Earth. Radio signals take more than 18 minutes to reach the spacecraft, so if anything were to go wrong during the procedure, ground controllers wouldn’t be able correct the problem quickly. But OSIRIS-REx has practiced for this moment, doing two dress rehearsals that entailed descending down to the surface of Bennu without actually touching it. Today, the vehicle will hopefully make contact.

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Things get underway at 1:45PM ET, when OSIRIS-REx stops orbiting Bennu and begins its slow descent to the asteroid’s surface. “This is much more of a four and a half hours of mild anxiousness,” Beth Buck, the mission operations program manager for OSIRIS-REx at Lockheed Martin, said during a press conference. The spacecraft should only make contact with Bennu for a mere five seconds, but it should be enough time to trap a sizable amount of material inside the vehicle’s arm. It’s going to be a while before we can confirm if OSIRIS-REx succeeded, though. The mission team hopes to get data back tonight that will verify whether the spacecraft touched the asteroid, but they won’t know until tomorrow if the vehicle actually retrieved a sample. The first images of the sampling will start to come in on Wednesday, and that should confirm if OSIRIS-REx grabbed anything.

Though we won’t be able to see the sample live, NASA is providing live coverage of the sample grab starting at 5PM ET, from inside Lockheed Martin’s control center. Additionally, you can track the progress of OSIRIS-REx on the mission’s website starting at around 1:20PM ET.

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Charge Your Phone Wirelessly With 50% off a Multifunctional LED Lamp

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

White Wireless Charge Lamp | $18 | Amazon | Clip coupon + code ABC88699
Black Wireless Charger Lamp | $20 | Amazon | Promo code ABC88699

When you’re ready to turn in for the night, you don’t want to forget to charge your phone— especially if your mobile device doubles as your alarm clock.

With this wireless charger lamp, you can make this crucial step of your nightly routine even easier by just setting your phone on the wireless charging pad and… well, that’s all there is to it!

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Other functions include multiple lighting modes as well as a sleep timer option for auto shut-off of the light after 30 or 60 minutes.

This lamp can be yours in white for $18 if you clip the coupon on Amazon (it’s below the original $40 price) and add promo code ABC88699 at checkout.

You can snag the black version for $20 using the same code—no coupon though, sorry.

Don’t sleep on this deal! Who knows how long stock or the coupon code will last?

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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