The asteroid is currently around 300 million kilometres (186 million miles) away from Earth.
Scientists say that the samples, which the Japanese probe will try to collect, may shed light on how the Solar System was created and how life appeared on Earth.
We will have a live web stream during #haya2_TD touchdown from 6:45 — 9:15 JST on February 22nd! https://t.co/T1Gz2hFsqT— HAYABUSA2@JAXA (@haya2e_jaxa) February 21, 2019
(with English translation.)
You can also ask us questions with the hashtag #haya2_QA (though we apologise if we cannot answer them all).
After touching down on the surface of the Ryugu asteroid, the lander transmitted the signal that it had collected the first samples from the asteroid for their subsequent delivery to Earth and had taken off to the orbit to stay there until the next touchdown, the Japanese space agency JAXA said on later.
The agency said that the robot had injected a metal bullet into the asteroid’s soil in order to release material and then passively collect the samples through a sampler horn.