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Ball Aerospace Completes Schmidt Corrector Optic Bonding for Kepler
May 30, 2007
BOULDER, CO. - May 30, 2007 – Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. has successfully completed the critical milestone of bonding the Schmidt Corrector optic to its mounting ring for the Kepler Mission. Ball anticipates delivery of all Kepler optics by late-June. The spacecraft integration is scheduled to begin in August 2007, while Kepler photometer integration with the spacecraft will begin in July 2008.
Ball is building both the photometer and spacecraft for the Kepler mission, and will manage system integration and testing. A Discovery mission, Kepler is NASA’s first mission capable of finding Earth-size and smaller planets in the habitable zone of solar-like stars.
Photos accompanying this release are available at www.ballaerospace.com
The photometer consists of a classical Schmidt telescope with an aperture of 95 cm, a primary mirror of 1.4 meters, and an array of 42 CCDs at the focus. It features a focal plane array with more than 95 million pixels that will measure the brightness of 100,000 stars every 30 minutes. The Schmidt optic corrector plate is suspended from its mounting ring 3-meters (10 feet) above the telescope’s primary mirror, and will be used to correct spherical aberration after the telescope is on-orbit.
Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. supports critical missions of important national agencies such as the Department of Defense, NASA, NOAA and other U.S. government and commercial entities. The company develops and manufactures spacecraft, advanced instruments and sensors, components, data exploitation systems and RF solutions for strategic, tactical and scientific applications. Over the past 50 years, Ball Aerospace has been responsible for numerous technological and scientific ‘firsts’ and now acts as a technology innovator for the aerospace market.
Ball Corporation is a supplier of high-quality metal and plastic packaging products for beverage, food and household customers, and of aerospace and other technologies and services, primarily for the U.S. government. Ball Corporation and its subsidiaries employ more than 15,500 people worldwide and reported 2006 sales of $6.6 billion.
This release contains "forward-looking" statements concerning future events and financial performance. Words such as “expects,” “anticipates,” “estimates” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied. The company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Key risks and uncertainties are summarized in filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Exhibit 99.2 in our Form 10-K, which are available at our Web site and at www.sec.gov. Factors that might affect our packaging segments include fluctuation in consumer and customer demand and preferences; availability and cost of raw materials, including recent significant increases in resin, steel, aluminum and energy costs, and the ability to pass such increases on to customers; competitive packaging availability, pricing and substitution; changes in climate and weather; crop yields; industry productive capacity and competitive activity; failure to achieve anticipated productivity improvements or production cost reductions, including those associated with our beverage can end project; the German mandatory deposit or other restrictive packaging laws; changes in major customer or supplier contracts or loss of a major customer or supplier; and changes in foreign exchange rates, tax rates and activities of foreign subsidiaries. Factors that might affect our aerospace segment include: funding, authorization, availability and returns of government and commercial contracts; and delays, extensions and technical uncertainties affecting segment contracts. Factors that might affect the company as a whole include those listed plus: accounting changes; successful or unsuccessful acquisitions, joint ventures or divestitures; integration of recently acquired businesses; regulatory action or laws including tax, environmental and workplace safety; governmental investigations; technological developments and innovations; goodwill impairment; antitrust, patent and other litigation; strikes; labor cost changes; rates of return projected and earned on assets of the company's defined benefit retirement plans; pension changes; reduced cash flow; interest rates affecting our debt; and changes to unaudited results due to statutory audits or other effects.