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Ball Aerospace Ships Microwave Imager for NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement Mission

March 1, 2012

BOULDER, Colo. – Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. has shipped the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Microwave Imager (GMI) to Goddard Space Flight Center for integration with the spacecraft.

The GMI instrument will play an essential role in the worldwide measurement of precipitation and the Earth's environmental forecasting when it launches aboard the GPM space-borne Core Observatory in 2014. The GPM mission is a joint effort between NASA, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and other international partners.

“The outstanding team working on the GPM mission is collaborating successfully to bring this scientifically important project ever closer to launch,” said Cary Ludtke, Vice President and General Manager for Ball’s Civil and Operational Space business unit.
The GPM mission will improve climate, weather and hydrological predictions by providing more accurate precipitation measurements from space.

"Together with the radar flying on the Core satellite, the GMI will provide a unique database to characterize precipitating particles in different parts of the world, something that is currently not possible. This database is key to obtaining unified and accurate precipitation data from the entire GPM constellation of radiometers," said Arthur Hou, GPM Project Scientist at NASA Goddard.

A video accompanying this release is available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F7knP2Kg55c&feature=youtu.be

Ball Aerospace’s role in the GPM program included the design, development and fabrication of the GMI. Roughly eight feet tall, the conical-scan microwave instrument is a powerhouse of radiometry. GMI is designed to improve on-orbit calibration and advanced space-borne radiometry by rotating at 32 revolutions per minute, using four very stable calibration points on each revolution to calibrate the data it has scanned. This allows for temporal sampling of rainfall accumulations as well as more frequent and higher quality data collection.

GMI’s design is based on successful microwave sensors built previously by Ball Aerospace including the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM), Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C (SIR-C), GEOSAT Follow-On (GFO) and the Submillimeter Wave Astronomy Satellite (SWAS).

Following launch, Ball Aerospace will provide post-delivery support at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and launch site as well as post launch support.
Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. supports critical missions for 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. For more information visit www.ballaerospace.com.

Ball Corporation (NYSE:BLL) is a supplier of high quality packaging for beverage, food and household products customers, and of aerospace and other technologies and services, primarily for the U.S. government. Ball Corporation and its subsidiaries employ more than 14,500 people worldwide and reported 2011 sales of more than $8.6 billion. For the latest Ball news and for other company information, please visit http://www.ball.com.

 

Forward-Looking Statements
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 on our website and at www.sec.gov. Factors that might affect our packaging segments include fluctuation in product demand and preferences; availability and cost of raw materials; competitive packaging availability, pricing and substitution; changes in climate and weather; crop yields; competitive activity; failure to achieve anticipated productivity improvements or production cost reductions; mandatory deposit or other restrictive packaging laws; changes in major customer or supplier contracts or loss of a major customer or supplier; political instability and sanctions; and changes in foreign exchange rates or tax rates. 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; changes in senior management; the recent global recession and its effects on liquidity, credit risk, asset values and the economy; successful or unsuccessful acquisitions; regulatory action or laws including tax, environmental, health and workplace safety, including U.S. FDA and other actions affecting products filled in our containers, or chemicals or substances used in raw materials or in the manufacturing process; 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; uncertainties surrounding the U.S. government budget and debt limit; reduced cash flow; interest rates affecting our debt; and changes to unaudited results due to statutory audits or other effects.

 

 

 

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