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Ball Aerospace Donates Wernher von Braun Photo to Space & Rocket Center Archive

October 7, 2013

Click here for a high-res image.

The father of the American space program, Wernher von Braun, center, observes progress on one of four Skylab science instruments built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., while visiting Boulder in 1968.

Historic Skylab image submitted to rocket scientist’s vast collection of documents
Huntsville, Ala., Oct. 7, 2013 – Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo., will donate a historic photo of Dr. Wernher Von Braun to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, Huntsville, Ala., during a special ceremony in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of Skylab.

Von Braun, credited as the “Father of the American Space Program” visited Boulder in 1968 when he was center director for the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). At Ball he met with engineers who were designing four Skylab science instruments: the Extreme Ultraviolet spectrograph; Extreme Ultraviolet Spectroheliograph; White Light Coronagraph; and the Extreme Ultraviolet Spectrometer-Spectroheliometer.

Skylab, a predecessor to the International Space Station, launched on May 14, 1973 and was the nation's first foray into significant scientific research in microgravity. For nine months, the three Skylab crews participated in missions of 28, 59 and 84 days, and proved humans could live and work effectively for long durations in space.

Ball worked with the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), the High Altitude Observatory (now NCAR) and the Harvard College Observatory to develop the instruments. The Ball instruments were praised by NASA officials as being “remarkable” in that they “pushed the state of the art” of solar studies.

Astronaut Rusty Schweickart was the backup commander of the first Skylab mission, responsible for developing extra-vehicular activities procedures and techniques used to successfully retrieve and replace the solar film for MSFC’s Apollo Telescope Mount that hosted Ball’s four observational Skylab instruments. “Thanks to Ball (and a few others) we got great pics of the Sun and its shenanigans,” said Schweickart.

Von Braun proposed the idea for a Huntsville Space and Rocket Center in 1960. The center’s archives include a wide assortment of historically-significant personal, technical and administrative documents, including the vast Von Braun collection of papers used by researchers and scholars. The Space & Rocket Center is home to Space Camp and Aviation Challenge and recognized as one of the most comprehensive U.S. manned space flight hardware museums in the world.

Ball’s donation ceremony at the Space & Rocket Center will begin at 5:15 p.m., followed by the 25th Annual Dr. Wernher von Braun Memorial Dinner at the Center’s Davidson Center for Space Exploration.

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

Ball Corporation (NYSE: BLL) supplies innovative, sustainable packaging solutions for beverage, food and household products customers, as well as aerospace and other technologies and services primarily for the U.S. government. Ball Corporation and its subsidiaries employ 15,000 people worldwide and reported 2012 sales of more than $8.7 billion. For more information, visit, or connect with us on Facebook or Twitter.

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 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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