BOULDER, Colo., Jan. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. announced today that operational control of the Space Test Program Satellite-3 ( STPSat-3) has been handed over to the U.S. Air Force as the spacecraft begins its technology demonstration mission.
The Ball-built STPSat-3 launched from Wallops Flight Center in Virginia on November 19, 2013 aboard a Minotaur I, along with 28 CubeSats as part of the Operationally Responsive Space-3 (ORS-3) mission. The spacecraft was fully checked out and operational within 71 hours of launch, nearly three hours ahead of schedule.Ball designed the Standard Interface Vehicle (SIV), a common spacecraft bus with standard payload interfaces to accelerate Department of Defense space technology demonstrations and to ensure future U.S. space superiority. STPSat-3 is the second SIV developed by Ball which is now part of the company's Ball Configurable Platform (BCP) spacecraft line. Assembled in only 47 days, STPSat-3 repeatedly demonstrated its ability to add or remove payloads even after the spacecraft bus was completed. Roughly the size of a mini refrigerator, the satellite carries five technology demonstration payloads and a de-orbit module for the Department of Defense, NASA and NOAA. "We designed the SIV architecture to reduce the cost and time required to access space while maximizing the opportunities for suitable payloads," said Dave Kaufman, vice president and general manager of Ball's National Defense business unit. "STPSat-3's predecessor, STPSat-2, just passed its three-year anniversary on orbit and has proven the robustness of the SIV design." 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) 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 www.ball.com, 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 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 in our Form 10-K, which are available on our website and at www.sec.gov. Factors that might affect: a) our packaging segments include product demand fluctuations; availability/cost of raw materials; competitive packaging, pricing and substitution; changes in climate and weather; crop yields; competitive activity; failure to achieve productivity improvements or 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 or tax rates; b) our aerospace segment include funding, authorization, availability and returns of government and commercial contracts; and delays, extensions and technical uncertainties affecting segment contracts; c) the company as a whole include those listed plus: changes in senior management; successful or unsuccessful acquisitions and divestitures; regulatory action or issues including tax, environmental, health and workplace safety, including U.S. FDA and other actions or public concerns affecting products filled in our containers, or chemicals or substances used in raw materials or in the manufacturing process; technological developments and innovations; litigation; strikes; labor cost changes; rates of return on assets of the company's defined benefit retirement plans; pension changes; uncertainties surrounding the U.S. government budget, sequestration and debt limit; reduced cash flow; ability to achieve cost-out initiatives; interest rates affecting our debt. SOURCE Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.