Ball To Carry AF Payloads For Plasma, Solar Study; David Taylor Comments

Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. will carry five payloads and a de-orbit module onboard a spacecraft the company will launch in 2013, the company announced Tuesday.

President and CEO David Taylor said in a release the company built the STPSat-3 spacecraft for the U.S. Air Force in 47 days.

He added the vehicle will carry two more experiment and risk reduction payloads than the previously launched STPSat-2 in 2010.

The STPSat-3 payloads will include tools for measuring plasma densities and energies, space phenomenology and risk reduction through on-orbit testing and operation of sensory assembly.

STPSat-3 will also carry a wind and temperature spectrometer to provide measurements of neutral and plasma environments and a payload that will collect measurements of total solar irradiance.

In addition, the spacecraft’s de-orbit Module can also be used to de-orbit the satellite in less than 25 years, the company said.

Ball Aerospace also built a spacecraft for NASA to locate asteroids near Earth and the agency has found nearly 4,700 of the asteroids as of May.

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