Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. has been selected by the U.S. Air Force to perform risk reduction work on the next generation of microwave sounding and imaging instruments for the Weather Satellite Follow-on program.
Under a contract awarded by the Space and Missile Systems Center, El Segundo, California, Ball Aerospace will investigate how to best achieve Department of Defense requirements for measuring soil moisture and ocean surface vector winds with a microwave instrument designed to fit into smaller, lower-cost launch vehicles. This effort shares a heritage with the state-of-the-art Global Precipitation Monitoring Microwave Imager (GMI) instrument, which Ball Aerospace built and recently delivered to NASA for the Global Precipitation Measurement mission.
"This risk reduction effort will help the Air Force develop an affordable system for space-based environmental sensing," said Tim Harris , vice president and general manager of Ball Aerospace's National Defense business unit. "Ball's experience with other similar systems lays the foundation to address the nation's highest priority defense weather requirements."
Ball Aerospace has a long history of designing and manufacturing cost effective remote sensing systems for defense, civil and commercial applications. Ball built the satellite bus and the Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite (OMPS) instrument for the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership satellite, NOAA's most recent polar-orbiting weather satellite, and is currently building the satellite bus and an additional copy of OMPS for NOAA's Joint Polar Satellite System. Ball Aerospace also built the Operational Land Imager (OLI) instrument that launched aboard the Landsat Data Continuity Mission on February 11 and began delivering images in March.
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.