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Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., a unit of Ball Corporation (BLL - Analyst Report), has begun the integration phase for Worldview-3, the next generation commercial remote-sensing satellite. The satellite, which is being built for DigitalGlobe, is scheduled to be launched in mid-2014.

Ball Aerospace in association with DigitalGlobe, had delivered advanced imaging satellites, including WorldView-2, WorldView-1 and QuickBird. Worldview-3 is based upon the WorldView-2 and WorldView-1 technology. It will carry forward the satellite's advanced control moment gyroscopes (CMGs). The integration including CMGs and the propulsion module is currently in progress.

Worldview-3 is the third satellite in the series of Ball Commercial Platform (BCP) 5000, especially designed for cost-effective remote sensing applications. WorldView-3 will be a highly capable spacecraft based on a low risk design.

The U.S. government has brought certain restrictions for non-U.S. government customers regarding DigitalGlobe's infrared imagery, which are limited to 50 centimeters panchromatic, 2.0 meter multispectral or, 7.5 meter Short Wave Infrared (SWIR). WorldView-3, in line with the limitations, will offer 31 centimeter resolution panchromatic, 1.24 meter resolution eight-band multispectral and 3.72 meter resolution eight-band SWIR imagery.

WorldView-3 is having its unique capacity to sense both the visible spectrum as well as the infrared spectrum and will provide a rich dataset to DigitalGlobe. The technology will precisely identify different manmade and natural materials. The satellite will be launched after a successful sensor integration, inspection and environmental testing.

DigitalGlobe, which is a leading provider of high-resolution earth imagery solutions, will have the largest high resolution satellite imagery collection capacity in the industry with Worldview-3.

Broomfield, Colo.-based Ball Corp., which belongs to the containers and packaging industry along with Greif, Inc. (GEF - Snapshot Report), Mobile Mini, Inc. (MINI - Snapshot Report) and Crown Holdings Inc. (CCK - Analyst Report)), is the largest manufacturer of beverage cans in North America. It also supplies aerospace and other technologies and offers services to government and commercial customers.

Ball Corp. currently retains a short-term Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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