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NASA issues Kepler contracts
Posted: Tue, Oct 29, 2002, 10:36 PM ET (0336 GMT)
Kepler spacecraft illustration (NASA/Ames) NASA announced Monday that it has issued contracts worth over $30 million to two companies developing key components for the Kepler planet-finding mission. NASA awarded Ball Aerospace a $28.4 million contract to develop a high-technology camera for the spacecraft, while Eastman Kodak won a $4.5 million contract to provide the entire optical subsystem for the spacecraft. The camera is designed to allow Kepler to observe up to 100,000 stars simultaneously, looking for minute decreases in brightness that could be caused by planets transiting in front of the stars. Kepler, a Discovery-class mission selected by NASA last year, is scheduled for launch in 2007.
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