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Boulder-built instrument key to satellite mission

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BOULDER, Colo. (AP) - A new satellite carrying critical instrumentation developed in Boulder is scheduled to be launched from Japan on Thursday.

Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. developed, designed and is providing launch support for what it calls the Global Precipitation Measurement Microwave Imager, one of the prime instruments aboard a joint NASA-Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency mission. Engineers say the satellite could give forecasters far greater ability to predict severe weather.

Project manager Don Figgins tells The Daily Camera (http://bit.ly/1en9pWb ) the satellite will provide global coverage "that is going to provide detailed observations of global precipitation every three hours, with a higher resolution."

The satellite, designed for a three-and-a-half-year mission, will be launched from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan at 11 a.m. MDT on Thursday.

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Information from: Daily Camera, http://www.dailycamera.com/

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