updated 11/23/2010 7:16:46 AM ET 2010-11-23T12:16:46

AUSTIN, Texas, Nov. 23, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Astrotech Corporation (Nasdaq:ASTC), a leading provider of commercial aerospace services, today announced that its Astrotech Space Operations subsidiary has won a fully-funded task order under the $35 million Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB) indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contract. The Company will provide facilities and payload processing services from its VAFB location in support of NASA's National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS) Preparatory Project (NPP) mission scheduled to launch October 25, 2011.

Previous missions won under the VAFB IDIQ contract include the Ocean Surface Topography, Interstellar Boundary Explorer, Orbiting Carbon Observatory, GLORY and WISE missions. With the award of the NPP Mission, Astrotech has now been awarded six out of seven of the NASA VAFB IDIQ Missions awarded to date. NPP is a joint mission to extend key measurements in support of long-term monitoring of climate trends and of global biological productivity. The mission will provide atmospheric and sea surface temperatures, humidity sounding, land and ocean biological productivity, and cloud and aerosol properties. 

From Titusville, Florida, Vandenberg Air Force Base, California and the Sea Launch Home Port facilities in Long Beach, California, Astrotech Space Operations provides all support necessary for government and commercial customers to successfully process their satellite hardware for launch, including advance planning; use of unique facilities; and spacecraft checkout, encapsulation, fueling, and transport. In its 29 year history, Astrotech has supported the processing of more than 285 spacecraft without impacting a customer's launch schedule.

About Astrotech Corporation

Astrotech Corporation (Nasdaq:ASTC) is a commercial aerospace company that provides spacecraft payload processing and government services, designs and manufactures space hardware, and commercializes space technologies for use on Earth. The Company serves our government and commercial satellite and spacecraft customers with our pre-launch services from our Astrotech Space Operations (ASO) subsidiary and incubates space technology businesses now focusing on two companies: 1st Detect Corporation, which is developing a mini-mass spectrometer first developed for the International Space Station; and Astrogenetix, Inc., which is developing biotech products in space and has recently developed a vaccine candidate for Salmonella. 

The Astrotech Corporation logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=7456

The statements in this document may contain forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks, trends, and uncertainties that could cause actual results to be materially different from the forward-looking statement. These factors include, but are not limited to, continued government support and funding for key space programs, product performance and market acceptance of products and services, as well as other risk factors and business considerations described in the company's Securities & Exchange Commission filings including the annual report on Form 10-K. Any forward-looking statements in this document should be evaluated in light of these important risk factors. The Company assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

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