Encyclopedia Astronautica
Black Colt


American manned spaceplane. Study 1993. Winged, first stage of a launch vehicle using aerial refueling and existing engines.

Takes off from runway; rendezvous with tanker to load oxidizer; then flies to Mach 12/150 nm to release Star 48V second stage and 450 kg payload. In comparison to Black Horse, uses existing engines and a much more achievable mass fraction by only flying to half orbital speed.

Crew Size: 1.

Gross mass: 43,160 kg (95,150 lb).
Height: 48.00 m (157.00 ft).
Thrust: 402.05 kN (90,385 lbf).

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Associated Countries
See also
Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Black Colt American air-launched orbital launch vehicle. Winged, first stage of a launch vehicle using aerial refueling and existing engines. Takes off from runway; rendezvous with tanker to load oxidizer; then flies to Mach 12/150 nm to release Star 48V second stage and 450 kg payload. In comparison to Black Horse, uses existing engines and a much more achievable mass fraction by only flying to half orbital speed. More...

Bibliography
  • Zubrin, Robert M, and Clapp, Mitchell B, "Black Horse: One Stop to Orbit", Black Horse Web Site, Web Address when accessed: here.

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