Encyclopedia Astronautica
Black Brant 3B


Canadian sounding rocket.

AKA: Black Brant IIIB.
Status: Retired 1985.
Gross mass: 300 kg (660 lb).
Height: 5.50 m (18.00 ft).
Diameter: 0.26 m (0.85 ft).
Apogee: 220 km (130 mi).
First Launch: 1969.02.28.
Last Launch: 1985.05.06.
Number: 13 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Black Brant The Black Brant originated in a 1957 Canadian government requirement for a sounding rocket to characterize the ionosphere in order to improve military communications. Bristol Aerospace of Winnipeg, Manitoba was selected to design the rocket, while the Canadian Armament Research and Development Establishment (CARDE) was responsible for the propellant and filling. The lighter production version of the vehicle was renamed Black Brant. Later versions of Black Brant used a variety of booster and upper stages to supplement the original single-stage vehicle. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Bristol Canadian manufacturer of rocket engines and rockets. Bristol Aerospace Limited, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. More...

Associated Launch Sites
  • Wallops Island Small NASA launch site for sounding rocket launches and occasional Scout launches to orbit. Air launches are conducted from the Drop Zone Wallops Island, 37.00 N 72.0 W. With the last orbital launch in 1985 and the decline in sounding rocket launches, Wallops fell into near-disuse as a launch center. Its fortunes revised with the establishment of Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in 2005 and orbital launches resumed in 2010. More...
  • Fort Churchill Fort Churchill is an Arctic site on Hudson Bay with a rail link. It is near the point of maximum auroral activity. This combination of circumstances made it ideal for far-north sounding rocket launches. In 1954, the Canadian Army conducted the first series of rocket firings at Fort Churchill. Following a period of inactivity, construction of more elaborate facilities in support of the International Geophysical Year began in 1956. IGY firings began in July 1957. The range was closed again in December 1958 after the IGY program ended. It was reopened again in August 1959 by the US Army as part of its network of sounding rocket stations. This allowed use of the site by other groups over the years. More...
  • Resolute Bay Sounding rocket launch location known to have been used for 17 launches from 1966 to 1971, reaching up to 200 kilometers altitude. More...
  • Gillam Sounding rocket launch location known to have been used for 2 launches from 1972 to 1973, reaching up to 200 kilometers altitude. More...

Associated Stages
  • 12KS10000 Solid rocket stage. 45.00 kN (10,116 lbf) thrust. Mass 300 kg (661 lb). More...

Black Brant 3B Chronology


1969 February 28 - . 18:57 GMT - . Launch Site: Wallops Island. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB NASA 12.04GT.
  • Test mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 215 km (133 mi).

1969 May 1 - . 20:26 GMT - . Launch Site: Wallops Island. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB NASA 12.15GT.
  • Test mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 215 km (133 mi).

1969 October 25 - . 06:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Resolute Bay. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AKF-3B-50.
  • Soft X-ray survey X-ray astronomy mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 192 km (119 mi).

1969 October 26 - . 06:40 GMT - . Launch Site: Resolute Bay. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAF-3B-51.
  • Soft X-ray survey X-ray astronomy mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 197 km (122 mi).

1969 November 3 - . 10:28 GMT - . Launch Site: Resolute Bay. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAF-3B-48.
  • Aurora / chemical release mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 200 km (120 mi).

1969 November 5 - . 11:18 GMT - . Launch Site: Resolute Bay. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAF-3B-49.
  • Aurora / chemical release mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 200 km (120 mi).

1971 September 4 - . 13:52 GMT - . Launch Site: Resolute Bay. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB NASA 22.01UE.
  • Plasma mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 150 km (90 mi).

1972 January 15 - . 05:37 GMT - . Launch Site: Gillam. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAF-3B-53.
  • Auroral mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 190 km (110 mi).

1972 December 1 - . 01:23 GMT - . Launch Site: Fort Churchill. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AND-3B-63.
  • Microwave background Submillimeter radio astronomy mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 185 km (114 mi).

1973 February 2 - . 06:15 GMT - . Launch Site: Gillam. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAF-3B-67.
  • Auroral mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 200 km (120 mi).

1973 February 22 - . 03:49 GMT - . Launch Site: Fort Churchill. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAD-3B-64.
  • Auroral plasma Aeronomy mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 207 km (128 mi).

1973 February 24 - . 07:20 GMT - . Launch Site: Fort Churchill. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB AAD-3B-65.
  • Auroral plasma Aeronomy mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 190 km (110 mi).

1985 May 6 - . 22:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Fort Churchill. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 3B. LV Configuration: Black Brant IIIB ARS-3B-70.
  • SMERF 2 (Ozone) Aeronomy mission - . Nation: Canada. Agency: NRCC. Apogee: 114 km (70 mi).

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