Encyclopedia Astronautica
Iris



iris.jpg
Iris
American sounding rocket. Sounding rocket developed by Navy, then handed over to NASA. Flown only four times, but then used in unique Hydra-Iris test series.

The Iris sounding rocket was originally designed by the Naval Research Laboratory to take 45 kg payloads to altitudes of 320 km. It was transferred to NASA with other NRL sounding rockets and flown only four times. It required launch from an Aerobee-like tower, with the seven clustered booster motors burning out and seperating before the upper stage left the tower.

From NASA SOUNDING ROCKETS, 1958-1968 - A Historical Summary, NASA SP-4401, 1971, by William R. Corliss

The development of the Iris sounding rocket had begun at NRL prior to the transfer of its Rocket-Sonde group to NASA. Iris was built by the Atlantic Research Corp. for the Naval Bureau of Ordnance, with NRL monitoring the design, the production, and the payload. The development of the rocket was completed by NASA, with the first NASA firing taking place at Wallops Island on July 22, 1960. In contrast to the monsters in the Argo series, Iris is a small, two-stage, solid-propellant rocket capable of lifting 45 kg (100 lb) to about 320 km (200 mi). NASA has not used the Iris rocket since 1962.

Payload: 45 kg (99 lb) to a 320 km altitude. Failures: 3. Success Rate: 75.00%. First Fail Date: 1961-01-19. Last Fail Date: 1966-10-30. Launch data is: complete.

Status: Retired 1968.
Gross mass: 602 kg (1,327 lb).
Payload: 45 kg (99 lb).
Height: 5.00 m (16.40 ft).
Diameter: 0.31 m (1.01 ft).
Thrust: 17.00 kN (3,821 lbf).
Apogee: 320 km (190 mi).
First Launch: 1960.07.22.
Last Launch: 1962.05.03.
Number: 4 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Iris Sounding rocket developed by the US Navy, then handed over to NASA. Flown only four times, but then used in unique Hydra-Iris test series. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • NRL American manufacturer of rockets and spacecraft. Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, DC, USA. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Emme, Eugene M, Aeronautics and Astronautics: An American Chronology of Science and Technology in the Exploration of Space 1915-1960, NASA, 1961. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Alway, Peter, Rockets of the World, Saturn Press, Ann Arbor, 1995.

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...
  • Wallops Island LA1 Little Joe, Iris, Astrobee, Aerobee, Little Joe 1 2C launch complex. Aerobee Launcher, Launch Area 1 More...

Associated Stages
  • Iris-0 Solid rocket stage. 84.00 kN (18,884 lbf) thrust. Mass 100 kg (220 lb). More...

Iris Chronology


1960 July 22 - . 12:05 GMT - . Launch Site: Wallops Island. Launch Complex: Wallops Island LA1. LV Family: Iris. Launch Vehicle: Iris. LV Configuration: Iris NASA 5.01GT.
  • Aeronomy / test - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 224 km (139 mi). Summary: First flight of NASA's Iris sounding rocket successful..

1960 October 18 - . 14:17 GMT - . Launch Site: Wallops Island. Launch Complex: Wallops Island LA1. LV Family: Iris. Launch Vehicle: Iris. LV Configuration: Iris NASA 5.02GT.
  • Aeronomy / test - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 225 km (139 mi). Summary: Second Iris rocket rose to 225 km with a payload of 56 kg from Wallops Station..

1961 January 19 - . 12:42 GMT - . Launch Site: Wallops Island. Launch Complex: Wallops Island LA1. LV Family: Iris. Launch Vehicle: Iris. LV Configuration: Iris NASA 5.03GT. FAILURE: Failure.
  • Aeronomy / test - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 138 km (85 mi).

1962 May 3 - . 18:03 GMT - . Launch Site: Wallops Island. Launch Complex: Wallops Island LA1. LV Family: Iris. Launch Vehicle: Iris. LV Configuration: Iris NASA 5.04GA.
  • Structure Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 113 km (70 mi).

Home - Browse - Contact
© / Conditions for Use