Encyclopedia Astronautica
Scout A



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Scout A
Scout A - COSPAR 1967-042
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Scout
Credit: © Mark Wade
American all-solid orbital launch vehicle. All-solid low cost lightweight launch vehicle.

LEO Payload: 122 kg (268 lb) to a 185 km orbit in 1985 dollars. Flyaway Unit Cost $: 8.610 million.

Stage Data - Scout A

  • Stage 1. 1 x Algol 2. Gross Mass: 11,600 kg (25,500 lb). Empty Mass: 1,650 kg (3,630 lb). Thrust (vac): 564.245 kN (126,847 lbf). Isp: 255 sec. Burn time: 47 sec. Isp(sl): 232 sec. Diameter: 1.01 m (3.31 ft). Span: 1.01 m (3.31 ft). Length: 9.09 m (29.82 ft). Propellants: Solid. No Engines: 1. Engine: Algol 2. Status: Out of Production.
  • Stage 2. 1 x Castor 2. Gross Mass: 4,424 kg (9,753 lb). Empty Mass: 695 kg (1,532 lb). Thrust (vac): 258.915 kN (58,206 lbf). Isp: 262 sec. Burn time: 37 sec. Isp(sl): 232 sec. Diameter: 0.79 m (2.59 ft). Span: 0.79 m (2.59 ft). Length: 6.04 m (19.81 ft). Propellants: Solid. No Engines: 1. Engine: TX-354-3. Status: In Production.
  • Stage 3. 1 x Antares 2. Gross Mass: 1,400 kg (3,000 lb). Empty Mass: 300 kg (660 lb). Thrust (vac): 93.094 kN (20,928 lbf). Isp: 293 sec. Burn time: 36 sec. Isp(sl): 233 sec. Diameter: 0.78 m (2.55 ft). Span: 0.78 m (2.55 ft). Length: 2.90 m (9.50 ft). Propellants: Solid. No Engines: 1. Engine: X-259. Status: Out of Production.
  • Stage 4. 1 x Altair 2. Gross Mass: 275 kg (606 lb). Empty Mass: 37 kg (81 lb). Thrust (vac): 22.241 kN (5,000 lbf). Isp: 266 sec. Burn time: 28 sec. Isp(sl): 242 sec. Diameter: 0.64 m (2.09 ft). Span: 0.64 m (2.09 ft). Length: 2.53 m (8.30 ft). Propellants: Solid. No Engines: 1. Engine: X-258. Status: Out of Production.

Gross mass: 17,850 kg (39,350 lb).
Payload: 122 kg (268 lb).
Height: 25.00 m (82.00 ft).
Diameter: 1.01 m (3.31 ft).
Thrust: 513.40 kN (115,417 lbf).
Apogee: 185 km (114 mi).
First Launch: 1965.12.22.
Last Launch: 1970.08.27.
Number: 11 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • Transit American navigation satellite. 46 launches, 1959.09.17 (Transit 1A) to 1988.08.25 (Transit O-31). The Transit Navigation System began development in 1958. More...
  • Ariel American earth magnetosphere satellite. 6 launches, 1962.04.26 (Ariel 1) to 1979.06.02 (Ariel 6). Ionospheric studies; returned X-ray, ionospheric, cosmic ray data. More...
  • Owl American earth ionosphere satellite. 2 launches, 1967.05.18 (Transit 16) to 1967.09.25 (Transit 17). More...

Associated Engines
  • Algol 2 CSD solid rocket engine. 564.2 kN. Isp=255s. Used on Scout A, Scout B, Scout X-3, Scout X-4; proposed as strap-on for Titan 3BAS2. First flight 1962. More...
  • TX-354-3 Thiokol solid rocket engine. 258.9 kN. Used in Scout A; Delta E; H-1-0; Castor 2. License built in Japan for H-1. Isp=262s. First flight 1960. More...
  • X-258 Thiokol solid rocket engine. 22.2 kN. Isp=266s. Kick stage motor for Delta D, Scout A, Scout X-4. First flight 1963. More...
  • X-259 Thiokol solid rocket engine. 93.1 kN. Isp=293s. Used on Scout A, Scout B, Scout D, Scout F, Scout X-2, Scout X-3, Scout X-4. First flight 1962. More...

See also
  • Scout Solid-fuel, light payload, lower-cost launch vehicle developed by the Air Force and NASA in the late 1950's and used in a variety of configurations over thirty years. Launched from Cape Canaveral, Vandenberg, Wallops Island, and from Italy's equatorial San Marco platform off Kenya. Italy studied but did not develop subsequent upgraded versions. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Vought American manufacturer of rockets and spacecraft. Vought, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • Transit Spin-stabilized Transit satellites were developed by the US Navy into the first operational navigation satellite system, for use by ballistic missile submarines and surface vessels. Early Transits carried a variety of piggy-back payloads, many still classified. Transit was also known as the Navy Navigation Satellite (NNS). Transit provided continuous navigation satellite service from 1964, initially for Polaris submarines and later for civilian use. More...

Associated Launch Sites
  • Vandenberg Vandenberg Air Force Base is located on the Central Coast of California about 240 km northwest of Los Angeles. It is used for launches of unmanned government and commercial satellites into polar orbit and intercontinental ballistic missile test launches toward the Kwajalein Atoll. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC5 Scout launch complex. Dedicated Scout launch pad, used during the life of that vehicle from 1962 to 1994. More...

Associated Stages
  • Algol 2 Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 11,600/1,650 kg. Thrust 564.25 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 255 seconds. More...
  • Altair 2 Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 275/37 kg. Thrust 22.24 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 266 seconds. More...
  • Antares 2 Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 1,400/300 kg. Thrust 93.09 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 293 seconds. More...
  • Castor 2 Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 4,424/695 kg. Thrust 258.92 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 262 seconds. More...

Scout A Chronology


1957 July - . LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A.
  • Beginning of the Scout launch vehicle concept. - . Nation: USA. Summary: A study was initiated by the Langley Aeronautical Laboratory on the use of solid-fuel upper stages to achieve a payload orbit with as simple a launch vehicle as possible. This was the beginning of the Scout test-vehicle concept..

1959 March 1 - . LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A.
  • Scout development begun. - . Nation: USA. Summary: "Poor man's rocket," Scout, was jointly announced by NASA and AF. The concept of Scout originated at Langley Research Center in 1958, based upon extensive experience with staged solid-propellant rockets..

1961 May 5 - . LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A.
  • Scout to evaluate the Mercury tracking system. - . Nation: USA. Program: Mercury. Spacecraft: Radio Test Spacecraft. Summary: A document was issued regarding use of a Scout test vehicle to evaluate the performance of the Mercury tracking and real-time computing system. NASA Headquarters tentatively approved the plan on May 24, 1961..

1961 June 13 - . LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A.
  • Mercury-Scout instrumentation system. - . Nation: USA. Program: Mercury. Spacecraft: Radio Test Spacecraft. Summary: The Space Task Group forwarded to NASA Headquarters the details for the Mercury-Scout instrumentation system. This mission was to check the operational effectiveness of the Mercury global tracking network..

1961 October 29 - . LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A.
  • Mercury-Scout announcement - . Nation: USA. Program: Mercury. Spacecraft: Radio Test Spacecraft. Summary: An announcement was made that a Mercury-Scout launch would be made to verify the readiness of the world-wide Mercury Tracking network to handle further orbital flights..

1965 December 22 - . 04:33 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S140C.
  • Transit O-6 - . Mass: 60 kg (132 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 1864 . COSPAR: 1965-109A. Apogee: 1,059 km (658 mi). Perigee: 891 km (553 mi). Inclination: 89.1000 deg. Period: 104.60 min. Summary: Spacecraft built by Naval Avionics Facility, but refurbished by APL. Operated for 7 to 11 months, but then failed due to poor workmanship of NAFI components..

1966 January 28 - . 17:06 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S142C.
  • Transit O-7 - . Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 1952 . COSPAR: 1966-005A. Apogee: 1,180 km (730 mi). Perigee: 850 km (520 mi). Inclination: 90.0000 deg. Period: 105.40 min. Summary: Naval Avionics Facility-assembled production spacecraft. Failed after a few weeks operation..

1966 March 26 - . 03:31 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S143C.
  • Transit O-8 - . Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 2119 . COSPAR: 1966-024A. Apogee: 1,099 km (682 mi). Perigee: 879 km (546 mi). Inclination: 89.7000 deg. Period: 104.90 min. Summary: Spacecraft built by Naval Avionics Facility, but refurbished by APL. Operated for 7 to 11 months, but then failed due to poor workmanship of NAFI components..

1966 May 19 - . 02:27 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S146C.
  • Transit O-9 - . Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 2176 . COSPAR: 1966-041A. Apogee: 951 km (590 mi). Perigee: 833 km (517 mi). Inclination: 90.1000 deg. Period: 102.80 min. Summary: Spacecraft built by Naval Avionics Facility, but refurbished by APL. Operated for 7 to 11 months, but then failed due to poor workmanship of NAFI components..

1966 August 18 - . 02:25 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S149C.
  • Transit O-10 - . Mass: 58 kg (127 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 2401 . COSPAR: 1966-076A. Apogee: 1,089 km (676 mi). Perigee: 1,038 km (644 mi). Inclination: 88.9000 deg. Period: 106.50 min. Spacecraft built by Naval Avionics Facility, but refurbished by APL. Only partially operational due to a decrease in the number of solar cells available for charging the batteries after thermal working of the solar cell interconnections in day/night cycles.

1967 April 14 - . 03:25 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S154C.
  • Transit O-12 - . Mass: 60 kg (132 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 2754 . COSPAR: 1967-034A. Apogee: 1,064 km (661 mi). Perigee: 1,037 km (644 mi). Inclination: 90.1000 deg. Period: 106.20 min. Summary: First APL-built Transit Operational satellite. Operational life of this and subsequent Transits was over 14 years..

1967 May 5 - . 16:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S155C.
  • Ariel 3 - . Payload: UK 3 (UK-E). Mass: 90 kg (198 lb). Nation: UK. Agency: SRC. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: Ariel. Decay Date: 1970-12-14 . USAF Sat Cat: 2773 . COSPAR: 1967-042A. Apogee: 604 km (375 mi). Perigee: 499 km (310 mi). Inclination: 80.6000 deg. Period: 95.60 min. Summary: Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B). .

1967 May 18 - . 09:05 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S156C.
  • Transit O-13 - . Mass: 60 kg (132 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 2807 . COSPAR: 1967-048A. Apogee: 1,088 km (676 mi). Perigee: 1,059 km (658 mi). Inclination: 89.6000 deg. Period: 106.70 min. Summary: Operational life over 20 years..

1967 September 25 - . 08:25 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S157C.
  • Transit O-14 - . Mass: 60 kg (132 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 2965 . COSPAR: 1967-092A. Apogee: 1,099 km (682 mi). Perigee: 1,030 km (640 mi). Inclination: 89.2000 deg. Period: 106.50 min.

1968 March 2 - . 03:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S162C.
  • Transit O-18 - . Mass: 60 kg (132 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 3133 . COSPAR: 1968-012A. Apogee: 1,130 km (700 mi). Perigee: 1,014 km (630 mi). Inclination: 90.0000 deg. Period: 106.70 min. Summary: First RCA-built Transit..

1970 August 27 - . 13:23 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC5. LV Family: Scout. Launch Vehicle: Scout A. LV Configuration: Scout A S176C.
  • Transit O-19 - . Mass: 18 kg (39 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Program: Transit. Class: Navigation. Type: Navigation satellite. Spacecraft: Transit. USAF Sat Cat: 4507 . COSPAR: 1970-067A. Apogee: 1,201 km (746 mi). Perigee: 946 km (587 mi). Inclination: 90.0000 deg. Period: 106.70 min.

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