Encyclopedia Astronautica
Alcantara



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Alcantara
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Alcantara
Location of Alcantara
Credit: © Mark Wade
Sounding rocket and orbital launch site. Used for 53 known launches from 1990 to 2007. The launch complex for Brazil's indigenous VLS orbital booster was located here.

Minimum Inclination: 2.0 degrees. Maximum Inclination: 100.0 degrees.

Location: Alcantara Space Center, Maranhao.
Longitude: -44.3774 deg.
Latitude: -2.3652 deg.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • SCD Brazilian communications technology satellite. 3 launches, 1993.02.09 (SCD-1) to 1998.10.23 (SCD-2). Environmental data relay. More...
  • SACI Brazilian technology satellite. 2 launches, 1999.10.14 (SACI 1) and 1999.12.11 (SACI-2). INPE experimental scientific satellites; carried a magnetometer, particle detectors and an atmospheric experiment. More...

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...
  • Hawk American surface-to-air missile and sounding rocket family. More...
  • Viper Single stage sounding rocket developed as a follow-on to the Loki-Dart. More...
  • VLS Brazilian satellite launcher building on successful family of sounding rockets. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Viper American sounding rocket. Single stage sounding rocket developed as a follow-on to the Loki-Dart. More...
  • Nike Tomahawk American sounding rocket. Two stage vehicle consisting of a Nike booster and Tomahawk upper stage. Payload 45 kg to 370 km or 115 kg to 215 km. More...
  • Sonda 3 Brazilian sounding rocket. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Sonda 3-1 + 1 x Sonda 2A More...
  • Nike Orion American sounding rocket. Two stage vehicle. Payload 68 kg to 190 km or 204 kg to 90 km. The Nike motor had three equally spaced unmodified Ajax fins, and the Orion motor had four fins on the aft end arranged in a cruciform configuration to provide stability. The first stage Nike booster had an action time of 3.2 seconds. The second stage ignited 9 seconds after liftoff and had an action time of 32 seconds. Capability 68 kg payload to 190 kilometers or a 204 kg payload to 90 kilometers when launched from sea level at an 85 degree launch angle. More...
  • Black Brant 10 Canadian sounding rocket. Three stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Terrier + 1 x Black Brant VB or VC + 1 x Nihka. Payload 90 kg to 1,200 km or 317 kg to 550 km. More...
  • Improved Orion American sounding rocket. Unguided solid propellant single stage rocket using a military surplus M112 Hawk rocket motor. The motor was a dual thrust burner with a boost phase of 5 seconds and a sustainer phase of approximately 21 seconds. The rocket accelerated the payload then for 26 seconds with peak acceleration during the boost phase of 21g. A payload mass of 100 kg could be carried to an apogee of approximately 110 km. More...
  • VS-40 Brazilian sounding rocket. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x S-40TM + 1 x S-44 More...
  • VS-30 Brazilian sounding rocket. Single stage suborbital launch vehicle. More...
  • VS-30/Orion Brazilian sounding rocket. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Sonda 3-1 + 1 x Orion More...
  • VSB-30 Brazilian two stage sounding rocket consisting of 1 x S-31 plus 1 x S-30. It replaced the British Skylark for suborbital flights from Kiruna. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • AEB Brazilian agency. Agencia Espacial Brasileira, Brazil. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.

Associated Launch Sites

Alcantara Chronology


1990 February 21 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 2. LV Configuration: Sonda 2 XV-53.
  • Alcantara Ionosphere mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE; IAE. Apogee: 101 km (62 mi).

1990 November 26 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 2. LV Configuration: Sonda 2 XV-54.
  • Manival Ionosphere mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE; IAE. Apogee: 91 km (56 mi).

1991 December 9 - . 21:05 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 2. LV Configuration: Sonda 2 XV-55.
  • Aguas Belas Aeronomy mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE; IAE. Apogee: 88 km (54 mi).

1992 June 1 - . 02:52 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 3. LV Configuration: Sonda 3 XV-24.
  • Aeronomy mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: IAE. Apogee: 282 km (175 mi).

1992 October 31 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 2. LV Configuration: Sonda 2 XV-56.
  • Ponta de Areia Ionosphere mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE; IAE. Apogee: 32 km (19 mi).

1993 March 22 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 2. LV Configuration: Sonda 2 XV-57.
  • Maruda Ionosphere mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE; IAE. Apogee: 102 km (63 mi).

1993 April 2 - . 10:34 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: VLS. Launch Vehicle: VS-40. LV Configuration: VS-40 PT-01.
  • Test mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE. Apogee: 950 km (590 mi).

1994 August 16 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 17 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 18 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 19 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 19 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 19 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 19 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 19 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 19 - . 15:08 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Hawk. Launch Vehicle: Nike Orion. LV Configuration: Nike Orion NASA 31.102GE.
  • GUARA MALTED / CADRE Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 125 km (77 mi).

1994 August 20 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 20 - . 02:18 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Hawk. Launch Vehicle: Nike Orion. LV Configuration: Nike Orion NASA 31.103GE.
  • GUARA MALTED / CADRE Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 125 km (77 mi).

1994 August 21 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 22 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 23 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 24 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 24 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 24 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 24 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 24 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 24 - . 13:39 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Hawk. Launch Vehicle: Nike Orion. LV Configuration: Nike Orion NASA 31.105GE.
  • GUARA MALTED / CADRE Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 127 km (78 mi).

1994 August 25 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 25 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 25 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Viper. Launch Vehicle: Viper. LV Configuration: Viper Sphere.
  • GUARA MET Aeronomy mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 90 km (55 mi).

1994 August 25 - . 01:43 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Hawk. Launch Vehicle: Nike Orion. LV Configuration: Nike Orion NASA 31.104GE.
  • GUARA MALTED / CADRE Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 126 km (78 mi).

1994 September 9 - . 13:33 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 5C. LV Configuration: Black Brant VC NASA 21.110GE.
  • GUARA Electrojet Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 120 km (70 mi).

1994 September 21 - . 13:56 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 5C. LV Configuration: Black Brant VC NASA 21.111GE.
  • GUARA Electrojet Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 120 km (70 mi).

1994 September 23 - . 21:15 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Tomahawk Sandia. Launch Vehicle: Nike Tomahawk. LV Configuration: Nike Tomahawk NASA 18.226UE.
  • GUARA Sunset Electrodynamics Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 270 km (160 mi).

1994 September 23 - . 21:17 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Tomahawk Sandia. Launch Vehicle: Nike Tomahawk. LV Configuration: Nike Tomahawk NASA 18.225UE.
  • GUARA Sunset Electrodynamics Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 270 km (160 mi).

1994 September 24 - . 21:15 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Tomahawk Sandia. Launch Vehicle: Nike Tomahawk. LV Configuration: Nike Tomahawk NASA 18.228UE.
  • GUARA Sunset Electrodynamics Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 270 km (160 mi).

1994 September 24 - . 21:17 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Tomahawk Sandia. Launch Vehicle: Nike Tomahawk. LV Configuration: Nike Tomahawk NASA 18.227UE.
  • GUARA Sunset Electrodynamics Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Apogee: 270 km (160 mi).

1994 October 6 - . 13:22 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 5C. LV Configuration: Black Brant VC NASA 21.112GE. FAILURE: Failure.
  • GUARA Electrojet Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 120 km (70 mi).

1994 October 14 - . 22:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 10. LV Configuration: Black Brant X NASA 35.030IE.
  • GUARA High Altitude Spread F Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 956 km (594 mi).

1994 October 15 - . 13:41 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Black Brant. Launch Vehicle: Black Brant 5C. LV Configuration: Black Brant VC NASA 21.113GE.
  • GUARA Electrojet Ionosphere mission - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Apogee: 120 km (70 mi).

1995 December 19 - . 01:17 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: Sonda 3. LV Configuration: Sonda 3 XV-26?.
  • Ionosphere mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: IAE. Apogee: 406 km (252 mi).

1997 April 28 - . 16:42 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VS-30. LV Configuration: VS-30 XV-01.
  • DLR AL-VS30-223 test - . Nation: Germany. Agency: INPE; DLR. Apogee: 128 km (79 mi).

1997 November 2 - . 12:25 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. Launch Complex: Alcantara VLS. LV Family: VLS. Launch Vehicle: VLS-1. LV Configuration: VLS-1 V01. FAILURE: Destroyed during launch.. Failed Stage: 1.
  • SCD-2A - . Mass: 115 kg (253 lb). Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Manufacturer: INPE. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: SCD. COSPAR: F971102A. Apogee: 3.00 km (1.80 mi). Summary: The SCD-2A (Data Collection Satellite 2A) was a Brazilian satellite designed for the collection of meteorological data relayed by data collection platforms spread throughout the Brazilian territory..

1998 March 21 - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: VLS. Launch Vehicle: VS-40.
  • Test mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE. Apogee: 900 km (550 mi).

1999 March 15 - . 09:52 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VS-30. LV Configuration: VS-30 XV-04.
  • Operacao San Marcos Microgravity mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Apogee: 128 km (79 mi).

1999 December 11 - . 18:25 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. Launch Complex: Alcantara VLS. LV Family: VLS. Launch Vehicle: VLS-1. LV Configuration: VLS-1 V02. FAILURE: Second stage failed to ignite; destroyed by range safety.. Failed Stage: 2.
  • SACI-2 - . Mass: 80 kg (176 lb). Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Manufacturer: INPE. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: SACI. COSPAR: F991211A. Apogee: 10 km (6 mi). Summary: Second attempted launch of Brazil's indigenous launcher..

2000 February 6 - . 16:37 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VS-30. LV Configuration: VS-30 XV-05.
  • Lencois Maranhenses Microgravity mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Apogee: 148 km (91 mi).

2000 August 21 - . 20:14 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VS-30/Orion. LV Configuration: VS-30/Orion XV-01.
  • Baronesa Microgravity mission - . Nation: Germany. Agency: AEB; DLR. Apogee: 315 km (195 mi).

2002 November 23 - . 22:18 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VS-30/Orion. LV Configuration: VS-30/Orion XV-02.
  • Piraperna Ionosphere mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Apogee: 434 km (269 mi).

2002 December 1 - . 12:33 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VS-30. LV Configuration: VS-30 XV-06. FAILURE: Failure.
  • Cuma Microgravity mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Apogee: 145 km (90 mi).

2003 August 22 - . 16:30 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. Launch Complex: Alcantara VLS. LV Family: VLS. Launch Vehicle: VLS-1. LV Configuration: VLS-1 V03. FAILURE: Failure - Exploded on pad during final prelaunch processing. 21 people were killed, with none injured.. Failed Stage: 1.
  • SATEC - . Payload: SATEC. Mass: 57 kg (125 lb). Nation: Brazil. Agency: INPE. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: SATEC. COSPAR: F20030822A. Launch was due on August 25. Was to have been on third qualification flight after two previous failures. The launch had already been delayed from October 2002, then May 7 and June 20 2003. It appeared that one of the strapon boosters ignited by accident. The two satellite payloads were also destroyed in the blast, as was the launch pad.
  • Unosat - . Payload: Unosat. Mass: 9.00 kg (19.80 lb). Nation: Brazil. Agency: Parana. Class: Technology. Type: Technology satellite. Spacecraft: Unosat. COSPAR: F20030822B.

2004 October 23 - . 16:51 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VSB-30. LV Configuration: VSB-30 XV-01.
  • Cajuana test - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Apogee: 240 km (140 mi). Unguided test launch. During the 45 seconds total burn time of both motors the vehicle was accelerated to a final velocity of 1676 m/s. The payload segment with an approximate weight of 400 kg was carried to an apogee height of almost 240 km, which was reached 252 seconds after lift-off. At T+650 seconds the payload landed 190 km northeast of the launch site in the ocean, only 700 meters from the nominal impact point.

2007 July 19 - . 15:13 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VSB-30.
  • Cuma II Microgravity mission - . Nation: Brazil. Agency: AEB. Apogee: 242 km (150 mi).

2009 May 29 - . 13:25 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Hawk. Launch Vehicle: Improved Orion.
  • Maracati 1 - . Nation: Brazil. Apogee: 93 km (57 mi). Summary: Test.

2010 December 6 - . 17:19 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Hawk. Launch Vehicle: Improved Orion. LV Configuration: Improved Orion s/n V03.
  • Maracati 2 - . Nation: Brazil. Apogee: 103 km (64 mi). Summary: Range test prior to Microg 1A launch..

2010 December 12 - . 15:35 GMT - . Launch Site: Alcantara. LV Family: Sonda. Launch Vehicle: VSB-30. LV Configuration: VSB-30 s/n V07.
  • MICROG 1A - . Nation: Brazil. Apogee: 242 km (150 mi). Summary: Microgravity payload..

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