Magellan Aerospace Commemorates 50th Anniversary of Black Brant Rockets

Black Brant 1960. Credit: Defense Research and Development Canada.

Magellan Aerospace‘s Winnipeg division, Bristol Aerospace Limited recently held a celebration to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the launch of its first Black Brant sounding rocket. Since the June 1962 launch, more than 1,000 Black Brant rockets have been sold worldwide.

At the event, Magellan Aerospace’s Vice President and General Manager, Mr. Don Boitson, made a presentation of a full size Black Brant rocket to the Manitoba Museum. The rocket will be an exhibit in the museum’s Science Gallery.

Mr. Boitson said, “We are delighted to entrust this Black Brant 5 rocket to The Manitoba Museum. We know that the Museum is the perfect place to display the Black Brant rocket for the enjoyment of Manitobans today and for future generations. The Black Brant is an important piece of Manitoba’s heritage and showcases one of Manitoba’s significant contributions to the field of rocketry to space science.”

Claudette Leclerc, CEO of The Manitoba Museum said, “The Black Brant rocket is science in Manitoba at its best and a significant part of Manitoba’s science and engineering history. We are truly honoured that Magellan Aerospace has chosen The Manitoba Museum’s Science Gallery to be the custodian of the history. The Black Brant rocket will become an iconic focal point to illustrate the importance of Manitoba’s aerospace industry. We can’t wait to get it into our Science Gallery as soon as possible.

Black Brant sounding rockets are single-stage or multi-stage solid propellant rockets used to propel scientific payloads into space on parabolic or sub-orbital trajectories. They carry payloads from 70 to 850 kg to altitudes from 150 to 1500 km. From the mid 1950s until the early 1980s the Churchill Research Range in northern Manitoba was used to launch rockets to explore the upper atmosphere.

About Randy Attwood

Amateur astronomer, astrophotographer, space exploration historian. Executive Director, The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada / Publisher - SkyNews magazine.

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