Encyclopedia Astronautica
RSA-3-3


Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 2,048/170 kg. Thrust 58.80 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 298 seconds. Data accurate. Source: Missile exhibit and placards, AF Museum, South Africa. ARC/Rafael AUS 51 is identical.

Status: Development ended 2001.
Gross mass: 2,048 kg (4,515 lb).
Unfuelled mass: 170 kg (370 lb).
Height: 2.60 m (8.50 ft).
Diameter: 1.30 m (4.20 ft).
Span: 1.30 m (4.20 ft).
Thrust: 58.80 kN (13,219 lbf).
Specific impulse: 298 s.
Burn time: 94 s.
Number: 10 .

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Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • RSA-3-3 South Africansolid rocket engine. 51 kN. In production. Israeli AUS-51 rocket motor, built in both Israel and South Africa. Isp=292s. Upper stage engine for RSA-3, RSA-4, Shavit, Shavit 1. First flight 1988. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Shavit Israeli all-solid orbital launch vehicle. Satellite launcher derived from Jericho II MRBM, essentially identical to South African RSA-3. More...
  • RSA-3 The RSA-3 satellite launcher began development as an IRBM in the 1980's because of the perceived Soviet threat and isolation of South Africa. It was developed with the assistance of Israel and was believed to be essentially identical to the Israeli Jericho missile/Shavit launch vehicle. The objective of the satellite launcher was to place a small surveillance satellite of 330 kg mass into a 41 degree, 212 x 460 km orbit around the earth. Development continued even after South African renunciation of its nuclear weapons. However the launcher was found not to be viable commercially and so was cancelled in mid-1994. More...
  • RSA-4 South African all-solid orbital launch vehicle. The RSA-4 ICBM / satellite launcher was a planned follow-on to the RSA-3. A large new first stage optimised the vehicle and more than doubled the payload in comparison to the RSA-3. It is not known if the project reached the point of testing of the large motor, which was equivalent to the US Peacekeeper first stage. More...
  • Shavit 1 Israeli all-solid orbital launch vehicle. Shavit 1 is an improved version of the original Shavit with a stretched first stage motor. More...
  • LeoLink LK-1 Satellite launcher derived from planned Israeli Shavit-2 launch vehicle, but with rocket motors and major components built in USA to qualify for US contracts. More...

Associated Propellants
  • Solid Solid propellants have the fuel and oxidiser embedded in a rubbery matrix. They were developed to a high degree of perfection in the United States in the 1950's and 1960's. In Russia, development was slower, due to a lack of technical leadership in the area and rail handling problems. Solid propellants have the fuel and oxidiser embedded in a rubbery matrix. They were developed to a high degree of perfection in the United States in the 1950's and 1960's. In Russia, development was slower, due to a lack of technical leadership in the area and rail handling problems. More...

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