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Biosatellite 3

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Biosatellite 3
Biosatellite 3 satellite.
Mission typeBioscience
OperatorNASA / ARC
COSPAR ID1969-056A
SATCAT no.4000[1]
Mission duration8.8 days
Spacecraft properties
ManufacturerGeneral Electric[2]
Launch mass1,546 kilograms (3,408 lb)
Start of mission
Launch date29 June 1969, 03:15:59 (1969-06-29UTC03:15:59Z) UTC[3]
RocketDelta N 539/D70
Launch siteCape Canaveral LC-17A
End of mission
Landing date7 July 1969 (1969-07-08)
Landing siteOahu, Hawaii, USA
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
RegimeLow Earth
Perigee altitude221 kilometers (137 mi)[4]
Apogee altitude240 kilometers (150 mi)[4]
Period92 minutes[4]

Biosatellite 3, also known as Biosat 3 and Biosatellite D,[5] was a third and final mission in the Biosatellite program. It was launched on a Delta-N rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on June 29, 1969,

The intent had been to fly a 6-kg male Southern pig-tailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina) named "Bonny" in low Earth orbit for 30 days. However, after only 8.8 days in orbit, the mission was terminated because of the subject's deteriorating health. High development costs were a strong incentive for maximising the scientific return from the mission. Because of this, the scientific goals had become exceedingly ambitious over time, and a great many measurements were conducted on the single research subject flown. Although the mission was highly successful from a technical standpoint, the science results were apparently compromised.[6] Bonny, dubbed an "astromonk" by the American press (as opposed to the chimpanzees from earlier American missions who were nicknamed "chimponauts") died on 8 July, one day after the biological capsule's successful recovery from the Pacific.[7]

Despite failing its scientific agenda, Biosatellite 3 was influential in shaping the life sciences flight experiment program, pointing to the need for centralised management, realistic goals and substantial pre-flight experiment verification testing. The mission objective was to investigate the effect of space flight on brain states, behavioural performance, cardiovascular status, fluid and electrolyte balance, and metabolic state.[4]


  • Determination of Bone Mineral Loss during Prolonged Weightlessness
  • Effects of Prolonged Space Flight on Brain Functions and Performance[4]

See also



  1. ^ BIOSAT 3. n2yo.com. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  2. ^ Gunter Dirk Krebs Biosat 1, 2, 3 (Bios 1, 2, 3). Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  3. ^ Jonathan McDowell. Launch Log. Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 2018-06-14.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g "Mission information: Biosatellite III". NASA. Retrieved 25 May 2016. Public Domain This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  5. ^ Antonín Vítek 1969-056A - Biosatellite 3. Katalog družic (in Czech). Retrieved 14 June 2018
  6. ^ Mark Wade Biosatellite 3. Encyclopedia Astronautica. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  7. ^ "Astromonk Dies After Return", Pittsburgh Press, July 8, 1969, p1