Woomera Launch Area 5

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Launch Area 5
Launch site Woomera
Location 30°57′00″S 136°27′34″E / 30.9500°S 136.4595°E / -30.9500; 136.4595
Short name LA-5
Operator RAAF
Total launches 26
Launch pad(s) 3
Min / max
orbital inclination
LA-5 launch history
Status (2013) DSTO Rocket Engine Test Facility
Launches 12
First launch 7 June 1961
Last launch 25 November 1965
Black Knight
LA-5A launch history
Status Decommissioned
Launches 9
First launch 7 September 1958
Last launch 7 May 1961
Black Knight
LA-5B launch history
Status Decommissioned
Launches 5
First launch 9 May 1961
Last launch 28 October 1971
Black Knight
Black Arrow

Launch Area 5 (LA5) is an operational site at the RAAF Woomera Test Range which forms the primary operational capability of the Woomera Range Complex.[1] Originally LA5 was a rocket launch site which supported a number of British experimental launches, including the United Kingdom's first, and as of 2015 only, satellite launch. It consisted of three separate launch pads, which supported 22 Black Knight sounding rocket launches, and four Black Arrow carrier rocket launches. Of the four Black Arrow launches, two were orbital launches, the first of which, on 2 September 1970, failed, and the second, on 28 October 1971, succeeded, placing the Prospero satellite into low Earth orbit.[2]


  1. ^ See: HQWTR - Woomera Range Complex Fact Sheet (Nov 2013)
  2. ^ See: Peter Morton, 'Fire Across the Desert', AGPS 1989