The Little Joe 1B

po_Littlejoe1Bpo_Littlejoe1B2The Little Joe 1B was a Launch Escape System test of the Mercury spacecraft, conducted as part of the U.S. Mercury program. The mission also carried a female Rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta) named Miss Sam in the Mercury spacecraft. The mission was launched January 21, 1960, from Wallops Island, Virginia. The Little Joe 1B flew to an apogee of 9.3 statute miles (15.0 km) and a range of 11.7 miles (18.9 km) out to sea. Miss Sam survived the 8 minute 35 second flight in good condition. The spacecraft was recovered by a Marine helicopter and returned to Wallops Island within about 45 minutes. Miss Sam was one of many monkeys used in space travel research.