This 1000 mph Jet-Powered Car Is Hoping to Break the Land Speed Record

25 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

1,000mph Bloodhound land-speed record car laid bare.

Project director Richard Noble who led the team that designed the Bloodhound, the 1,600kph supersonic racer, said that driving the race car is not the exhilarating rush people might expect. “It’s all about complete and utter accuracy and complete focus, and if you are getting some sort of buzz or excitement out of it then you are the wrong man.The Bloodhound Supersonic Car (SSC) – built with input from experts at Swansea University – has been built to smash the current land-speed record of 763mph (1,228km/h) set by another British car, Thrust SSC, in 1997.

The Bloodhound will undergo 320kph trials next year at Newquay Aerohub in Cornwall before embarking on a series of high-speed runs in a desert venue in South Africa. A rocket-powered car that could break the world land speed record and travel at over 1,000 miles per hour (1,600 kilometres) per hour could be the solution. Unless you count the fire and brimstone that will emerge from the back of the 14-metre-long, 135,000bhp Bloodhound SSC land-speed record contender when Andy Green drives it on its first test runs at St Mawgan aerodrome in Cornwall next spring. It was today shown in fully assembled form for the first time, with the right-hand side fully dressed in desert spec, complete with forged aluminium wheels and aerodynamic panels, and the left in “naked” Newquay spec, meaning rubber tyres that can run on Tarmac and panels missing for easy access.

Andy Green, 52, is the current record holder, having achieved the feat in Thrust SSC at Black Rock Desert in Nevada in 1997, and will be driving the Bloodhound. With a fighter jet engine and rockets, the sleek 135,000-horsepower car is as powerful as 180 Formula One racing cars and will go faster than a bullet. The supersonic car, assembled at Avonmouth, near Bristol, is the result of eight years of research, design and manufacturing involving more than 350 companies and universities. It has three power plants, a Rolls-Royce EJ200 jet from a Eurofighter Typhoon, a cluster of Nammo hybrid rockets, and a Jaguar V8 engine that drives the rocket oxidiser pump.

Mr Noble, also the driver of Thrust 2 which broke the land-speed record in 1983, said: “Way back in 1997 we broke the sound barrier with Thrust SSC car driven by Andy Green. “A terrific achievement and as far as the team were concerned we were absolutely exhausted – we all swore we would never ever do this again. In spite of being told how big it is, the first impression (after an immense swell of pride that such an advanced piece of machinery could be developed in Britain) is that it looks compact, muscular and simply crammed with engines, jets and rockets. The cockpit looks like the one on a jet, including the oxygen mask. “It’s like an aeroplane but on four wheels,” said Mark Blackwell, a technician on the project. “In the US during 1961 to 1972, the number of PhD achieved in science education increased by 300 per cent” because of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union, he said. “Kids respond very well, set up rocket clubs, do more maths,” said Kirsty Allpress from the Bloodhound Education Team, which visits schools to talk about the car. The most recognisable thing, apart from the seven fire extinguishers, is the 5.0-litre V8 engine from the Jaguar F-type sports car, which will run the fuel pumps, delivering more than 800 litres of high-test peroxide in just 20 seconds – the rocket motor’s burn time.

Noble said that footage of the car and data relating to the project is all uploaded onto the website and this information is then used by teachers for classwork. The jet engine from a Typhoon fighter plane occupies the car’s top floor and provides nine tonnes of thrust, while underneath is a single Nammo rocket motor providing an additional four tonnes.

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