Eleven years since Andy Green OBE and Thrust SSC smashed through the sound barrier on their way to the current World Land Speed Record of 763.035 mph, Green and former record-holder, Richard Noble OBE, are preparing to write the latest chapter in the history of World Land Speed Record attempts, with a 1,000 mph bid.
As much an engineering adventure as the ultimate speed record challenge, the three-year Bloodhound Project, supported by premier fuel additive makers STP, is designed to re-ignite interest in science, technology and engineering amongst the youth, and raise the numbers entering technology careers.
Founder sponsor of the Bloodhound Project, STP is famed as the world’s premier engine fuel additive brand, and is no stranger to the land speed record arena, having sponsored US barnstormer, Athol Graham, back in 1959 and backed fellow countryman Art Arfons to successive Land Speed Records in the early 60s at the famous Bonneveile Salt Flats, USA.
An exotic combination of jet, rocket and piston-engined power is employed in the 40ft, 6.5 tonne Bloodhound SSC supersonic car in the quest for the ultimate goal. With Andy Green OBE again fronting a team led by former Land Speed Record Holder and team boss from 12 years ago, Richard Noble OBE, the team has all the credentials to tackle arguably the greatest sporting challenge on earth.
The project, based in Filton, Bristol, will provide the most exciting, compelling and enthralling arena in which to showcase frontier technologies and, for STP, to educate consumers and future users on wider issues of engine efficiency.
Starting with an 800mph bid in 2009, the car will be continuously developed, with a 900mph run in 2010 and the ultimate goal of 1000mph will be aimed for in 2011. The venue for the record runs is to be confirmed.
Significantly, to fulfil the aim of generating interest and enthusiasm in technology, the unique project has complete public accessibility, unlike other major motorsport arenas. Bloodhound SSC will be developed in the full public gaze at the team HQ in Filton, where visitors will have access to see the car taking shape. Comprehensive and constantly updated websites, from both the Bloodhound Project and STP, will also act as a rich resource for full information as the project unfolds.
Bloodhound SSC Facts:
- STP-sponsored ART ARFONS took the World Land Speed Record at Bonneville, USA, at 576mph, in November 1965.
- If BLOODHOUND SSC achieves its target of 1,000mph (Mach 1.4) it will mark the greatest incremental increase in the history of the land speed record; it will also exceed the low altitude speed record for aircraft (c.994mph).
- As the ultimate, unlimited racing car, BLOODHOUND SSC will also be the catalyst for a raft of cutting-edge research in fields such as aerodynamics, computational fluid dynamics, materials technology, composite manufacturing and sustainable high-tech engineering.
- The 12.8m long, 6,422kg (fuelled), jet and rocket-powered vehicle will be more advanced than most spacecraft and faster than a bullet fired from a handgun.
- Its 900mm diameter wheels will spin at over 10,000rpm, generating 50,000 radial G at the rim.
- The car will accelerate from 0 1,050mph in 40 seconds and at V-max (maximum velocity), the pressure of air bearing down on its carbon fibre bodywork will exceed twelve tonnes per square metre.
- At this speed, Andy Green will be covering a distance equivalent to over four football pitches, or 500m, in the blink of an eye.
- The prime objective of The BLOODHOUND Project is to create an unprecedented education and engagement programme, led by a dedicated team of teachers and education specialists. From innovative, curriculum-based lesson plans covering subjects ranging from geography to citizenship, as well as science, technology, engineering and mathematics, to a schools visitor centre featuring the classroom of the future at the teams HQ in Filton, Bristol, the aim is to make BLOODHOUND SSC accessible to all ages from 5 19 and beyond.
- The BLOODHOUND Project is a private venture. Government is part funding the three year education programme but not the build and running costs of the car. These costs will be covered by sponsorships. Founder sponsors are STP, Swansea University, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, Serco and the University of The West of England.
- Richard Noble OBE, Project Director, commented: There has never been anything like BLOODHOUND SSC before. It is undoubtedly the most stimulating and challenging programme Ive ever been involved with. The next three years are going to be tough, testing and damned exciting!
- Andy Green OBE, commented: Ive met graduate engineers who are adamant that our previous record was what inspired their career choice as youngsters: that sort of thing makes all the effort worthwhile. BLOODHOUND SSC will be so much faster and, we hope, will fire up every school kid about the science and technology. Were going to invite everyone to follow our adventure in this, the most exciting and extreme form of motorsport the World Land Speed Record. Both as a Mathematician, and as a Royal Air Force fighter pilot, I cant think of anything better.