The 1,000mph Bloodhound SSC land speed record car will go on display virtually finished for the first time in London this Friday and Saturday (25-26 September).
8,000 people are expected to come and view the car at the free event in Canary Wharf, which was fully booked within days of tickets becoming available.
Bloodhound is almost complete, with just the rocket engine and various aero devices – including the strake that runs along the top up to the fin – yet to be fitted. It will be displayed with some of the carbonfibre body panels removed, to give a better view of the inner workings.
The rocket, built by Norwegian company Nammo, is one of three power sources on board Bloodhound. A Rolls-Royce EJ200 jet engine, usually found in the Eurofighter Typhoon, gets the car up to 200mph, when the rocket takes over. The third power unit is a supercharged Jaguar V8, which drives the rocket’s fuel pump. Bloodhound produces a combined output of 135,000 thrust horsepower.
Eight years of research, design and manufacturing – and around £40 million – has gone into Bloodhound so far. Over 350 companies and universities have been involved, while engineers from the army and Royal Air Force have provided assistance.
Test runs are planned at Newquay airport early next year before the team decamps to the Hakskeen Pan in South Africa. The plan is to reach 800mph, itself a land speed record, before shooting for the magic 1,000mph barrier in 2017.
Driver Andy Green currently holds the record at 763.035mph, set in 1997 at Black Rock Desert in Nevada, USA, driving Thrust SSC. Project head Richard Noble also led Thrust SSC and broke the LSR himself in 1983, reaching a speed of 633.468mph in Thrust 2.
One of the aims of the Bloodhound project is to inspire school children to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and maths. Over 100,000 children in the UK have done Bloodhound lessons and the Model Rocket Car Challenge has become something of a worldwide phenomenon. Research and development has been carried out on an open source basis, the record runs themselves will be covered live by 12 cameras mounted on the car and telemetry from the runs will be made publicly available.
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By Only Motors