Time has been passing ever so swiftly as we wait for the fastest car ever made to hit the ground running. The Bloodhound SSC has suffered some delays, as it is by far is the most complicated car ever built. Every curve, bump, seam and edge has been designed to give it better balance while going beyond supersonic speeds.
On this occasion it seems like the same actors and the same script all over again. Those that are familiar with Richard Noble and Andy Green will be sure to remember the Thrust SSC project in 1997. Where Richard was the head of the project and Andy Green was the brave and daring pilot of the jet car. This arrangement remains the same with the Bloodhound SSC.
The Bloodhound eventually targets 1000 mph, however next year in South Africa they are first going to go for 850 mph. If they succeed successfully at this trial, then they will make adjustments and ready the car to go for the 1000 mph record later in the year. Thus, the Bloodhound is going for two land speed records and they are hopeful that at 1000 mph it will be unreachable to all including its American contender the North American Eagle.
Bloodhound’s Engine Trinity
Bloodhound produces a staggering 135,000 bhp from three engines. The first engine is the Rolls Royce EJ200 Eurojet Engine, which is tasked with accelerating to 54,000 bhp. This engine was donated by the MoD and was actually destined to be placed in a Typhoon fighter. Now the trickiest part of placing a jet engine in a car is to ensure it retains its cool. Thus the team at Rolls Royce and Bloodhound set out to place the engine strategically to ensure it gets maximum airflow with the aim hoodwink the EJ200 into thinking it is in a Typhoon.
After the EJ200 has accomplished accelerating, the Jaguar V8 engine kicks in to life. The 650 hp engine designed for the Land Rover doesn’t have the same orthodox duties it normally has, as its only duty is to pump fuel to the Nammo HTP hybrid rocket engine. The Nammo’s 81,000 hp power is derived from a controlled chemical reaction which offers Andy a small window to reach 1000 mph.
Driving the Bloodhound
Wing Commander Andy Green has his work cut out for him, as driving at supersonic speeds provides a challenge when handling the car. However, the car usually streamlines itself when it reaches supersonic speeds. Reaching top speed isn’t the hurdle, as the real challenge is to decelerate from supersonic speeds. With a mix of air brakes and a regular pedal break, Andy can go from 1000 to 0 mph in 65 seconds, causing him to feel like he is on another planet as he will experience a force of 3 times his weight.
The project has been a mammoth undertaking with over 350 companies and universities all getting involved. The colossal nature of the project has made it comprise of a whole 3,500 parts all held together with 22,500 custom-made rivets.
Do you believe the Bloodhound SSC is going to be the fastest car ever or are you a little skeptical? Have your say and leave a comment.
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