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Published: Sat, October 28, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Bloodhound auto attempts to beat land speed record

Bloodhound auto attempts to beat land speed record

On Thursday, the team will for the first time ever roll out the 13.4 metres long, 7.5 tonne vehicle, that they aim to break the record with on Hakskeen Pan in the Northern Cape in the near future. Driven by RAF Wing Commander Andy Green, there are few men better suited for the job: in 1997 former he broke the sound barrier with the Thrust SCC team, averaging 763.035mph to set a world record (which he will attempt to break initially with the Bloodhound SCC, before attempting to hit the final 1,000mph goal). The "Bloodhound Supersonic Car", which is fitted with a Eurofighter jet engine has been in development for nine years.

That's not enough to break the world land speed record of 763 miles per hour (1,227 km/h), but it would allow the engineers to learn a lot more about the vehicle's capabilities.

The engineering behind the Bloodhound SSC is fascinating.

The test runs took place at Newquay Airport in Cornwall, southwest England.

"Stopping a slippery, five ton vehicle, running on low-grip aircraft tires, is a challenge within the relatively limited length of the 2.7km runway here, particularly as the auto continues accelerating after I lift off the throttle", Green explained.

Project director Richard Noble said, however, that the 10-year project isn't just about breaking the record.

BLOODHOUND SSC is pushed out of the hangar by technicians at Newquay airport, Cornwall, where the supersonic auto prepares to make its first run up to 200mph. "And then to slow down, I need to apply gentle pressure to the brakes for two seconds to "warm up" the carbon fibre disk brakes before applying full force on the brakes to stop the vehicle".

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