Bloodhound SSC at Canary Wharf, London in September 2015
|Manufacturer||Bloodhound Company Ltd, Didcot|
|Assembly||Bloodhound Technical Centre, Bristol|
|Body and chassis|
|Class||Land speed record vehicle|
|Engine||Rolls-Royce Eurojet EJ200 afterburning turbofan |
Nammo HTP hybrid rocket
Jaguar Land Rover V8 engine (HTP pump)
|Wheelbase||8.9 m (29 ft)|
|Length||12.9 m (42 ft)|
|Width||2.5 m (8.2 ft)|
|Height||3.0 m (9.8 ft)|
|Kerb weight||6,422 kg (14,158 lb) fuelled|
Bloodhound SSC is a British supersonic land vehicle. Its goal is to match or exceed 1,000 miles per hour (1,609 km/h), achieving a new world land speed record. The pencil-shaped car, powered by a jet engine and a rocket engine, is designed to reach 1,050 miles per hour (1,690 km/h). It is being developed and built with the intention of breaking the land speed record by 33 per cent, the largest ever margin.
Runway testing of up to 200 miles per hour (320 km/h) occurred on 26, 28 and 30 October 2017 in Newquay, Cornwall. Bloodhound SSC will then be tested on the Hakskeen Pan in the Mier area of the Northern Cape, South Africa, where a track 12 miles (19 km) long, 2 miles (3.2 km) wide has been cleared.
In July 2016, it was reported that Andy Green would pilot the Bloodhound and attempt to break his own World Land Speed Record. In May 2018, the team announced plans to make a 500 mph run in 2019, and a 1,000 mph run in 2020, but the company went into administration in late 2018. Yorkshire entrepreneur Ian Warhurst bought the car with the intention to keep the project alive. As of March 2019, the project's future is still uncertain.
The project was announced on 23 October 2008 at the Science Museum in London by Lord Drayson - then Minister of Science in the UK's Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills - who in 2006 first proposed the project to Land Speed Record holders Richard Noble and Wing Commander and RAF pilot Andy Green. The two men, between them, have held the land speed record since 1983.
In 1983, Noble, a self-described engineer, adventurer, and former paint salesman, reached 633 mph (1,019 km/h) driving a turbojet-powered car named Thrust2 across the Nevada desert. In 1997, he headed the project to build the ThrustSSC, which was driven by Andy Green at 763 mph (1,228 km/h), thereby breaking the sound barrier, a record first for a land vehicle (in compliance with Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile rules). The project was named for the Bristol Bloodhound surface-to-air missile.
Andy Green is also Bloodhound's intended driver. Bloodhound is planned to accelerate from 0 to 1,000 mph (0 to 1,609 km/h) in 42 seconds, and decelerate using airbrakes at 800 mph (1,300 km/h), parachutes at 600mph (965km/h) and disc brakes below 250 mph (400 km/h). The force on the driver during acceleration would be 2.5g (two-and-a-half times his body weight) and during deceleration, up to 3g.
The project was originally fully based in the former Maritime Heritage Centre on the Bristol harbourside, next to Brunel's SS Great Britain. The construction would remain in Bristol but the head offices of the project moved to Didcot in Oxfordshire in late 2015.
Development stalled in October 2018 when it was announced that the company backing the project, Bloodhound Programme Ltd., had gone into administration, leaving a funding gap of £25 million, which put the venture's future into question.
The project was "axed" in December 2018, with plans to sell off the remaining assets, but later that month Yorkshire entrepreneur Ian Warhurst stepped in to rescue the project by buying the assets and intellectual property, including the car itself, for an undisclosed sum.
In March 2019, it was announced that Warhurst had formed a new company called Grafton LSR Ltd., which became the car's legal owner. The company said in a statement that Warhurst was trying to save the project with new sponsors and partners, and added that the survival and restart of the project was looking "very promising."
The College of Engineering at Swansea University has been heavily involved in the aerodynamic shape of the vehicle from the start. Professor Oubay Hassan, Professor Ken Morgan and their team have used Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to provide an understanding of the aerodynamic characteristics of the proposed shape, at all speeds, including predicting the likely vertical, lateral and drag forces on the vehicle and its pitch and yaw stability. This technology, originally developed for the aerospace industry, was validated for a land-going vehicle during the design of ThrustSSC. It was this involvement with the previous land speed record that prompted Richard Noble to approach Swansea in April 2007 for their help with this latest challenge. Swansea University's School of the Environment and Society was also enlisted to help determine a new test site for the record as the test site for the ThrustSSC record attempt had become unsuitable.
A prototype Eurojet EJ200 jet engine developed for the Eurofighter and bound for a museum, was donated to the project. This would take the car to 300 mph (480 km/h), after which a bespoke hybrid rocket designed by Nammo would boost the car up to 1,000 miles per hour (1,609 km/h). A third engine, a Jaguar supercharged V-8, was to be used as an auxiliary power unit and to drive the oxidizer pump for the rocket.
Development testing of the initial Bloodhound SSC hybrid rocket motor was conducted by Daniel Jubb of The Falcon Project with tests conducted in 2008-2013. Publicly disclosed tests were conducted in 2009 and 2012 including a run at Newquay Airport in GB. In addition Daniel Jubb designed, manufactured and test fired a full diameter 18" monopropellant HTP thruster for the subsonic ground tests for Bloodhound SSC. "The Bloodhound team had been developing its own hybrid power unit in collaboration with Manchester based Falcon Project Ltd, and gave this rocket its first UK test firing in October 2012. And although this demonstration was deemed a success at the time, it became clear that considerable sums of money and time would be needed to perfect the design." "Nammo will have test firings next year in Raufoss and when we get the data off those we can decide on precisely what the packaging requirements will be," said Mr Chapman, Bloodhound's chief engineer
In order to accelerate the car to 800mph, the monopropellant rocket would produce around 40kN (8992 lbf) of thrust and the EJ200 jet engine make 90kN (20,232 lbf) in reheat. For the 1,000mph runs, the Nammo hybrid rockets would provide a thrust of 123.75kN (27,820 lbf), generating about 212kN (47,659 lbf) in total.
Engineers produced the scale model which was exhibited at the launch, and integrated the engineering behind the car into its curriculum, working with design team, led by Chief Engineer Mark Chapman. The car was to be built at a site in Bristol. The site was to include an educational centre. A full scale model was unveiled at the 2010 Farnborough International Airshow, when it was announced that Hampson Industries would begin to build the rear chassis section of the car in the first quarter of 2011 and that a deal for the manufacture of the front of the car was due. Chief Engineer Mark Chapman says, "We aim to shake down the vehicle on a runway in the UK at the beginning of 2013." This plan was delayed via lack of funding but by October 2017 full reheat static testing had been undertaken with the jet engine at Cornwall Airport Newquay prior to the start of low speed test runs.
As of October 2018, the car's principal structure had been built, as well as the track it was intended to run on.
Education and STEM outreach
The Bloodhound Project had an education component designed to inspire future generations to take up careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by showcasing these subjects and interacting with young people and students. The offices of Bloodhound Company were moved to UTC Oxfordshire in Didcot in 2016 to improve this link with education.
- Air speed record
- The Bullet Project
- Aussie Invader 5R
- List of vehicle speed records
- North American Eagle Project
- RAF High Speed Flight
- Noble, Green and Team Target 1,000MPH Record Thursday, 23 October 2008
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- Bloodhound SSC weblog of first Monopropellant test firing near Garlock, CA , 12 July 2009. Accessed 31 December 2013.
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- Amos, Jonathan (19 July 2010). "Model of Bloodhound supersonic car unveiled". BBC News. Retrieved 19 July 2010.
- "BLOODHOUND Dynamic testing – Run reports". 2017-10-16.
- "Bloodhound Education". 2012-03-02. Retrieved 4 September 2017.
- Ffrench, Andrew. "Education secretary says parents will have final say on grammar schools during visit". Oxford Times. Retrieved 26 June 2017.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bloodhound SSC.|
- Official website
- Andy Green's Bloodhound SSC diary for the BBC
- Bloodhound SSC at Swansea University
- Bloodhound SSC at the AoC (Association of Colleges) 2010 Annual Conference
- Amos, Jonathan (22 October 2008). "Supersonic car targets 1,000mph". BBC News - Science & Environment. BBC. Retrieved 24 October 2008.
- Semple, Ian (23 October 2008). "Faster than a bullet - the 1,000mph car". The Guardian. Guardian Newspapers. Retrieved 23 October 2008.
- Piper, John (20 March 2009). "Unleash the Bloodhound: How to design a 1,000mph car". The Guardian. Guardian Newspapers. Retrieved 20 March 2009.