Giving me a personal walk-around and tour of the vehicle, the project’s engineering lead, Conor La Grue explains to me the importance of Bloodhound and shares the interesting stories behind some of the vehicle’s 3,500 separate components – many of them custom-made.
They will be amongst the first to see the completed 13.5m streamliner, which uses jet and rocket motors to produce c.135,000 thrust hp. After around eight years of development, he will begin his first attempt, accelerating to speeds of 850mph – and smashing his own land speed record in the process.
So if you want to see supersonic racer Bloodhound first-hand you’ll just have to make the trip to Canary Wharf, where it’s on display until tomorrow.
Next up for the Bloodhound – a trip to South Africa to race on a track built especially for this supersonic machine.
Bloodhound is no stranger to The Manufacturer, we’ve been covering the project’s research, design and manufacturing for nearly six years now. Every area of the auto has been shaped for the best performance, and a number of other factors – including handling at supersonic and subsonic speeds – have been taken into account. The first of these, wearing rubber tires borrowed from a Cold War-era English Electric Lightning jet, will be used during the initial shakedown testing on a runway in the United Kingdom later this year; the solid alloy wheels will be worn on the Hakseen Pan in South Africa during the record attempts.
To put this into context, the current land speed record-holder is the Thrust SSC, which reached a speed of 763mph – 1 228km/h – back in 1997.
“0 to 1,000 miles per hour is 55 seconds”. It has been created by a team of Formula 1 and aerospace experts, with assistance from the Army’s Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers and technicians from the RAF.
Noble broke the record in 1983 when he drove the Thrust2 vehicle to 633mph in the Black Rock desert, and promptly set about trying to beat that record with Thrust SSC, this time piloted by Green.
“The Bloodhound Expo is a project gateway, unveiling the auto is very important to us”, Bloodhound Operations Director, Martyn Davidson, told Gizmag.