12ft long and 992lbs, say hello to the Bloodhound, a rocket which could break the world land speed record within the next couple of years.
On Wednesday, at Newquay Cornwall Airport, the team behind the Bloodhound will, for the first time, fire up an engine expected to reach 1050mph, almost 300mph quicker than the current record of 763mph. The record-breaking attempt will actually be made in South Africa in 2014.
Chief Engineer Mark Chapman confirmed:
“‘Pretty much anything we get out of Newquay next week will be a success. It is unusual that the public are seeing a rocket very early in development. When you see this thing work or fail it will be the first time we see it work or fail. The worst thing that could happen is nothing could happen, but that also lets us know what else has failed. (The car could) partly explode, but that was all part of the development test.”
The bloodhound houses an 800bhp engine, a Typhoon jet fighter’s engine at the rear and a Falcon rocket attached on the top! Backed by the Ministry of Defence, 50-year old Wing Commander Andy Green from the RAF will hope to tame the beast and also inspire a generation of schoolchildren with his heroic daring!
“We’re running an education programme called Bloodhound to break that record and share the technology with a whole generation of young people. This is much bigger than just another land speed record. All of the technology we have to develop, it’s not commercially sensitive, it’s not militarily sensitive, there’s no competition because there are no other Bloodhounds in the world. We can share all of it, and that gives us the ability to reach out to a generation of young people to give them something iconic, exciting and simple – like driving in a straight line – and look at the science, the technology, the maths, the environmental science.”