World Land Speed Record Challenge benefits from falling fuel prices
Falling oil prices continue to bring some new year cheer to drivers whether their car has 135bhp…or even 135,000bhp.
Bloodhound SSC (Super Sonic Car) is the British engineering marvel that hopes to smash the FIA World Land Speed Record by 2016 – currently 763mph.
The team includes current record holder and RAF pilot Andy Green, who will be behind the wheel as Bloodhound SSC builds to its ultimate target of 1,000mph.
Green has given an exclusive project update to the AA Magazine, out now. He explained it has taken the Bloodhound SSC project team more than seven years to get to the stage of being able to run the car for the first time.
"From the very start, we've been planning to run the car over two years, which will be 2015/16. We're pushing back the boundaries of physics and it takes time to get everything right. The Americans spent nearly 10 years getting Apollo 11 to the moon and, in land speed record terms, we’re attempting something equally challenging.
"Our target for 2015 is to test the car up to around 800mph. That will get us supersonic – above 750mph – and set a new world record.
"The rest of this year is an assembly process. The car has 3,500 bespoke components, and the back end alone has something like 15,000 rivets holding it together. It's a blend of technology from Formula 1 racing, jet fighters and space rockets and we're using the best from each."
Despite being faster than a speeding bullet*, the Bloodhound is more 'frugal' than you might imagine – up to 430kg of fuel per run – and it only produces the same amount of CO2 in a year as four lactating cows.**
Inspiring the next generation of engineers is a key element of the Bloodhound SSC project. Andy Green says: "The education programme is the vital legacy of this project. We live in a world that needs more scientists and engineers. They are the generation who will build and live in the low carbon, energy-efficient world of the future.
"Bloodhound is about bringing science to life and, working with the Department for Education, we're putting our 'engineering adventure' into every school in the country."
Edmund King, AA president, says: "Whether you're pootling along in Poole or powering across the desert in a blink of an eye, lower fuel prices are a welcome relief to drivers more used to seeing prices rocket faster than a supersonic car.
"We'd like to wish Andy and the rest of the Bloodhound SSC team the best of luck as they sniff out a new world record."