Bloodhound SSC: supersonic vehicle gears up for first public test

A man working on Bloodhound SSC. Pic Bloodhound SSC

A man working on Bloodhound SSC. Pic Bloodhound SSC

A British supersonic auto now under development has its first public test drive at Cornwall airport in Newquay, south-west England.

Bloodhound is the world's most advanced straight-line racing vehicle, created to reach 1,000mph, it will attempt to break the world land speed record in 2019.

Many of those who set that record are back to break it, including Wing Commander Andy Green who drove Thrust SSC (Super Sonic Car) in the Arizona desert, making history as the first person to breach the sound barrier at 763.035 miles per hour.

Coat by Belstaff, £725.

Green was the man who literally drove through the sound barrier into the record books 20 years ago while at the wheel of Bloodhound's predecessor, Thrust SSC.

Glasses by Belstaff, £215. But, once the full rocket cluster has been added to the Eurofighter jet engine - generating the full 135,000hp - and speeds reach the planned 1,000mph, solid aluminium units will be required to cope with the 50,000g they will be exposed to.

Green and his team ran the jet and rocket-powered vehicle up to and beyond 200mph, using its EJ200 Eurofighter engine on the Cornish airport's main runway and pushing it to maximum reheat - or afterburner - phase. Over 20 years later, he will be making the first public tests of a auto created to go over 1000mph.

As the tests will see the Bloodhound traveling at relatively slow speeds, it will use refurbished rubber Dunlop tires from 1960s English Electric Lightning jet fighters.

Thanks to the rocket's insatiable demand for fuel, Bloodhound is fitted with a Jaguar V8 auxiliary engine purely to serve as a rocket fuel pump, delivering high-test peroxide at a rate of 40 litres per second.

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