Bloodhound set to run

The world’s most advanced straight-line racing car, Bloodhound SSC, will be driven for the first time, at Cornwall Airport Newquay, this October.

The first drive comes 20 years after the current record of 763.035mph was set. Wing Commander Andy Green steered Thrust SSC to victory on 15 October 1997 and will be at the wheel of Bloodhound SSC as it is put through its paces this autumn.

Runway trials will mark the culmination of a month of tests to prove the car’s steering, brakes, suspension, data systems, and so on work as intended, as well as the EJ200 jet engine, sourced from a Eurofighter Typhoon. Thousands of visitors are expected to come and see history being made as Bloodhound SSC is driven at speeds of up to 200mph on the 1.7mile (2.7km) long runway.

Before it moves under its own power, Bloodhound SSC will first undergo several days of static ‘tie-down’ tests. The jet engine will be run up, with the car chained to the ground, so that the performance of the car’s bespoke air intake, fuel and electrical systems can be checked. All being well, dynamic testing will then follow on.

Of primary interest is the low-speed capability of the jet engine intake, positioned above the cockpit. Designed to work best at speeds over 800mph, the Project’s engineers need to understand how it performs at very low speeds.

Richard Noble, project director, said, ‘The runway trials at Cornwall Airport Newquay will be the biggest milestone in the history of the project so far. They will provide important data on the performance of the Car and give us a first opportunity to rehearse the procedures we’ll use when we go record breaking.’

He continued, ‘Just as importantly, it is a way of saying ‘thank you’, to the schools, students, families and companies, big and small, who support the project.’