The UK-based team, Bloodhound LSR, which shot to prominence in 2015 with an audacious plan to design, assemble and run a vehicle capable of attaining land speeds over 1,000 mph is now halfway to the target.
This week, in South Africa, the team’s car achieved a speed of 501 mph (896 km/h) breaking into the list of 10 fastest cars on Earth. The plan is to surpass the current land speed record of 763.035 mph made by driver Andy Green in 1997. Interestingly, Green himself is behind the driver’s seat at Bloodhound LSR leading the team’s jet-powered car and is aiming to beat his own record.
Green while talking to the media said, “To be honest, it’s like we’ve never been away. I can still remember very clearly what it was like driving ThrustSSC out in the Black Rock Desert in Nevada.”
While there are a lot of similarities between the car Green piloted in 1997 and the current one but there are differences too such as the fact that the current one is powered by an EJ200 Rolls-Royce jet engine which is also used in the Eurofighter Typhoon combat jet.
The real difference according to Green is the team’s capability of reaching a global audience through social media. He recalled getting an email from a family in the UK recently whose five-year-old is following the team’s feats with enthrallment.
Green said, “That’s exactly the effect we’re looking for. “That five-year-old is one day going to be one of the people who builds [and] lives in the high-technology, low-carbon, energy-efficient world of the future.”
He added, “This is the first straight-line racing car of the digital age.”
The project is in two parts, the first part will see the team trying to break the current land speed record and if they are successful then they will go to phase two: 1,000 mph.
Green said, “Ideally, we’d like to try for that next year if we get all the technology and get the rocket set it in time. That’ll depend on our technical partnerships and quickly we get things done.”