The Bloodhound LSR reached a new top speed of 628mph as it wrapped up testing in South Africa ahead of a planned assault on the land speed record in around a year.
The British machine, driven by current land speed record holder Andy Green, has completed a series of test runs of increasing speed on a specially prepared track on the Hakskeen Pan over the past month. Powered by a EJ200 Eurofighter Typhoon jet engine, Bloodhound completed its final test run with Green accelerating to 615mph before lifting off the throttle.
The run was part of a test programme to evaluate how much drag Bloodhound generates at a variety of speeds, with data gathered from 192 sensors then compared with the figures previously calculated using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations. That data will determine the size and power of the Nammo-built rocket that will be fitted to Bloodhound for the final record bid.
“The stability and confidence the car gives me as a driver is testament to the years of world class engineering that has been invested in her by team members past and present,” said Green.
“With all the data generated by reaching 628mph [1010 km/h], we’re in a great position to focus on setting a new world land speed record in the next year or so.”
Ian Warhurst, the British businessman who stepped in to save the project from administration, said hitting the speed was “a real milestone”. He added: “We will now move our focus to identifying new sponsors and the investment needed to bringing Bloodhound back out to Hakskeen Pan in the next 12 to 18 months’ time.”
The current land speed record, set by Green in Thrust SSC in 1997, is 763.035mph. When Bloodhound was first launched, the ultimate target was to try and eclipse 1000mph.