Remember the Bloodhound, the supersonic vehicle that was supposed to hit South Africa in 2016 to take a crack at the world land-speed record? Well, less a crack than a complete sundering given that they’re after a 1,610km/h top speed. Well, it’s back.
A funding problem pushed back the Bloodhound SSC’s burn across Haksteen Pan in the Northern Cape to 2017 and we haven’t heard a whole lot about the venture since the delay in February 2016. Yeah, that’s all changed. We’ve got a date for the first record attempt, which places it in October 2017.
Before the Bloodhound is loaded onto a CargoLogicAir Boeing 747 freighter and shipped to SA to begin its run next year, there’s a test-shot planned at Newquay in the UK. That’s supposed to take place in June 2017 and will see the rocket-vehicle reaching a top speed of 354km/h. Assuming success there, it’s off to Hacksteen Pan for that world land-speed record attempt.
The delay, due to a lack of funds, has been cleared up. The venture said, in a website post, that “The recent signing of major deals means The BLOODHOUND Project now has sufficient funding pledged to complete the car and start the countdown to high speed testing at the Hakskeen Pan, Northern Cape, South Africa, in Autumn next year. The identity of the new partner(s) will be revealed in due course.”
The group behind the Bloodhound SSC are probably loving the symmetry of their record attempt. Many of the same people involved were part of the Thrust SSC project, which led to the current world land-speed record of 1277.98 km/h. That record was set on 15 October 1997, so an October attempt here in South Africa would put it near or on the twentieth anniversary of the previous record. As it happens Bloodhound’s driver, fighter pilot Andy Green, was behind the wheel of the Thrust SSC as well. That’s nice and circular too. We can’t wait.
Source: Bloodhound SSC