BBC Technology — Engineers designing the world’s fastest car believe they now have a solution to keep the vehicle flat on the ground. Bloodhound SSC is being built to smash the world land speed record by topping 1,000mph (1,610km/h).
Initial iterations of the car’s aerodynamic shape produced dangerous amounts of lift at the vehicle’s rear. But the latest modeling work indicates the team has finally found a stable configuration, allowing the project to push ahead with other design areas.
“At Mach 1.3, we’ve close to zero lift which is where we wanted to be,” said John Piper, Bloodhound’s technical director. “Up until this point, we’ve had some big issues. We’ve had lift as high as 12 tonnes, and when you consider the car is six-and-a-half tonnes at its heaviest – that amount of lift is enough to make the car fly,” he told BBC News. “We’re very close now to fixing the exterior aero surface, which really opens the floodgates to the rest of the design work to really get going.”…
To claim the world land speed record, Bloodhound will have to better the mark of 763mph (1,228km/h) set by the Thrust SuperSonic Car in 1997. It will be powered by a combination of a hybrid rocket and a jet engine from a Eurofighter-Typhoon.
Three who worked on Thrust are also engaged in the Bloodhound project, including driver Wing Cmdr Andy Green, project director Richard Noble and chief aerodynamicist Ron Ayres.
They plan to mount their assault on the record in late 2011, driving across a dried up lakebed known as Hakskeen Pan, in the Northern Cape of South Africa. (03/16/10)