Rocket Man: Land-Speed Racer Pushes 1,000 MpH Barrier [Slide Show]
England's Bloodhound Project successfully tested its booster in October, but other racers are likewise in hot pursuit of the land-speed record
Credits: Courtesy of The Bloodhound Project
NORTH AMERICAN EAGLE The North American Eagle's chassis is a rehabbed F-104 jet fuselage that has completed 31 test runs. The Eagle's top speed will be 1,340 kph (835 mph), and it has gone about 965 kph (600 mph).
Courtesy of North American Eagle
SONIC WIND: In the desert east of Los Angeles, Waldo Stakes, chief executive of California-based Bloodhound competitor Land Speed Research Vehicles, is designing the Sonic Wind, a car he says will crack 3,200 kph (2,000 mph). His propulsion will come from a junked XLR-99 rocket engine built in the 1960s to power the now-defunct X-15 hypersonic research rocket plane. The engine once generated 500,000 horsepower.
Courtesy of Land Speed Research Vehicles
HYBRID ROCKET TEST: During the October test--its first--the Bloodhound engine performed as expected, igniting for 10 seconds and creating 6,350 kilograms (14,000 pounds) of thrust, equivalent to about 35,000 horsepower.
Courtesy of The Bloodhound Project
HOT PURSUIT: Government support, land-speed record holder Andy Green's presence and that of former land-speed record-holder Richard Noble as project director make the Bloodhound Project the team to beat.
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