Project Bloodhound Is Officially Dead After Failing To Secure Funding

Pilot Andy Green stands beside the Bloodhound 1,000mph supersonic racing car before its first public run at Cornwall Airport near Newquay

Pilot Andy Green stands beside the Bloodhound 1,000mph supersonic racing car before its first public run at Cornwall Airport near Newquay

The aim was simple: to build a jet auto that would beat the current 763-mph land speed record and break the 1,000-mph barrier. And the auto itself is available for the cost of only around $318,000.

Founded in 2007 by Richard Noble and Andy Green (who set the existing land speed record of 763.035 miles per hour with ThrustSSC back in 1997) the project had aimed to hit speeds of 1000 miles per hour at a specially built, 18km long, 1500m wide race track at Hakskeen Pan in the deserts of the Northern Cape of South Africa.

Engineers work on the Bloodhound car in Bristol
Engineers work on the Bloodhound car in Bristol

The team planned to take the Bloodhound SSC to southern Africa towards the end of 2019 for some high-speed testing on Hakseen Pan, a dry lake bed that had already been prepared for the land speed record attempt. The team tried to find around $33 million in funding to complete the project. "We have basically completed the main structure, the desert is ready, we just need the funding". The Bloodhound SSC was born, powered by the same Rolls-Royce EJ200 jet engine used by the Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jet. Its thrust was planned to be augmented by a trio of rocket motors to assist with reaching its four-digit top speed, but despite the vehicle being effectively complete, Bloodhound doesn't have enough money to pursue the record any further. Individual donations from members of the public have also supported the development of the vehicle and the global education program.

But joint administrator Andrew Sheridan said on Friday: "Since the company entered into administration we have worked tirelessly with the directors to identify a suitable individual or organisation who could take the project forward".

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