The Bloodhound LSR is continuing to impress during testing on the Kalahari desert, with the jet-powered monster having exceeded the 500mph barrier for the first time last week.
As you’d probably expect, the flyby footage (52 seconds in the embed above, although we’d recommend watching the whole video), is quite something.
And to think, this isn’t even the Bloodhound’s final form. As confirmed by LSR driver Wing Commander Andy Green today, engineers from Norwegian aerospace company Nammo have been present at the tests in South Africa. They have with them a mock-up of the rocket that will eventually be added to the supersonic car.
The booster will supplement the Rolls-Royce EJ200 Eurofighter Typhoon jet engine that currently powers Bloodhound on its own, helping the team achieving its phase I goal of reaching 800mph. This will nab the Land Speed Record away from Thrust SSC, but it’s just the start - all being well, the endgame will be 1000mph.
The test sessions haven’t been entirely without issue. A sudden sandstorm stopped one of the high-speed runs, and on another, an erroneous fire warning stopped play. The rear ‘deltas’ have also taken a “battering,” Green says, with debris from the aforementioned dust storm peeling back the bodywork (see above). Some sturdier patches of metal have since been bonded and screwed in place to get around this problem.
Overall, though, these early stages of the Bloodhound LSR project seemed to be going swimmingly. The next step? Hitting 550mph.