Atlas Copco gives Bloodhound project a boost

Posted on 10 Dec 2014 by Jonny Williamson

Atlas Copco has supplied a range of equipment that could play a pivotal role in the development of the Bloodhound Supersonic car (SSC), as the team prepares for an attempt to set a new 1,000mph world land speed record in 2016.

 Editor of The Manufacturer, Callum Bentley recently spoke with Conor La Grue, engineering and supply chain lead for Bloodhound SSC. You can read the resulting feature, ‘Feeding the 1,000mph Bloodhound beast’, here.

At 13.5m in length and weighing in at 7.5 tonnes, to reach its ambitious target the car will need to produce upwards of 135,000 thrust horse power to reach mach 1.4 – six times more power than all the cars on a Formula 1 starting grid combined.

Workshop compressors and air tools from Atlas Copco Compressors are due to be delivered to the Bloodhound Technical Centre in Bristol and its associated test facility at Newquay Aerohub.

Both facilities have also been supported with a range of assembly air tools, hosing and couplings, provided by Atlas Copco Tools, for vehicle build and test operations, initially for the assembly and fabrication on areas of the build such as the stabilising fin and titanium floor.

Atlas Copco supports BLOODHOUND 2
Workshop compressors and air tools are among the equipment due to be delivered.

Going forward, Atlas Copco Tools said it will be working with the build engineers to “identify safety critical applications and solutions, where the ability to ensure critical fastenings are achieved to design specifications.”

Following trails in the UK, Bloodhound SSC will be tested on the Hakskeen Pan on the Northern Cape of South Africa in 2015. A track 12 miles long and two miles wide has been reportedly cleared in preparation for a series of tests held over several months to achieve speeds to break the sound barrier (around 750mph) and the current land speed record (763mph). Then in 2016, the Bloodhound team will attempt to reach 1,000mph.

Described as an “unprecedented feat of engineering”, the project aims to inspire a new generation of science and technology innovators. Indeed, Atlas Copco cites the educational objective of the project is one of the major reasons for its involvement, aligning with its careers programme which encourages the uptake of STEM subjects among school pupils, students, graduates and apprentices.