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The Car Faster Than a Speeding Bullet

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the yeah-but-how's-the-suspension dept.

Transportation 405

pbahra writes "Formula 1 is seen as the apogee of engineering excellence and automotive power. So it says something that in Bloodhound SSC — the car that, if all goes well, in 2013 will shatter the current land speed record — the Cosworth Formula 1 engine is just the fuel pump. 'We are creating the ultimate car; we're going where no-one has gone before,' said Richard Noble, the project director. The car, which Mr. Noble says takes £10,000 a day just to keep it ticking over, will be powered by not one, but two other engines. The smaller one, the EJ200, is normally found in the British Royal Air Force's Typhoon jet. Its job is to get the 13.4 meter long car up to 350 mph. That's when the big one kicks in. The big one is the 18-inch diameter, 12-foot-long Falcon rocket, the largest of its kind ever made in the UK. Its job is to catapult the car through the sound barrier to its maximum speed of 1,050 mph. That is, literally, faster than a speeding bullet."

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Efficiency (2)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412212)

1050 miles per hour, at 1 foot per gallon.

Re:Efficiency (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412256)

I seem to remember reading that nonnuclear aircraft carriers get something like 6in to the gallon.

Re:Efficiency (1)

Archwyrm (670653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412502)

By itself, that is an interesting figure. However, an aircraft carrier is just a bit bigger than a car. Even a big car!

Re:Efficiency (1)

The Grim Reefer2 (1195989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412632)

By itself, that is an interesting figure. However, an aircraft carrier is just a bit bigger than a car. Even a big car!

True, but an aircraft carrier doesn't go over 1K mph either.

Re:Efficiency (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412318)

You know what efficiency is? Me taking a shit in less than 20 seconds. I'm talking full on shit and wipe. Sure there's some dung left over in the crevices of my ass, but what's a little itchy-bum later on when I can get in and out of a stall in less than 20 seconds? Totally worth it, in my opinion.

Re:Efficiency (1, Funny)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412384)

If you're not doing it while posting to /. you're not efficient at all.

Re:Efficiency (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412506)

Geez, Americans...

469.39 m/s at 0.08052 m/L = 5829 L/s.

That's when the big one kicks in. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412218)

The big one is the 18-inch diameter, 12-foot-long Falcon rocket, the largest of its kind ever made in the UK.

A rocket. On a car. Now why does that sound like a terrible idea?

Re:That's when the big one kicks in. (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412226)

It's only a bad idea if you hit a bump and become airborne.

Re:That's when the big one kicks in. (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412400)

At those speeds if you hit a bump it's a crapshoot as to which parts of you will be airborne and which will remain on the ground.

Re:That's when the big one kicks in. (1)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412540)

I've heard tell that they're secretly planning to test their oscillation overthruster [wikipedia.org] design.

Re:That's when the big one kicks in. (2)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412426)

Which of course is the real thing here, this is, for all intents and purposes, a rocket that happens to fly horizontally, very, very close to the ground, that is using a few wheels for stability purposes. It's cool, but it would be cooler to me if the wheels were actually applying power to the road, instead of just being for stability.

Well (0, Troll)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412222)

That's a good use our our civilization's precious natural resources. Sorry, but I hate cars, and I hate spending money maintaining the infrastructure that makes them practical (e.g. without tons of Gov't funds for roads, oil subsidies, etc cars wouldn't have caught on).

Re:Well (2)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412268)

It's not a waste of resources if you learn something by doing it and then pass that knowledge on to others.

As far as subsidizing automobiles, I agree -- the entire automobile infrastructure should be paid for by gas tax and DMV fees. Americans should be paying as much as Europeans do for petrol.

Re:Well (2)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412456)

Well, we already know how to control rockets that go into outer space, and we already know how to make things go fast on the ground.

So I'm not sure who's really going to benefit from putting those two things together.

We already know that going fast on the ground is nowhere near as fast as we can go by not being on the ground. A nice cruise missile would kick this thing's ass in a drag race.

Re:Well (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412832)

I have to agree. I love F1 R&D, but drag racing what amounts to a fighter jet without wings makes me yawn. **yawn**. Now, if it was a piston based IC engine, now you've got my attention!

Re:Well (5, Insightful)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412464)

But what useful knowledge would we gain from this experiment?

I mean, we get supersonic vehicle to stay on the ground at speeds where it would most definitely rather fly. It's not all that useful. We develop air drag model and shape for a vehicle which has no practical purpose, nor ever will. We spend lots of money and resources just to develop a variant of a jet plane we forcibly keep from flying, for no good reason but to call it a "car" and beat a "ground" speed record.

I still say it''s a waste: the little we can actually learn from this could be either learned using vastly less resources, or the resources could be used to learn something vastly more useful.

Re:Well (1, Informative)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412606)

I mean, we get supersonic vehicle to stay on the ground at speeds where it would most definitely rather fly. It's not all that useful. We develop air drag model and shape for a vehicle which has no practical purpose, nor ever will

Bullet trains?

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412670)

This is not just about gaining knowledge, but about inspiring younger generations of people to get into engineering or related fields. How many people were inspired by the space race? Or by Hubble?

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412734)

yeah but I got a way bigger....

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412794)

Exactly my thoughts and majority of people i'd say as well.

This is just some rich egotistic a-hole seeking fame (in the guiness record or some other) for acomplishing nothing usefull.

Re:Well (5, Interesting)

JPRelph (519032) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412830)

I know someone who is involved in the Bloodhound project, working with a large education company over here (one of the sponsors of the car). There is a really big focus on the education side of things with this; they're touring schools and colleges doing presentations, along with a full size replica of the car. One of the big reasons for doing it is to get kids at school interested in science, maths and engineering and that seems like a pretty good idea because there has been a continuing decline in students going on to study those subjects at higher levels in the UK (and I believe most Western countries these days).

There's a bit about it on their website http://www.bloodhoundssc.com/education.cfm [bloodhoundssc.com] . I also doubt that the overall resource usage for the entire project is actually that high (I'd bet fewer resources used than most Hollywood films for instance), so if it increases interest in the areas they're targeting so that general science and engineering gets a bit more attention, I don't think that's too bad a result.

.

Re:Well (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412286)

Nobody cares what you think.

Re:Well (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412324)

fuck you

Re:Well (1)

Alanbly (1433229) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412328)

Work like this is what makes air, hybrid, and rocket-based transportation a reality. Condemning an experiment pushing the limits of engineering because you don't understand its value is pitifully short-sighted.

Re:Well (0)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412650)

Work like this is what makes air, hybrid, and rocket-based transportation a reality.

No, it's not. There is nothing useful to be gained by taking a jet engine and adding the needless constraint of keeping it in contact with the ground.

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412770)

Yes, there is, while we have the technology to travel to the moon and back, faster than the speed of sound several times over, we can't do it constantly. Because we lack the engineering knowledge. Things like this help, if even just a little, just be designing a better widget will help.

Consider how cars developed when they first appeared, they weren't made in labs by a dozen eggheads, but by a few rich enthusiasts that pushed the limits and funded those that had the know-how. Which they shared, and others added to it.

The same goes for every other invention, all those early aircraft, hell, look back as far as the steam engine and hot air balloons.

Making a vehicle go faster than the speed of sound doesn't involve just one big engine as you say it, but a host of others.

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412786)

I agree. There's also nothing useful to be gained by taking a perfectly good magnetic field and adding the needless constraint of a coiled wire that must remain in contact with electricity! Let someone else do the thinking and discovering, we're old!

Re:Well (5, Funny)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412380)

People like you are why socialism doesn't work.

Re:Well (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412718)

Exactly, without narrow-minded right-wing whiners Socialism would work just great.

Re:Well (0)

idontgno (624372) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412774)

Good point. The closest Socialism has ever come to working is when it availed itself of the State right to execute narrow-minded right-wing whiners, along with anyone else the Great Leader concluded was an Enemy of the People.

Re:Well (1, Insightful)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412392)

I bet you also buy all your goods locally produced, eh? Oh, wait, you have a computer which means you use the international product distribution system (including roads) you twit.

Re:Well (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412622)

Most international shipping is done via ships, then it goes onto a train and finally a truck. No reason why roads could not be self funding via fuel taxes. If anything it would make the market forces act more rationally and would increase the use of trains thus decreasing fossil fuel consumption. What exactly have you got against a functioning rational market?

Re:Well (0)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412414)

Gasoline is $0.50/lb. Hardly what I'd call "precious".

Re:Well (4, Insightful)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412480)

That's a good use our our civilization's precious natural resources.

Well that's kind of who we are as a civilization. We climb mountains because they are there. We landed on the moon, half because we wanted to challenge ourselves (and half to show our economic system was better than communism...).

It's a general feature of life to use resources like mad without thinking long-term until the resource is nearly depleted and we have no choice. Natural selection really grilled that lesson in deep before it gave us brains smart enough to begin to question it.

Re:Well (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412594)

In itself it uses very little of the earth's resources, and nobody is considering making a production version of this car.

What they're hoping to do is encourage people to go into engineering. It will be engineers who find ways to make cars more efficient or to replace them entirely.

Re:Well (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412604)

That's a good use our our civilization's precious natural resources. Sorry, but I hate cars, and I hate spending money maintaining the infrastructure that makes them practical (e.g. without tons of Gov't funds for roads, oil subsidies, etc cars wouldn't have caught on).

What use is a baby?

Re:Well (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412646)

You can eat it for one. It also can be used when it grows to childhood for all kinds of labor.

Re:Well (3, Funny)

sconeu (64226) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412706)

I guess that is a rather modest proposal....

Re:Well (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412616)

I really don't see how this rocket car and government highway subsidies are more than tangentially related. It just looks more like a random rant than anything else. I guess the best you can do is try to have everything you don't like taxed out of existence.

Re:Well (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412630)

Shut the fuck up, you hippie.

How do you get around?

Daniel Jubb's Mustache (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412232)

My God

The Challenge (5, Insightful)

Spazmania (174582) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412236)

The real challenge is not getting a vehicle to go that speed... It's getting a vehicle to stay on the ground and under control at that speed.

Re:The Challenge (2)

dna_(c)(tm)(r) (618003) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412322)

The real challenge is not getting a vehicle to go that speed... It's getting a vehicle to stay on the ground and under control at that speed.

Right. And that's where the really, really, REALLY big one kicks in to generate enough downforce. It's a bundle of 5 modified Saturn V's.

Re:The Challenge (2)

Anubis IV (1279820) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412634)

Would've been funnier if you hadn't chosen a number greater than the number of Saturn Vs still in existence. There are basically three mostly-complete ones on display: one at Johnson Space Center, one at Kennedy, and one at Huntsville, Alabama at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center. There's a replica at the last one too, as well as a few other sections scattered around various exhibits and museums around the country.

Re:The Challenge (1)

99luftballon (838486) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412526)

Agreed, it was a problem with the first record this crew did with Thrust SSC. The wind tunnel work they did was almost all about stopping take-off and the nose of the craft was packed with sensors monitoring for catastrophic lift.

Re:The Challenge (1)

Princeofcups (150855) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412550)

The real challenge is not getting a vehicle to go that speed... It's getting a vehicle to stay on the ground and under control at that speed.

Exactly. It shouldn't be "fastest car." It should be "lowest flying rocket." And when you think about it, what exactly is the point of building such a rocket?

Re:The Challenge (1)

Animats (122034) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412682)

The real challenge is not getting a vehicle to go that speed... It's getting a vehicle to stay on the ground and under control at that speed.

Right. Producing enough downforce has dominated racing for years. Power hasn't been the problem for decades.

I'll say this like Vlad! (1)

mapzta (1924598) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412250)

LYTTE KVIIL! Bleeiiigggh!

Re:I'll say this like Vlad! (1)

Archwyrm (670653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412602)

Ved Balders baller!

Damn Thats Fast (0)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412258)

I remember my dad telling me a story about a guy who affixed some jet-motor to his car out in the salt-flats. After engaging the motor and going for the land speed record, the car went airborne (he lost all breaking and steering naturally, flying him miles further than he thought and straight into a cliff wall.

All they recovered of him was some particulate bio-mass in the steering wheel, mostly finger-nail fragments. Hopefully these folks have an airborne contingency plan, for 1050mph is pretty unforgiving (thats faster than almost all commercial airliners fly). Just the bow shock alone on the desert floor seems like it will cause stability issues.

Re:Damn Thats Fast (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412336)

I believe the contingency plan is, "If the vehicle becomes airborne, place your head firmly between your knees and kiss your ass goodbye!"

Did you fall for... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412348)

...one of the oldest, most famous (and frankly, most blatantly obvious) email hoaxes of all time, or are you well aware it's a hoax and simply trying to perpetuate it?

I'm tending towards the latter. There can't be more than five people left on the internet who *don't* know this story's rubbish any more, surely.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/JATO_Rocket_Car [wikipedia.org]

Re:Damn Thats Fast (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412496)

I remember my dad telling me a story about a guy who affixed some jet-motor to his car out in the salt-flats. After engaging the motor and going for the land speed record, the car went airborne (he lost all breaking and steering naturally, flying him miles further than he thought and straight into a cliff wall.

All they recovered of him was some particulate bio-mass in the steering wheel, mostly finger-nail fragments. Hopefully these folks have an airborne contingency plan, for 1050mph is pretty unforgiving (thats faster than almost all commercial airliners fly). Just the bow shock alone on the desert floor seems like it will cause stability issues.

Alas, this story is an urban legend. I wished it were true also :)

http://www.snopes.com/autos/dream/jato.asp

Re:Damn Thats Fast (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412744)

That's the JATO car story. It's on the Darwin Awards site (among others) - as an Urban Legend. (But it sure makes for a good story.)

1050mph ... that MIGHT be fast enough to catch a glimpse of the Coyote, but it won't be enough to beat the Road Runner ...

1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (3, Informative)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412296)

1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet.

Well, maybe it is fairly good for a pistol.

But it is about half the speed of a 5.56mm NATO round from an M-16.

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (3, Informative)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412462)

1540 feet per second is a respectable bullet.

Handgun rounds generally are around 1000 feet per second. 30 caliber carbine is about 1500 fps.

Yeah a .223 which is one of the small and fast rounds can push 2500 feet/second or higher. The fastest rifle rounds go around 3800... but still I'd consider anything over 800 fps to qualify as "faster than a speeding bullet".

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412570)

A hot 9mm Parabellum can get close to that speed.

Magnum pistol rounds often get higher.

Every military rifle ammunition that pops into my head gets at least 2000 feet per second.

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412812)

Every military rifle ammunition that pops into my head gets at least 2000 feet per second.

All I can say is ouch!

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412736)

What are you talking about?
9mm loaded hot go that fast. .308 goes a lot faster, so does my .300 winmag. Loaded with the nice barnes copper rounds that goes 3500 fps. In case you doubt me, here is the proof:
http://www.federalpremium.com/products/details/rifle.aspx?id=750 [federalpremium.com]

A .223 is not a fast round. I have owned air rifles that beat 800 fps.

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (1)

reboot246 (623534) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412776)

Check your ballistics chart. There are many commonly used center-fire rifle rounds that leave the barrel much faster than 1540 fps, and a bunch of them that top that speed even at 500 yards.

All of Remington's .223's leave the muzzle faster than 3000 fps.

Remington publishes very comprehensive charts for their cartridges online. Google it.

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412486)

It's faster than most common civilian rounds (.22LR, 9mm, .45ACP basically anything other than a high power long rifle)

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412754)

Only if you load heavy bullets, its about the same or under most calibers. Especially since all the calibers you listed are 50+ years old.

Granted that is muzzle velocity, and they will bleed speed as they go down range....my long distance rifle shoots a 180gr with 3300fps muzzle velocity but has dropped to ~2200fps at 500yds

fancy car 1050mph = 1540fps

22LR 1000-1800fps
45ACP 900-1300fps
45LC 900-1300fps
9mm 1200-1600fps
357 1200-1600fps
44 1300-1700fps

30-30 1600-2600
308(7.62x51) 2600-2900

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412772)

9mm is that fast and loaded hot can be pushed higher. .22 is for kids and shooting rats/squirrels, might as well claim this is faster than a pellet gun.
Normal power rifles are much faster, heck many pistol rounds are.

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412492)

Pistol a gun and shoots bullets? Yes, then I guess it's still faster than a speeding bullet. The phrase isn't "faster than a speeding bullet shot from a weapon to be determined by Nadaka from Slashdot."

Re:1050 MPH? Thats not very fast for a bullet. (0)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412648)

Depends on who you ask.

I know people who will tell you that a pistol is what you use just long enough to make your way to the nearest rifle.

I know others that would say that anything that doesn't require a crew to operate isn't a gun.

No Ramp? Not Interested (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412320)

If there's anything that can make a triple jet powered car cooler, it's launching it up off a ramp.

Re:No Ramp? Not Interested (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412484)

Things traveling at 1000 mph tend to act more like fluids upon collision. Even if the ramp had a relatively mild slope, it would be hard not to just become a smear on the surface of it.

Re:No Ramp? Not Interested (2)

gclef (96311) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412804)

And you don't want to see that? Especially with slow-motion replay?

I have an idea! (1)

icannotthinkofaname (1480543) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412358)

Wait, wait, wait - so what happens if I fire a speeding bullet from the car while the car is in motion?

Re:I have an idea! (1)

by (1706743) (1706744) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412382)

It would be pretty snazzy to fire a gun from the car at such an angle that you end up running into the bullet from behind (at a slow relative speed).

Re:I have an idea! (1)

hldn (1085833) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412664)

no, they should fire the bullet in a forward arc such that the bullet impacts the driver in the back of the head.

Re:I have an idea! (1)

3vi1 (544505) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412688)

The bullet comes out pretty fast. ME-262's were doing it 70 years ago.

F1 not the "apogee of...automotive power." (1)

by (1706743) (1706744) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412360)

TFS:

Formula 1 is seen as the apogee of engineering excellence and automotive power.

F1 may be the pinnacle of engineering excellence (though Le Mans racers may give 'em a run for the their money...?), but in terms of raw "automotive power," NHRA Top Fuel [wikipedia.org] has F1 beat by an order of magnitude (F1 ~ 1k bhp, Top Fuel ~ 10k bhp).

True, a dragster may not be able to run for more than a few seconds without blowing up, but that's beside the point...

Re:F1 not the "apogee of...automotive power." (1)

caitsith01 (606117) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412434)

F1 is of course very heavily limited. Engine size, for example, is intentionally capped.

It used to be a relative free-for-all but the cars got too fast to be safe (at least in the minds of the FIA).

This not a car. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412394)

This is a missile with wheels.

I would consider it to be a car if it had a transmission, could idle, turn, stop and go again.

This "car" is ignite, hold on to dear life, and stop when the fuel runs out or you crash.

Re:This not a car. (3, Interesting)

hort_wort (1401963) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412448)

I took a tire off my car and dropped it on the ground. Suddenly the Earth had a wheel. Now the Earth is not only the largest car, but also the fastest -- going around the Sun at 67,000 mph....

Re:This not a car. (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412460)

If they use a formula 1 engine as a fuel pump, they can probably turn that engine off, to turn the rocket off.

nice (2)

DaveGod (703167) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412418)

That'll cut down on the commute, but what's the CO2?

it's a bullet, it's a plane, no....it's a car (1)

schlachter (862210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412438)

might we say the only diff between something like this and a plane is that it has wheels that stay on the ground (hopefully!). It's got surfaces tuned for precise lift (or lack thereof), jet engines, and stabilizing fins.

Competiting team: Aussie Invader (4, Informative)

femto (459605) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412470)

Also of interest, is the Australian Competitor [aussieinvader.com] . The "Aussie Invader" team is attempting to beat the Brits, while using a fraction of the budget.

Re:Competiting team: Aussie Invader (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412840)

Because they stole everything they needed to get this done?

A strange breed (2)

99luftballon (838486) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412478)

I met Nobel and Andy the pilot/driver when Thrust SSC was going and they are both very enthusiastic, utterly committed to breaking land speed records and madder than a sack of badgers. Green said the weirdest thing about the whole drive was dealing with the brain's capacity to process relative speed, or rather the lack of ability to do so. At the end of the run he'd found himself getting ready to brake hard as the vehicle felt like it was going slowly enough and found he was still going around 400mph.

Re:A strange breed (1)

Reeses (5069) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412766)

It also highlights the brain's ability to adapt to ludicrously high speeds, which has come in handy as we've gone further up the technological progress curve.

Idle Entertainment (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412490)

This reminds me of the many times I watched in fascination as I burned a plastic model I had built but no longer held my fancy. Really, is he going to wear a Wyle E. Coyote suit?

Why? (4, Interesting)

Timmmm (636430) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412534)

I hate to be the one to say it, but this does seem utterly pointless.

Not in the "we should be spending money on hospitals" sense, but rather "all you're doing is taking a rocket and trying to cripple its flying tendencies". There are so many more cool inspire-the-kids (which is the nominal point) projects they could do! Here are some crazier and more cool ideas I just had:

* A manned quadrocopter.
* A massive computer-controlled Archimedes mirror.
* An Asimov-style multi-speed travelator.
* A Back to the Future hover-board using active magnetic levitation.

Those would all be way more awesome than "Oh its a rocket with wheels attached". /rant.

Re:Why? (1)

Thinine (869482) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412824)

Massive computer-controlled Archimedes mirrors already exist in dozens of large reflector telescopes.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412846)

A rocket doesn't fly, a rocket just thrusts in whichever direction it is pointing. We happen to point them up, which is why they appear to fly.

But a slow bullet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412546)

At a bit over 1,500 fps, it's slower than most rifles and well under half the speed of some of the speedier calibers.

1050 mph = 1540 feet per second (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412564)

That is one slow bullet. Faster than a very slow bullet maybe, this is only modern pistol round velocities. Heck, some pistols like the FN Five-seven chuck rounds faster than this.

Re:1050 mph = 1540 feet per second (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412742)

Not faster than a rifle round, but certainly on par with a .45 round.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.45_ACP

Car? (1)

Fractal Dice (696349) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412624)

In my opinion, just because a rocket has wheels doesn't make it a car.

Wait, what? (1)

pyalot (1197273) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412660)

So the job of the 800 break horse power internal combustion engine is to deliver fuel into the rocket engine (not the jet engine). But the rocket is a solid fuel booster (essentially a glorified fireworks motor). Err wait, what? What do you need a fuel pump for a solid fuel rocket booster?

See how fast without rockets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412662)

I've never been overly impressed with rocket car speeds. They're basically planes (or rockets) with as much down force as possible to keep it on the ground. Almost the same way the fastest person in athletic walking wont get too much respect.
See how fast you can get a vehicle by turning wheels. Then we can call that the fastest car.

No word about brakes (1)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412680)

What's the point, I guess. I guess that is what cliff walls are for, eh?

Air Tech (1)

phizi0n (1237812) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412694)

Technology that can be used to fly should not count for LAND-speed records. Strapping freaking jet engines and rockets onto a car and keeping it from lifting off just makes it a jet-rocket that never lifts off.

Is it really a car (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412768)

Is something like this really a car? The only thing it has in common is tires. If I strap tires to a whale, would that also be a car?

If you cannot drive it through normal city traffic, can it really be considered a car? This thing would have problems just avoiding tall buildings, shorter ones would just be flown over.

no surprise to me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412788)

The Brits have always made the best engines in the world. Look at the history of Rolls Royce if you've any doubt about that - e.g. the only thing that gave Russian jets a chance in the Korean war was the fact that all our technology was donated to them.

Apart from the odd party piece like this car, we are nowhere now. Put that down to the inept policies of Thatcher and successive idiotic administrations.

You people are so fucking depressing (3, Insightful)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412800)

I've just been scrolling through some of the comments above. "Why bother?" "Spend money on hospitals!" "What are we going to learn from this?" "This isn't really a car because the power isn't going through the wheels." "Waste of money!" "There are cooler projects to spend money on!"

You know what? Get over yourselves!

Every time I see a cool story posted on /. I find myself bracing for the impact of a squillion know-it-all comments about how useless it is from the usual armchair "I call bullshit" merchants who think they have all the answers to all the world's problems. Oftentimes it's American commenters from the "not invented here" lobby who want to pull a World Cup defence and say "Well it's a bullshit competition anyway so we don't care if we get whipped!" Grow the fuck up! The Brits have made the land speed record their own and I for one tip my hat to them. It's a great way to inspire kids to get involved in engineering, just like your toy with the heavy wings and expensive heat shield up there at the minute.

So the UK government is pushing a sponsorship-funded R&D project that doesn't have immediate commercial payoff. Big deal! What would you prefer to spend the money on? Another day in Iraq?

Jesus wept! Can we not have a story posted on here anymore without having to wade through all this obnoxious crap?

Oh, and I have karma to burn, so knock yourself out if you don't like a bit of straight talking.

fuel pump? (3, Informative)

zardor (452852) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412810)

Strictly speaking, the F1 engine is actually the oxidiser pump for the hybrid rocket engine - it runs the peroxide pump.

(i'll go back and lock myself in the basement now)

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