Home News Covid-19 forces Bloodhound project into hibernation

Covid-19 forces Bloodhound project into hibernation


According to the Bloodhound Land Speed Record site, Covid-19 has had an impact on discussions with potential sponsors.

The Bloodhound project has been put into hibernation until the Covid-19 epidemic has passed.

According to the Bloodhound Land Speed Record site, Covid-19 has had an impact on discussions with potential sponsors.

“The team has taken the decision to hibernate the project until the pandemic has passed. This will inevitably have an impact on the planned 2021 World Land Speed Record attempt,” Ian Warhurst, Bloodhound’s CEO said.

“Rightfully, the world has more important things to focus on right now. Discussions with a number of global brands were looking promising when COVID-19 struck, but the sponsorship industry literally shut down.

“This means our ability to raise the necessary funds in time and, consequently, the window to conduct the LSR campaign safely in 2021 is now very likely to be missed. As a result, we are planning to go into hibernation to reduce the monthly overheads to an absolute minimum, and we’ll reboot conversations with potential sponsors later in the year.”

Earlier this year, the team announced that time was running out to raise the funding required to attempt the new supersonic world land speed record within the 2021 weather window on the Hakskeenpan in the Northern Cape.

According to Bloodhound, the team had to secure sufficient funding commitments by the end of March 2020 in order to meet the financing requirements sufficient to re-form the team of aerospace and motorsport experts and complete development of the land speed record specification car, which includes the monopropellant rocket, electric oxidiser pump, fuel system upgrades, braking mechanisms and winglets on the tail fin.

“Following the successful high-speed test programme where the team reached a top speed of 628mph/1 010kmh in the Kalahari Desert, that team together with the jet-powered car and associated equipment is now back at the operations HQ in Gloucestershire, UK. The car has been split apart for cleaning, inspection and maintenance and the jet engine removed and returned to Rolls-Royce for storage,” Bloodhound said.

“In order to reach speeds above 800mph Bloodhound LSR will need a state-of-the art rocket to run in addition to its jet engine. This will be provided by Norwegian rocket specialist Nammo. As part of a research programme for the European Space Agency, Nammo has designed a compact, zero-emissions rocket to be used as a launch motor to put small satellites into space. The size and power of this rocket makes it ideal for use in Bloodhound LSR.”

Warhurst said at the time: “The clock is ticking to raise the necessary investment to re-group the team and crack on with the rocket programme and other car upgrades in time to hit our 2021 deadlines. If we miss our cool weather window in July and August, temperatures in the Kalahari will make running a rocket untenable next year.”

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