ZOK’s gas compressor cleaning solutions have been chosen by the British Bloodhound team to assist them when it comes to the land speed record attempt on Hakskeen Pan, in the Northern Cape, in 2013.
ZOK’s gas compressor cleaning product will be used for on-line cleaning the compressor that forms part of the jet engine that powers the Bloodhound supersonic car (SSC) in an attempt to break the current land speed record which was set in 1997. Today the land speed record stands at 762 MPH (1227 km/h). RAF Wing Commander Andy Green, will be driving Bloodhound, currently holds the land speed record, so he is well positioned with his experience as the fastest man on earth to break his own record and drive Bloodhound up to the target speed of 1000 MPH (1600 km/hr) in South Africa next year.
Wing Commander Green explained that there was more to this attempt than breaking a record.
“Yes, we want to break the record, but we also want to create a global showcase for science and technology. The UK, Europe and South Africa have a critical shortage of engineers and scientists. We hope the project will inspire young people to become engineers, mathematicians and scientists.”
ZOK fully supports this endeavour to encourage school children to become excited by this project and follow the challenges that must be overcome to ensure Bloodhound becomes the fastest car on earth! Enthused by the determination and passion of the British Bloodhound team will encourage young scientists and engineers to become the engineers and scientists of tomorrow.
ZOK’s future, like so many British engineering companies, relies on well trained, skilled engineers, scientists and mathematicians to deliver future development and commercial success.
Richard Noble is the driving force behind the entire Bloodhound project, which he kicked off in 2008. This programme encompasses a range of activities and curriculum resources on how a machine could achieve such speeds on land. A number of South African schools are now taking advantage of this resource.
The major thrill, however, still rests in the actual vehicle and that magical run that will make humankind travel ever faster.
Speed fans and aspiring engineers will have to be patient, as the Bloodhound will only be unveiled in the first quarter of 2013.
The second quarter of 2013 will see the start of UK testing, followed by testing at incrementally faster speeds in South Africa.
The Bloodhound has the equivalent horsepower of 180 Formula One (F1) racing cars, and is designed to cover 16 km in less than two minutes, and to blast from zero to 1000 MPG – or 1.4 times the speed of sound– in just 42 seconds.
To achieve this, the vehicle will make use of a rocket, a jet from a fighter aircraft, cleaned for maximum performance by ZOK, and the engine of a F1 racing car.
The flat area at Hakskeen Pan has been carefully chosen from a shortlist of over 30, because it is almost perfect in meeting the team’s requirements. It had to be at least 16 km long, with a 1.6-km clear runoff at each end, and it also had to be flat, as well as firm enough to support the 7 tonne weight of the Bloodhound at full charge.
The only hurdle with this site is the number of stones, and these are being removed by hand by a 300-strong team of Northern Cape locals. The problem with stones is that they could become projectiles. If the front wheels flicked up a stone it could come at the car at the speed of a bullet!
To officially set the record, the Bloodhound SSC will have to complete two runs (in opposite directions) within one hour. The average speed of the two runs will then be taken as the speed achieved. This meant the ability to control the car’s stopping and, therefore, the turnaround time, is key to the success of the record attempt.
ZOK’s part in this project will be to guarantee maximum thrust of the jet engine, by ensuring that it is working at optimum efficiency.