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The Bloodhound Project Rocket engine

Rocket engine

BLOODHOUND SSC will use rockets when it breaks the World Land Speed Record. These will sit at the rear of the Car, below the Eurojet EJ200 jet engine, but we will use different ones when running the Car at 800mph and 1,000mph.

For the 800mph runs the Car will have a single monopropellant rocket, whereas in the 1,000mph Car there will be a cluster of three hybrid rockets. Both designs are being provided by specialist Norwegian company Nammo.

In order to accelerate the Car to 800mph, the monopropellant rocket will produce around 40kN of thrust and the EJ200 jet engine will make 90kN in reheat. For the 1,000mph runs, the Nammo hybrid rockets will provide a thrust of 123.75kN, generating about 212kN in total – that's eight times more power than all the cars on a Formula 1 starting grid combined!

History of BLOODHOUND’s rocket

Initially, BLOODHOUND was intended to be purely rocket-powered. This would have offered certain performance advantages, but the jet engine was added as these are easy to throttle and will enable much of the ‘low speed’ testing – the Car can be run at up to 600mph using the jet engine alone.
 
The Nammo rocket will be used instead of the Falcon Project rocket which initially proved the concept of using an internal combustion engine to pump oxidiser into the rocket in the Car.

Design

The Nammo rocket is a ‘hybrid’ design. This means that it uses a combination of propellants – in this case high test hydrogen peroxide (HTP) as the oxidiser and synthetic rubber as the fuel. Hybrid rockets like this are safe and controllable, as well as being lower cost and greener than alternative methods.

In the Nammo rocket, the HTP is forced through a silver-plated catalyst pack at extremely high temperatures and pressure (around 70 Bar [1,000lb/sq in] at 40 litres per second). Triggered by the catalyst pack, the peroxide, which chemically is H2O2, decomposes into steam (H2O) and oxygen (O2).

This process releases a lot of energy, so that the mixture emerges at around 600°C into the combustion chamber where its extreme heat ignites the fuel. The O2 (oxygen) feeds the fire, making the chemical reaction more vigorous and producing more thrust. This, in turn, heats up to around 3,000°C (twice the temperature of a volcano) and is forced out through a nozzle to produce thrust.

The design of the Nammo rocket is still being finalised, but for the 1,000mph runs it is likely to have a cluster of three or four motors rather than a single large combustion chamber.

The rocket being developed by Nammo for BLOODHOUND will one day power the next generation of European Space Agency (ESA) satellite launchers.

Safety

The rocket oxidiser – HTP – is very reactive, so all the parts of the Car which will come into contact with it have been made of non-reactive materials and have to be ‘passivated’. This means that they need to be pickled in an acid bath to make them inert and remove any possible contaminants that may react with the HTP.

The plumbing also needs to be very good quality to avoid leaks and all storage devices have been carefully made and treated.

Find out more

The rocket doesn’t work in isolation. Find out about:

Find out how hybrid rockets work in our Cisco BHTV episode.

See how the Nammo rocket performed in tests in December 2014, with an explanation of how this hybrid rocket works.

LatestRelated Photos

  • Newquay Oct 12 - the rocket fires
  • Newquay Oct 12 - the rocket ignites
  • Newquay Oct 12 - unpacking the Rocket
  • Newquay Oct 12 - Rocket rig

Project News

Rocket Experts NAMMO Join The BLOODHOUND Project

Thursday, 19 December, 2013

Press Release

The BLOODHOUND Project is proud to announce a new partnership with NAMMO, the rocket propulsion specialists. The company, based in Norway, will supply its hybrid rocket technology for use in BLOODHOUND Supersonic Car, the 1,000 mph Land Speed racing car now being constructed in Bristol, UK.

NAMMO rockets are used by the European Space Agency to separate the stages of Ariane 5, the world’s most reliable & commercially successful satellite launch vehicle.     Read more

Project News

Bloodhound Rocket Firing – Olympus High-Speed Story

Wednesday, 17 October, 2012

News

Placing eight Olympus i-SPEED 3 high-speed video cameras around the largest rocket to have been fired in the UK in 25 years was always going to be a challenge.  Add difficulties such as the fact that the test was to be run in a sealed bomb-proof hangar, communications and control was to be run 3

Cisco Bloodhound TV, Episode 17

BLOODHOUND Hybrid Rocket Test

Friday, 12 October, 2012

Bloodhound TV

Cisco Bloodhound TV Episode 17 visits Newquay Cornwall Airport on October 3rd 2012 for the 18" Hybrid rocket test.

[Original Music by Al Lethbridge]

Project News

Hybrid Rocket Firing 3 Oct 12

Wednesday, 10 October, 2012

News

The 18 inch (45.7 cm) diameter hybrid rocket test held at Newquay Cornwall Airport was a fantastic success. Here is a video clip and some of the pictures from the day.

Project News

Build a Rocket Boys (and girls!)

Thursday, 27 September, 2012

News

See our brilliant new video (with thanks to Elbow for the soundtrack) that shows the internals of the rocket engine and fuel delivery system including inside the Cosworth CA2010 engine (have you ever seen how the petrol burns inside the cylinders?). The page also has a great 'infographic' of key Bloodhound Facts.

Project News

Build a rocket boys

Thursday, 27 September, 2012

News

In some way the fact that no more anchor bolts were needed is a good sign of progress, so it was straight to the site this morning for the briefing.    The main task for today was to move the rocket motor into position.  The first task was to prepare the motor with the load cell, but this was no

Project News

BLOODHOUND To Test Europe's Largest Hybrid Rocket

Wednesday, 26 September, 2012

Press Release

  •     Key milestone in the development of the world’s first 1,000 mph car
  •     Biggest rocket to be fired in the UK for over 20 years

Today, at the Science Media Centre, London, The BLOODHOUND Project outlined the upcoming test of its unique hybrid rocket, which will take place at The Aerohub, Newquay Cornwall Airport, on 3rd October 2012.

Project News

The BLOODHOUND Hybrid Rocket System

Wednesday, 26 September, 2012

Press Release

There are four main elements to BLOODHOUND’s propulsion package: the combustion chamber (containing the solid fuel), the liquid oxidiser, its pumping system, and the associated control kit.

Project News

BLOODHOUND hybrid rocket firing

Thursday, 20 September, 2012

Press Release

Save the date: 3rd October 2012         

The BLOODHOUND Project will test fire its hybrid rocket in the first week of October at the Aerohub, Newquay Cornwall Airport.

The firing will take place on Wednesday October 3rd

Project News

Richard Noble talks to Daniel Jubb

Monday, 29 August, 2011

News

Richard Noble talks to Daniel Jubb about how he got interested in rockets

This is part of the coverage of the BLOODHOUND SSC project for the BBC series Bang Goes the Theory

 

Cisco BLOODHOUND TV - Episode 4

Behind the scenes with the BBC

Monday, 29 August, 2011

Bloodhound TV

In this episode, we go behind the scenes at the Falcon rocket test facility as the BBC film the 6" firing in August 2011 for their flagship science programme Bang Goes The Theory

Engineering News

6 inch rocket test

Friday, 12 August, 2011

News

Friday 12th August 2011: After several days (and long nights) preparing his new UK rocket facility, Daniel Jubb and his Falcon rocket team successfully fired the development 6 inch diameter hybrid rocket today.

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