At the Aerohub, Newquay Cornwall Airport, the BLOODHOUND Project successfully tested its unique hybrid rocket system, for first time.
Bell Stone Associates Ltd have had the exciting opportunity of being involved as a sponsor of the Bloodhound project. One we have very much enjoyed this summer. Supporting this project has required a lot of work indeed. We have though been happy to provide all the advertisement for this project; which included producing and installing advertising banners, staging areas, display screens, and most importantly the gantry that housed the rocket itself! At 4 meters (12 feet) long, 45.7 cm (18 inches) in diameter and 450kg in weight, BLOODHOUND’s rocket is the largest of its kind ever designed in Europe and the biggest to be fired in the UK for 20 years.
During the test, which was streamed live to the web, the rocket burned for 10 seconds, generating 14,000 lbs of thrust – 30 – 40,000 equivalent hp. Sound levels at the rocket nozzle reached 185 dB, many times that of a Boeing 747 at take off.
Today’s test represents the most significant milestone yet for the global education programme as it develops the world’s first 1,000 mph / Mach 1.4 racing car.
The term ‘hybrid’ stems from the fact that BLOODHOUND’s rocket combines solid fuel (a synthetic rubber) with a liquid oxidiser (High Test Peroxide, or HTP) reacting with a catalyst (a fine mesh of silver) to produce its power. Although technically demanding, this approach is, we believe, the safest and most controllable option, allowing driver Andy Green to shut off the flow of oxidiser and extinguish the rocket, if required.
The Team also used the event to practise the safety protocols and rocket handling procedures they will use in 12 month’s time, when BLOODHOUND begins its supersonic campaign at Hakskeen Pan, South Africa.