Jet Coatings for Supersonic Car
April 1, 2010
The British-built rocket and jet-powered supersonic car BLOODHOUND SSC, designed to break the land speed record and be the first to drive through the 1000 mph barrier, has been coated in paints designed for high-flying jets and military aircraft.
The special coatings were specified and donated by AkzoNobel Aerospace Coatings, who are more used to providing paint systems for the world’s commercial airlines and air forces. “As this vehicle will be up against many of the operational and environmental conditions usually experienced by jet aircraft, aerospace coatings are the natural choice,” explained Martin Carter, Technical Manager of AkzoNobel Aerospace Coating’s UK operation. “We were delighted to have the chance to supply the coatings for such an unusual and iconic vehicle.”
BLOODHOUND SSC (Super Sonic Car), developed under project director Richard Noble, will be driven by Royal Air Force pilot Andy Green, a partnership that broke the current land speed record of 763 mph with the Thrust SSC, the first car to break the sound barrier.
The new record-breaking attempt is scheduled to begin in 2011, with a target speed of 800 mph before the car is reviewed and modified to aim for the magic 1000 mph. To break the boundaries, the supersonic car is powered by a Eurojet EJ200 and a Falcon hybrid rocket. The project is mainly funded by corporate sponsorship and public support and has a wider educational remit to teach, demonstrate and build understanding of the careful use and management of energy. If it is to achieve its target speed, the BLOODHOUND SSC vehicle will be have to be the most fuel-efficient Mach 1.4 manned vehicle ever.
AkzoNobel Aerospace Coatings specified products for BLOODHOUND from their Alumigrip® range, a favorite of the business aviation market where high definition, vivid and colorful finishes also need to be tough and durable. The Alumigrip products guarantee a smooth surface that will reduce aerodynamic drag. Two brand new specific BLOODHOUND colors – in shades of blue and orange – have been developed by AkzoNobel within the Leicester Aerospace facility. These colors will be unique to this vehicle.
A full-scale model of the BLOODHOUND SSC was constructed on the Isle of Wight. Aerocomposites Ltd. is the preferred specialist coating facility where the coatings are being applied. “We have provided a full technical advice and backup service, just as we would with a jet that flies,” Martin added. “Everyone in our office has been excited by the project and we will be following its progress every step of the way!”