** Bristol City Council, the University of the West of England (UWE) and the ss Great Britain Trust have won a bid to build the Bloodhound Supersonic Car (SSC) – which designers hope to take beyond 1,000mph.
Sites next to Brunel’s famous ship and at UWE will be home to the project which is hoped will inspire the next generation of engineers.
** The current record is held by the British Thrust SSC, which managed 763 miles per hour in 1997 – making it the first supersonic car in history.
** The project to smash this record was kicked off today by Science Minister Lord Drayson and Richard Noble, former world land speed record breaker.
Speaking at the event, deputy council leader Simon Cook said the work would be a “massive boost” to the city.
** “Bristol is a city renowned for its world-class creativity, design and advanced engineering and it makes perfect sense for the Bloodhound project to be based here.
“We know it will be a massive boost to the city – attracting national and international attention.
“Its location on Bristol’s historic harbourside, together with the development of a visitor centre and educational facility, will bring the adventure to the widest possible audience.”
For two years, a team based at UWE, led by visiting professor John Piper, has been working on the concept, design and feasibility of the car.
** School pupils in the city will not only have the chance to watch the car being built, but also have the challenges that are faced by the team presented in classes for them to examine and work on themselves – which is hoped will inspire more students to take on engineering as a career.
** UWE vice-chancellor Steve West said that, despite the panic over a lack of engineering students across the UK, numbers on his courses have risen 37% – with some already working on design aspects of the car.
** “Everyone at UWE is thrilled at the decision to bring the Bloodhound project to Bristol. This builds on the significant technology, science and engineering traditions of the greater Bristol Region. We are leading the innovation in science and technology as a Science City.
“UWE has been committed to assisting this project over the past year providing a space for the design team and winning the bid to lead the Higher Education Engagement programme. We have already seen a 37% increase to our engineering courses and some students are actually working on the design of aspects of the car. The seating rig designed by a team of UWE students is currently on view at the Design Museum in London.