Additive Manufacturing Strategies

1,000 MPH Record Attempting Bloodhound Car to Feature 3D Printed Titanium Steering Wheel

ST Medical Devices

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Speed, some people have an addiction to it, while others like British driver Andy Green are infatuated with it. So much so that he currently holds the all time land speed record for driving a vehicle. How fast you may ask? Only a measley 763 miles per hour. Andy originally broke the record almost 17 years ago in 1997. Since then he has broken his own record again, just a month later in October of 1997.

Andy Green

Andy Green

Andy still isn’t satisfied. He has set out on a course to try and achieve a new world record of 1000 miles per hour, traveled in a vehicle on land. Andy will be setting out on this record attempt in 2015 and 2016 in the South African Desert, thanks to a project known as Bloodhound. The mission statement for the Bloodhound project reads as follows:

“Create a unique, high-technology project, focused around a 1000 mph World Land Speed Record attempt. Share this Engineering Adventure with a global audience and inspire the next generation by bringing science, technology, engineering and mathematics to life in the most exciting way possible.”

The 3D Printed Titanium Steering Wheel

The 3D Printed Titanium Steering Wheel

The vehicle is expected to be able to accelerate from 0 to 1,000 mph within just 55 seconds, a speed which will exceed that of a speeding bullet fired from a Magnum 357. It will weigh approximately 17,165 pounds, and is 44 feet in length.

In order to drive at such incredible and dangerous speeds, where one small issue with the vehicle’s design could mean the difference between life and death for the driver, Andy and his team at Bloodhound are working with some of the most sophisticated manufacturing technologies on the market today. The Cockpit of the Bloodhound is tailored specificially towards driver Andy Green.

blood-3

The steering wheel has been 3D printed out of a powdered titanium, custom fitted to the hands of Green. Any slight slip of his hands could end disasterously, therefore 3D printing was the perfect method of customization.  It is also a zero waste steering wheel, just like most other 3D printed parts which have been created with laser sintering technology. The wheel has the control buttons for the parachutes, the air brakes and also the rocket, with the two trigger switches built in.  It likely is the single most important part of the vehicle.

Below you will find a video with driver Andy Green discussing the various details of the tiny, yet extremely efficient cockpit of what he hopes will be a record breaking vehicle. Do you think Andy and his team at Bloodhound can succeed in surpassing the current land speed record by a staggering 237 miles per hour? Let us know in the Bloodhound forum thread at 3DPB.com.

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