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The ThrustSSC: Fastest Car in the World

Posted in Bizarre, Car Stunts, Custom, Fast Cars, Gas Guzzlers, History, Racing, Supercars, Videos by Vito Rispo | September 3rd, 2008 | 5 Responses |

Sometimes I curse the human mind. We have to worry about all sorts of ridiculous nonsense. Why can’t we be like the lilies of the field? Consider the lilies, right? They toil not, neither do they spin. Isn’t that how it goes? Well either way, that’s usually how I’d like to be, without a care, toiling not. Then I see something like the ThrustSSC. It helps me see the beauty in human ingenuity.

There is no earthly reason to want to break the sound barrier in a car. There’s simply no earthly reason to see a gigantic jet engine and say “You know what, two of those would look really nice on my car”. It’s just that weird human instinct to want to break records and go fast. It’s awesome.

On October 15, 1997, the ThrustSSC set the current land speed record (and broke the sound barrier) when it hit a top speed of 763 mph. In the first 16 seconds of its run, it accelerated to 600 mph. Zero to 600 in 16 seconds.

How’s it do it? Well it’s powered by two afterburning Rolls-Royce Spey turbofan engines, usually used in jet fighters. It is 54ft long, 12ft wide and weighs 10.5 tons. The twin engines developed a thrust of 50,000 lbf and burned almost 5 gallons of fuel a second. That means it gets .04 mpg. I like it.

You may have heard the term afterburners before and not know exactly what they are or what they do. Essentially, afterburners massively increase thrust by injecting fuel into the turbine exhaust, so an afterburner is basically just like an exhaust pipe with some fuel injectors in it. The gases coming out of the turbine are hot enough to ignite the fuel.

Check out the ThrstSSC homepage
And videos of the actual record breaking run in 97:

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5 Responses

  1. “Ah, but a man’s reach must exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?” – Robert Browning, poet in Andrea del Sorto, line 98.

    This quote was on a 45 rpm vinyl record I had, as a child, commerating the first flights of the original Mercury astronauts. The sentiment applies to all those who pioneer to break new ground, new records, achieve new heights, in fast machines.

  2. The quote from Browning was on the record sleeve – paper they used to put on records to protect them – and commemorating (not commerating – spelling incorrect) the first flights of the original Mercury astronauts. For further information, either read The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe, or watch the movie, The Right Stuff, made back in 1984, but surely on a disc now.

  3. Joe says:

    Sweet videos. That is just crazy. Now if they could just build a perfectly flat straight road from east to west coast we’d be fine. lol.

  4. alyssa says:

    ilove this video u can learn about everything man wish i could ride it too jk