Last week’s poll: replicating the Bloodhound education effect

Last week saw Bloodhound SSC successfully undertake two high-speed test runs on the runway of Newquay Airport, a spectacle witnessed by around 4,000 spectators.

Bloodhound SSC project

The dynamic tests gave the Bloodhound team a chance to assess the performance of the vehicle’s steering, brakes, suspension, data systems and other functions. They also marked a key milestone in the team’s efforts to break and then shatter the world land speed record at Hakskeen Pan in South Africa in 2019.

The vehicle represents a remarkable feat of engineering and its outreach programme has reached 6,000 schools – 130,000 pupils per year – in Britain, leading us to ask if Bloodhound – as impressive as it is – is the right sort of project to enthuse the next generation of engineers.

Bloodhound SSC project

The visceral thrill of a 1,000mph land vehicle managed to vitalise just over a fifth (21%) of respondents who agreed that we need more of the same. This was followed by 30 per cent who thought a project with the goal of exploration would replicate the Bloodhound effect, and 39 per cent who saw a clean energy project as the best way to engage with young people. Of the remainder, only five per cent took the view that a project in the medical sector would work, and seven per cent chose none of the above.

A consensus emerged in the debate that followed, with many offering their alternatives to Bloodhound. Your thoughts on the subject are welcome in Comments below.  

Click here to read our coverage of the Bloodhound SSC project to date.