The Bloodhound SSC Project is a three-year quest to build a land speed record car that can reach 1,000mph.
But behind the bravado, the primary goal of the project is to inspire future generations to take up careers in science, technology, engineering and maths.
‘This is the sexiest story I’ll ever work on,’ said Mission 21 founder and director Richard Knight. ‘If the car doesn’t reach 1,050mph, but it reaches 20 million people, then it will still be a success.’
The project will share all its technology and research with the public.
Science and education specialist Mission 21 has been given a three-year account. It will make use of YouTube, Twitter and other social networking sites to keep a global audience up to date with every breakthrough, setback and achievement.
‘We talk about the future, about energy, water provision and shaping a low carbon world, but there are not enough people to design it. We need more to make these subjects look as exciting as possible,’ said Knight.
Mission hopes to emulate the profile of previous science projects including the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland and Apollo Programme.
The current land speed record is held by Andy Green, who reached 763mph in 1997 at the controls of ThrustSSC.
Green is also lined up to drive the new supersonic car, which will accelerate from 0-1,050 mph in 40 seconds.
At this speed, Green will cover a distance equivalent to more than four football pitches every second.
The project is being funded by five founding sponsors, and the Government is part-funding an education programme to run alongside the mission.