Hatfield rocket car gets Bang Goes the Theory treatment

A ROCKET-POWERED car, built by University of Hertfordshire students, was taken for its first spin by a TV presenter.

BBC’s Bang Goes the Theory star Dallas Campbell took to the wheel of the modified Vauxhall VX220 sports car for a speed-test at Duxford Aerodrome.

It was due to be shown as part of a feature on the Bloodhound 1,000 miles per hour car, currently being built for an attempt on the land-speed record, but was cut from the episode’s footgage.

Nevertheless, shoppers got the chance to see the vehicle up-close-and-personal as it went on show at Sainsbury’s, in London Colney.

Built in less than six weeks, the car is the first rocket-powered vehicle to be built by final-year aerospace students as part of their studies and has a thrust of around 600kg.

It proved during the test that it could go from 0-60 mph within three seconds.

The university’s experts have yet to fully test the car themselves and so its full capabilities are, as yet, unknown.

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Ray Wilkinson, principal lecturer in aerospace at the Hatfield uni, said: “This is an incredible and exciting achievement for our students, and highlights the practical work happening at the University of Hertfordshire that gives our students the hands-on experience they need to progress into their chosen careers.

“It was a real honour to have Dallas Campbell film with our car.

“Hopefully it will encourage more young people to study and consider careers in science, technology, engineering and maths.”

For additional video footage of the day and the build of the car or for more information about rocketry at the University of Hertfordshire, clicck on the link (top right).