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Application Note

The Fastest Sensors on Four Wheels: Feeling the Force

The fastest sensors on four wheels: feeling the force

Hurtling across the desert Alkali plate at 1000mph in a 7.5 tonne car will undoubtedly cause extreme force and stress. The suspension alone will face 30 tonnes of weight. Bloodhound has designed the aluminium wheels to sit within the crust, formed over the top of the desert mud. If the car experiences too much down force, pressure is put on the crust below, resulting in the car breaking through the crust to the softer mud below. If this was to happen more drag would be generated, slowing down the supersonic car. In order to reduce the likelihood of this occurring, 25mm position sensors will play a key part in measuring the movement of the suspension and how much the car is pushing down on the wheels. The data from the sensors will notify the engineers if too much force is being put on the plate below.

The supersonic car is equipped with front and rear winglets to help adjust the down-force created by the car. Two Gill 360 Rotary Sensors are installed onto each of the front and rear winglets to monitor the winglet angle relative to the car body. The rotary sensor will provide positional data to notify when the winglets need to be adjusted in order to maintain stability and adjust the force created by the car during its runs.

All of the sensors installed within Bloodhound SSC need to endure the excessive temperatures and the dry and dusty environment generated by the South African lake bed. Gill sensors are among the best on the market. “The non-moving part aspect of the sensors means we can fit the sensors without worrying about the dust ingress getting into the moving part” says Kevin. “The sensors are critically important to the safety of the car and ensuring it is operating correctly.”

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Gill capacitive liquid level and inductive position sensors are designed for challenging environments such as the Bloodhound Project. Even in extreme applications the sensors are able to provide reassurance of optimum accuracy and unmatched reliability.


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