The wheels that will hopefully power the Bloodhound SSC car to speeds of over 1600km/h are now in production, with four of the finest aluminium alloy wheels being carved to extremely precise shape.
Scotland's Castle Engineering is heading up the wheel team and see the development of the car and its cutting edge bits as a showcase for the UK's engineering talent. The wheels have an international edge to them, though, with the metal sourced and initially forged in Germany, before the raw 200kg lumps were shipped over to be precision cut to shape to an accuracy of just a few thousandths of a millimetre.
Once cut, the wheels are balanced for extra accuracy, through a process that shaves even finer layers of the fancy alloy off the surface to ensure there's no unevenness that could introduce car-tearing wobbles when magnified by pushing them through the sound barrier.
Impact damage and loading are key to surviving an attempt on the 1600km/h mark, with the makers suggesting stones fired up from the front wheels when they're spinning at 10,500 rpm could hit the rears with the power of a bullet. Hence they're being cut from the finest, roundest, lumps of metal that can be found. [BBC]
This post originally appeared on Gizmodo UK, which is gobbling up the news in a different timezone.