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Ohio State Engineering Student Team Shatters Landspeed Record for a Fuel Cell Car, 302.87mph

Ohio State

Ohio State

For the second time this week, Ohio State’s Buckeye Bullet 2 team has exceeded the international speed record it set in 2007.

Late yesterday (9/25), the Bullet set an average speed of 302.877 mph, which is pending certification by the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile before it can be called an official record.

The hydrogen fuel cell powered landspeed streamliner racer and its engineering student team made the record attempts in the Salt Flats in Utah this week. On Wednesday, the Bullet reached an average 299.91 mph, far surpassing the certified record of 132.129 mph the vehicle set in 2007.

The Bullet was required to make two speed runs, one each in opposite directions and within 60 minutes, in order to be considered for the record, which is officially determined by averaging the speed of the two runs.

This latest record represents several firsts for the Ohio team:

Major Milestones:

  1. First hydrogen-powered vehicle over 300 mph (whether combustion or fuel cell powered)
  2. More than doubling the current FIA records (see above)
  3. Besting the FIA international record for battery cars (which stands at 245.952 mph in a flying kilometer). This makes it the fastest FIA electric record. (NOTE: The fastest electric car on record is the Buckeye Bullet 1, which holds a national record at 314.958 mph and fastest recorded speed at 321.834 mph)

Screenshot_mid-run_sidebarThe students overcame several obstacles on the way to today’s highest speedometer reading, said Giorgio Rizzoni, director of Ohio State’s Center for Automotive Research and adviser to the team.

“The skill level, ingenuity and resilience of this student group is unparalleled,” he said. “Just last night they had a broken gearshift. They worked overnight to take the whole thing apart, and here they are now surpassing the 300 mph mark. It’s just phenomenal.”

“This record will hold for a long time,” Rizzoni said. “I can’t see who is going to take this away from us.”


Basic Information about the Buckeye Bullet 2:

  • The Buckeye Bullet 2 is designed and built by Ohio State University students, in the College of Engineering, out of the Center for Automotive Research in Columbus, Ohio.
  • Hydrogen Fuel Fuel Cell Electric Power (Fuel Cell Technology is Ballard PEM)
  • Over 700 horsepower of electric power produced onboard
  • Runs on compressed gaseous hydrogen (stored at 5,000 psi). Oxygen is carried onboard (mixed with 60% Helium for safety) for aerodynamic purposes. Only uses equivalent of one gallon of gasoline to make a single high-speed run.
  • Vehicle is 36 feet long, 40 inches wide
  • 2 parachutes used to slow down and stop. Aircraft brakes (same as a corporate jet would use) integrated for safety.

The vehicle, engineered by Ohio State students, is driven by professional racing driver Roger Schroer

Source:  Ohio State University

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