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The Green Life: Greenbird Breaks Wind-Powered Land Speed Record

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March 30, 2009

Greenbird Breaks Wind-Powered Land Speed Record

After devoting 10 years to the project, British engineer Richard Jenkins smashed the land speed record for a wind-powered craft. Jenkins's vehicle, the Ecotricity Greenbird, clocked in at 126.1 mph on March 26. The previous record, held by Bob Schumacher, was 116 mph. "It's an incredibly difficult record to break," Jenkins said after the ride. "Any other record, more power means more speed. Here we don't have more power. More wind doesn't mean more speed. [You've] got to get it technically spot-on." The wind-craft's Web site calls the unique design "part aeroplane, part sailboat, part Formula One car."

The land speed competition takes place at Ivanpah Dry Lake, on the California-Nevada border. Greenbird's wild desert ride won't be it's last chance for glory: Jenkins and his team hope to break the ice speed record next winter.

--Della Watson

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