How Fast Is Fast?

My Mazda Rx8 - 180 mph (but Iíve never tried it)

Indianapolis 500 Race Car - 237 mph (and they have tried it)

Land speed record - 766 mph (Oct. 15, 1997)

727 Passenger Jet - 600 mph

Concorde Supersonic Passenger Jet - 1,450 mph

Winchester .270 Rifle Bullet - 1,924 mph

Fastest jet (SR-71 Blackbird) - 2,193 mph

X-15 Rocket plane - 4,520 mph

The Space Shuttle - 17,500 mph

So how fast is 17,500 mph really? Try this experiment sometime while youíre on the thruway: Note the time and note where you are. For the next five minutes, watch and remember everything you pass. Keep in mind the whole distance and all the things youíve passed during that five minutes. At the end of the five minutes, imagine going past all that stuff within the time it takes you to say "one steam engine". Thatís how fast the shuttle goes.

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Your questions and comments regarding this page are welcome. You can e-mail Randy Culp for inquiries, suggestions, new ideas or just to chat.
Updated 8 September 2008