Diagram of a typical gas turbine jet engine
is an airbreathing jet engine
, typically used in aircraft. It consists of a gas turbine
with a propelling nozzle
. The gas turbine has an air inlet, a compressor, a combustion chamber, and a turbine
(that drives the compressor). The compressed air from the compressor is heated by the fuel in the combustion chamber and then allowed to expand through the turbine. The turbine exhaust is then expanded in the propelling nozzle where it is accelerated to high speed to provide thrust. Two engineers, Frank Whittle
in the United Kingdom
and Hans von Ohain
, developed the concept independently into practical engines during the late 1930s.
While the turbojet was the first form of gas turbine powerplant for aviation, it has largely been replaced in use by other developments of the original concept. In operation, turbojets typically generate thrust by accelerating a relatively small amount of air to very high (supersonic) speeds, whereas turbofans accelerate a larger amount of air to transonic speeds. Turbojets have been replaced in slower aircraft by turboprops
because they have better specific fuel consumption
. At medium speeds, where the propeller is no longer efficient, turboprops have been replaced by turbofans
. The turbofan is quieter and has better range-specific fuel consumption than the turbojet. Turbojets can be highly efficient for supersonic aircraft. Read more...