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Posted by on Jan 21, 2016 in Tell Me Why |

How Do Jet Engines Work?

How Do Jet Engines Work?

You can make a simple jet engine by filling a balloon with air and letting it go. Jet engines work on the principle that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. When your balloon flies away, the “action” is the air rushing out of the opening, and the “reaction” is the forward flight of the balloon.

A jet engine gets its power from hot gases made when the jet fuel is mixed with air and burned. The hot gases expand and push out of the tailpipe. Because a push in one direction causes an equal push in the opposite direction, the jet plane is driven forward.

The way they’re designed allows aircraft to fly faster and further compared to propeller-driven aircraft. Their development and refinement over the course of the last 65 years has made commercial air travel more practical and profitable, opening the world to business and recreational travelers.

These days, jet engines are even more advanced than the basic turbine construction. Now they have huge fans in front, and instead of shooting the gas out of the back directly, it goes through a second turbine which powers the fan up front.

While older jet engines took a smaller amount of air and accelerated it a lot, newer jet engines take in more air and accelerate it a little. The result is that the engine uses much less energy.

Content for this question contributed by Christian Soukup, resident of Raynham, Bristol County, Massachusetts, USA