how does a turbine engine work?

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  • Mikel
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    First, there are more than one configuration of turbine engine. Also, there are steam and gas turbines.

    With gas turbines, which I figure is what you are interested in, there is a shaft running the length of the rotating parts in the center of the engine. It has a series of fan wheels on it that suck in and compress the air (containing oxygen), thus called the compressor section. The air is then ducted to the combustion section where fuel is injected and burned. This can be in a 'basket' or annular configuration. The burning fuel caused heating of the air, which puts energy into it and it is ducted into a turbine wheel on the shaft which causes the shaft to turn the compressor wheels, generating more compressed air. After the exhaust gasses pass through the turbine stage, it is used to thrust or 'jet' the engine and whatever it is attatched to. There are other components like the gear driven accessory drive for fuel pump, oil pump, generator, etc., air bleeds, and more but that is the basics. And it applies to both centrifical as well as axial flow (most common) types. And there is a version of the 'fanned' engine where there is a second shaft (inside the main engine turbine engine shaft) that turns a huge diameter compressor fan stage (in front of the main engine compressor stage) and said shaft is driven by the jet of the exhaust of the main engine exhaust jet. It does a couple of things, increasing efficiency and especially, it 'envelopes' the loud exhaust noise common to original engine designs. That is why the size of the engines on 737s to 777s.

    Source(s): That's probably way more than you wanted to know, sorry, but you got me started. You dragged my work memories back out.
  • 1 decade ago

    A turbine has something like an airplane propeller inside it. When an airplane turns a propeller, it blows wind past the wings, pulling the airplane forward fast enough for the wings to lift it.

    The propeller in a turbine works the opposite way of an airplane propeller. Instead of blowing wind by turning, it turns by wind being blown through it.

    The wind that turns the propeller comes from burning fuel. The wind is basically the smoke from burning the fuel. The amount of smoke is so much that it can make enough wind to turn the propeller very fast. It's relatively clean smoke, so it doesn't look very smokey.

    When the propeller inside the turbine engine turns, it's connected to something outside which it turns. If it's a turbine engine of an airplane, the thing it turns outside the engine is the airplane propeller. If it's the turbine engine of a race car, the thing it turns is the wheels. Etc.

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