Photo credit: WebUrbanist
A jet engine is basically a reaction engine that discharges a fast moving jet which generates thrust by jet propulsion in accordance with Newton’s laws of motion. These typically consist of an engine with a rotary air compressor powered by a turbine, with the leftover power providing thrust via a propelling nozzle. Continue reading to see five crazy videos of homemade jet-powered vehicles.
5. RC Jet
Jet engines can be dated back to the invention of the aeolipile before the first century AD. This device used steam power directed through two nozzles to cause a sphere to spin rapidly on its axis. So far as is known, it was not used for supplying mechanical power, and the potential practical applications of this invention were not recognized. It was simply considered a curiosity.
Jet propulsion only took off, literally and figuratively, with the invention of the gunpowder-powered rocket by the Chinese in the 13th century as a type of fireworks, and gradually progressed to propel formidable weaponry. However, although very powerful, at reasonable flight speeds rockets are very inefficient and so jet propulsion technology stalled for hundreds of years.
The first patent for using a gas turbine to power an aircraft was filed in 1921 by Frenchman Maxime Guillaume. His engine was an axial-flow turbojet. Alan Arnold Griffith published An Aerodynamic Theory of Turbine Design in 1926 leading to experimental work at the RAE.
Jet engines have also been used to propel high speed cars, particularly drag racers, with the all-time record held by a rocket car. A turbofan powered car ThrustSSC currently holds the land speed record.
Jet engine designs are frequently modified for non-aircraft applications, as industrial gas turbines. These are used in electrical power generation, for powering water, natural gas, or oil pumps, and providing propulsion for ships and locomotives. Industrial gas turbines can create up to 50,000 shaft horsepower.