7 Things About Airplane Engines You Didn’t Know

Airplanes have revolutionized travel for the past century and have created a pathway for millions to experience life at its highest level. But, there is much more to airplanes than meets the eye. The aero-engine is located in all airplanes and comes in all different shapes, sizes, and capabilities that few people realize. Here, we’ll talk about seven airplane engine facts that you likely didn’t know. 


#1.The Cost of An Airplane Engine

Since most airplanes are fully equipped with engines when they are purchased, it’s hard to determine the cost of the engine alone. But, an engine can cost between $12-35 million. The price range is so wide because there are so many different types of jet engines and each has its own thrust rat-ing. Either way, airplane engines are no small expense.

#2. Heavy-Duty Turbines

Did you know that some power plants use 100-ton gas turbine engines fueled by natural gas in order to generate electricity? Residual heat is also used to boil water for a secondary steam turbine. Some studies have shown that emissions from natural gas and its combustion are much lower than those from coal or oil. 

#3. How Often do Engines Need to be Serviced?

Regular engine maintenance is essential to keep air travel safe after a set number of flight cycles, every engine is required to undergo maintenance, sometimes minor or significant, depending on the engine type. For example, the CF6-80E engine that is used to power KLM’s Airbus A330 requires significant maintenance every 7,300 cycles in addition to minor maintenance every 200-400 cycles.

#4. The World’s Biggest Aircraft Engine

You may be wondering what the biggest aircraft engine in the world is. General Electric’s GE90-115B engine definitely takes the cake! This engine has a diameter of 3.25 meters and generates 115,000 pounds of thrust. These engines are also used in KLM’s Boeing 777-300s, which is a lengthier version of the 777-200ER.

#5. How Does a Jet Engine Work?

A jet engine is comparable to a piston engine but it is more complicated. Both inner workings and components are extremely complex, and instead of using fuel burned to move pistons through a four-stroke cycle, constantly spinning turbine blades power the jet engine. A continual supply of fuel and air to burn is required to make the turbine blades spin.

#6. Airplane Engines Are Hot, Hot, Hot

You knew airplane engines were hot, but did you know they are one of the hottest parts of an airplane, reaching temperatures of up to 1,400 degrees Celsius (2,552 degrees Fahrenheit)? This is the area where compressed air is mixed with fuel and then ignited. The engine is “hot” with reciprocating fuel and hence the terminology hot start.

#7. Engines are Fully Disassembled When They Are Overhauled

The average jet engine is extremely complex and typically consists of about 40,000 parts. So, it’s no surprise that it can take up to 50-60 days to disassemble an engine. After a full overhaul, the jet engine will be as good as new and ready for thousands of more kilometers in the sky.

Though we already told you about the top seven interesting facts about airplane engines, we want-ed to include a few more of our favorite airplane facts:

  • Airplanes are built to withstand lightning strikes.
  • Some airplanes have secret bedrooms for the flight crew on overnight and long hauls.
  • You don’t need both airplane engines to fly. 
  • You know those white lines that airplanes leave behind in the sky? Those are condensation trails, or “contrails” for short.

Are you surprised by any of the facts? Have a cool one that we missed? Reach out and let us know. We look forward to hearing from you!

About AeroVision International LLC:   Founded in 2003, AeroVision International has become a trusted business partner to business and regional aircraft MR&O facilities and operators worldwide. AeroVision supplies business and regional commuter engines and engine parts (PT6 / PW100 / JT15D / PW300 / PW500 / TFE-731 / AE3007) in support of operators and MRO facilities around the world. With a strong focus on Embraer ERJ-135/145 and EMB120 aircraft, AeroVision offers sales & leasing of aircraft, engines, auxiliary power units, avionics and landing gear as well as outright or exchange sales of all major internal and external spare parts.