Turbojet Engine

Generation 1 (prototype)



How it works
This is a working turbojet engine that I built with my friend Stewart. It uses a diesel truck turbocharger as the core of the engine. The engine is fired by propane, which is burned inside a steel combustion chamber. The hot combustion gases exit this chamber and turn the turbine portion of the turbocharger, which in turn causes the compressor portion of the turbocharger to supply fresh air to the combustion chamber. This process accelerates and creates a high pressure combustion process that makes energy in the form of hot gases exiting the exhaust of the turbocharger. These hot gases create thrust. The engine is started using an electric leaf blower that spins the turbocharger up to speed in order to provide combustion air. The support systems used to run the engine consist of:

Ignition system
This is a high voltage transformer that creates a spark to ignite the propane during startup. Currently, an oil burner ignition system is being used to ignite the propane.

Lubrication system
The turbocharger needs lubrication which is provided by an oil pump, tank, filter, and cooler, along with a pressure regulator and gauge. The oil pump is made from an automotive power steering pump connected to a 110 volt table saw motor. The tank is made of PVC pipe and holds 2 quarts of oil. The filter is a high capacity inline autmotive fuel filter. We are currently using Mobil 1 0W-30 synthetic oil, at a working pressure of 35 PSI.

Fuel delivery system
Propane is metered and injected into the combustion chamber. The propane is regulated by a welding type regulator mounted on top of a 20 lb propane tank. It is then piped to the combustion chamber where it is injected with a homemade nozzle.

Future improvements will include an electronic engine management system, a nozzle to direct exhaust gases, and self-sustaining operation (no 120V power needed for oil system). An kerosene afterburner may also be incorporated into the exhaust gas nozzle.

Pictures 1

Pictures 2

Pictures 3

Diagram of operation

Temperature data spreadsheet

Videos (windows media format):


Turbo spoolup

Running and shutdown

Older turbo spoolup