A peek inside a turbofan engine

Transparent core casing reveals the components that direct airflow within a jet engine.

A modern jet engine is an incredibly complex piece of engineering involving thousands of individual components. For aerodynamic reasons almost all these parts are hidden from view within a nacelle. To communicate this complexity, these look development images attempt to portray some of the amazing precision engineering hidden inside.

While there are no specific teaching points here, the aim is to convey the idea that there are a vast number of parts involved in the operation of a turbofan engine and to introduce the idea that many interconnected systems have the potential to go wrong during operation.

In this instance, transparent sections of casing reveal the inner workings, rather than a more traditional cutaway approach often seen in teaching material.

A view inside the core of a turbofan engine.

Most of today's commercial airliners are powered by turbofans. A high bypass turbofan engine has a large fan at the front, which draws in air. The majority of this air passes around the outside of the engine core.

Some of the incoming air passes through the fan and into the compressor stages, from there it enters the combustion chamber where it is mixed with fuel and ignited. The hot exhaust rapidly exits the core and then out the hot gas nozzle at the rear.

Details beneath the surface of a turbofan's engine casing.

This model is based on the CFM International LEAP-1A engine, which powers the new-generation Airbus A320neo single-aisle aircraft. Introduced in 2016, the design claims a 15% reduction in fuel consumption over previous models and up to 50% reduction in NOx emissions. It is currently in use by over 100 operators worldwide.