AS9120B, ISO 9001:2015, AND FAA AC 0056B ACCREDITED

How Does a Turbocharger Work?

Turbochargers are a pivotal component of many modern engines, playing a crucial role in enhancing engine performance and efficiency. They are commonly used in various applications, most notably being used for automotive engines and aircraft powerplants. 

A turbocharger, often referred to as a "turbo," is a device that forces more air into an engine's combustion chamber, which allows for more fuel to be burned for an increased power output. In simpler terms, it is like giving your engine a power boost without increasing its size. To comprehend how this is achieved, we need to look at the turbocharger system's core components: the compressor, the turbine, and the shaft that connects them.

The heart of a turbocharger system is the compressor. One can picture it as a small fan or impeller, usually located at the front of the turbocharger housing. Its primary function is to draw in and compress air, increasing its density before delivering it to the engine's intake manifold. This high-pressure, high-density air is then sent into the engine, where it mixes with fuel for combustion.

The turbine is essentially the exhaust-driven component of the turbocharger, located at the rear of the housing, right in the path of the exhaust pipe gasses exiting the engine after combustion. As the hot exhaust gasses flow through the assembly, they are directed toward the turbine blades. With exhaust gasses rapidly expanding and forcing their way through the engine, they cause the turbine blades to spin as energy is harnessed.

It is important to note that the turbine and compressor are connected by a shaft. So, as the turbine spins, it in turn drives the compressor, creating a continuous cycle of air intake and compression. This connection between the two components is what enables the turbocharger to function seamlessly.

While many are familiar with the turbochargers found in cars, such apparatuses are also a vital component in aircraft engines, especially those designed for high-altitude flight. As an aircraft ascends to higher altitudes, air pressure decreases, which can lead to a significant drop in engine performance. This is where a turbocharger becomes indispensable.

In an aircraft turbocharger system, the compressor and turbine work together to maintain a constant air pressure in the engine's intake manifold, regardless of the aircraft's altitude. This is achieved by adjusting the speed of the turbocharger in response to changing conditions. As the aircraft climbs, the turbocharger spins faster to ensure that the engine continues to receive the necessary amount of compressed air, maintaining an optimal power output.

With this basic understanding of the common components of a turbocharger and its distinct functions, one can better understand why turbochargers can be a pivotal tool for many aircraft and vehicles. Here on National Stock Number Parts, we offer customers access to a diverse set of turbocharger components, piston parts, compressor turbine items, and aviation product solutions that are sourced from leading manufacturers from across the globe. All that we offer is sold with highly competitive pricing and rapid lead times, and we have expedited shipping options to accommodate the time constraints of customers. To learn more about how we can effectively serve you and your needs, get in touch with one of our industry experts today; we are available around the clock and are always happy to assist customers as their strategic sourcing partner.


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