Jet set: AgentJayZ explains it all

We take the jet engine for granted but the invention by Whittle and von Ohain will dazzle anyone who takes the time to burrow into the details. It’s simple on the surface – Intake, compress, combust, and exhaust(*) – but immensely complex and even beautiful in practice. Enter AgentJayZ, a Canadian engine repair technician for S&S Turbine Services, a company that repairs, restores, and/or refurbishes jets for military and civilian customers. This involves a lot of detail work followed by testing which the Agent documents gleefully on his Youtube channel. Yes, there are people who get to light afterburners without ever leaving the ground.

Even more impressive is his growing collection of answers to viewer questions. 86 lengthy episodes as of this post where he explains fine points of engine-ering with equal parts fact, humor, and snark.

My question? What is it like to love your job that much?

(*) A much coarser summation exists.

7 comments

  1. Dear AgentJayZ
    I am a newcomer to your “turbine explain videos” and I fliped through your videos looking if you ever answered a question about the clicking noise, which aircraft engines made on the airport, waiting for the passengers to enter. I am sorry, if you have ever answered this question; if so, please let me know the question number. If not, I would like you to explain a bit about the reasor for this noise, when the engines are on turning gear at this state. I am guessing that this noise is somehow related to the state of materials at cold temperatures, which extend at hot temperatures? Can one find these noise at stationary gas turbines as well?
    Thank you for answer in advance, dear AgentJayZ. Lots of greetings from Berlin, Germany.
    Torsten

    1. Hello – I am not AgentJayz, just an admirer of his videos. You would have to contact him through his Youtube channel. Sorry for any confusion.

    2. No AGENT JAYZ so I’ll try to help.
      The clicking noise you hear is from the blades moving in their fir-tree slots as the engine rotates slowly. It stops as the engine runs up to speed. The base of each blade has a fir tree shape machined into it that mates to corresponding channels machined in the hub. They are not a tight fit and can move slightly in the slots when the engine is rotating at very low speeds. This makes the characteristic ‘tinkling noise’ you hear. When the engine is running, the blades exert centrfugal force that seats them firmly into the slots in the hub. The reason for this design is to cope with thermal expansion and contraction encountered during the operation of the engine.

  2. dear jay.. when are they ..meaning the engine makers going to use ceramic bearings .. they work very well on model jet engines so why not use them on the big ones they need very little lubrication and wont wear out
    yours very sincerely james Laurence smith..

  3. No AGENT JAYZ so I’ll try to help.
    The clicking noise you hear is from the blades moving in their fir-tree slots as the engine rotates slowly. It stops as the engine runs up to speed. The base of each blade has a fir tree shape machined into it that mates to corresponding channels machined in the hub. They are not a tight fit and can move slightly in the slots when the engine is rotating at very low speeds. This makes the characteristic ‘tinkling noise’ you hear. When the engine is running, the blades exert centrfugal force that seats them firmly into the slots in the hub. The reason for this design is to cope with thermal expansion and contraction encountered during the operation of the engine. Also, as AB suggested, Gas turbine engines generally use spark ignition systems that make a sharp ‘tick tick tick’ type of sound when the engine starts up. Once running, igniters are not needed to sustain the combustion. So, Tinkling and ticking…. they are different sounds for different reasons.

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