Sunday, August 30, 2015

Book Review: Gas Turbine Theory

H. Cohen, G.F.C. Rogers and H.I.H. Saravanamuttoo
Gas Turbine Theory
Harlow, UK: Longman Scientific & Technical, 1987
Category: Aerospace Engineering

Rating: 4-Stars

The first edition of Gas Turbine Theory was originally published in 1951.  Updated many times over in the years since, the third edition first came out in 1987, and has had several printings since then.  The longevity of this title speaks to its role in fulfilling a fundamental need.

The text provides a good introduction into the theoretical foundations for the Brayton Cycle, which underlies all of jet propulsion.  It also provides an introduction into the components of turbomachinery - including such fundamentals, for example, as the calculation of entry and exit angles, and velocities across successive airfoil stages.

Where this book falls short is in its practical application.  Gas Turbine Theory is - as it claims - an introduction into the theory behind jet propulsion.  Aircraft Engine Design, on the other hand, is an introduction into the practicalities of conceptual engine design, engine sizing, and trade assessments.  For those wishing to touch on the theory of jet engines with broad brush strokes, Gas Turbine Theory is therefore a more than adequate text.  For those wishing to understand how the engine components and design process comes together into a functional engine, Aircraft Engine Design is by far the more valuable tool.  Perhaps it's a question of taste, but as an engineer, I have found the real satisfaction to be in the practical application and design process - not the theory.

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