To operate satisfactorily in jet engines, fuels must satisfy certain minimum performance criteria embracing not only the obvious one of combustion, but also such aspects as thermal stability, flow at low temperatures, corrosivity, cleanliness, etc. To this end, internationally agreed specifications have been developed to ensure satisfactory fuel performance in all aviation gas turbines. This article concentrates on one such area, thermal stability, to illustrate some of the work performed on aviation kerosine at Shell's Thornton Research Centre in Cheshire. Here, for over forty years, realistic fuel system simulator rigs have been used to examine the influence of fuel properties and composition on various aspects of its performance. One conclusion of such work is that fuels possessing almost identical physical properties can, because of the presence of varying types and amounts of trace compounds, exhibit considerably different performance qualities.
Kendall, D., Clark, R. and Wolveridge, P. (1987), "Fuels for Jet Engines: The Importance of Thermal Stability", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 59 No. 12, pp. 2-7. https://doi.org/10.1108/eb036544Download as .RIS
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