Lasers to aid jet engine emissions reduction

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Tomographic imaging lasers for jet engine combustion analysis are to be investigated as part of a four-year £2.7 million study funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

Called Fibre-Laser Imaging of gas Turbine Exhaust Species (FLITES) the study is led by the University of Manchester and involves the University of Strathclyde, Rolls-Royce, Shell, photonics company Covesion, fibre laser specialist Fianium, opto-electronic firm OptoSci and the University of Southampton’s Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC).

‘With the increasing interest for substitution of fossil fuels with bio-fuels in the aviation industry, this is particularly important,’ the ORC’s professor Johan Nilsson said ‘FLITES will allow us to map different chemical species and soot in the exhaust plume of aero engines.’

This development in exhaust plume chemistry analysis will aid work to understand what the new bio-fuels will mean for jet engine combustion and emissions. The development of these imaging lasers could also help reduce the cost of engine evaluation and monitoring.