Originally recorded 2021.03.04
This is a recently revised presentation of the Daniel and Florence Guggenheim Memorial Lecture on Civil Propulsion; The Last 50 Years given in 2002.
This presentation covers propulsion development in the civil field over the last seven decades. It is notable that aircraft have displaced ships and railways for long distance passenger travel, and this could not have been achieved without the continuous development of the aircraft gas turbine.
The talk traces propulsion developments from the end of the piston era through the early turboprops and turbojets to the high bypass ratio turbofans to the latest advances in geared turbofan technology.
While the aircraft gas turbine has attained extremely high levels of safety, reliability and efficiency, the aviation sector is facing existential challenges today that will require resilience and innovation to solve.