Aeroplane Engines in Theory and Practice by John Rathburn


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This is a high quality facsimile of Aeroplane Engines in Theory and Practice by John B. Rathburn, originally published in 1921.

It is the purpose of this book to enter into the distinctive features of the internal combustion engines used in flight, their construction and the peculiar demands made upon them by flight conditions. These engines are not necessarily confined to use on the aeroplane but are engines equally adapted for use on dirigibles or for other flight apparatus that may be developed in the future. All of the engines described have seen actual service, and by far the greater number of them are what may be described as “Standard” constructions.

While the basic principles of the automobile and aeronautic motor are identical, there are very many constructional differences that require individual treatment, and a book dealing exclusively with automobile engines is not in the least of value as a reference work on aeroplane engines. The working conditions of the two engines are entirely different, in fact the requirements of the aeronautic engine more nearly approach those of the marine engine that an automobile engine. The question of weight has again divided aeronautic engines into various sub classes which have no equivalent in either marine or automobile service, the radial and rotary types being prominent examples.

The Author has endeavored to take up the construction and design of the engine in the simplest possible manner, and where necessary for a full understanding of the matter, has used elementary mathematics that can be easily understood by the layman. Nothing has been sacrificed, even from a theoretical standpoint by this simple treatment, and the reader will be enabled to make calculations for power and mean effective pressure without difficulty.

Both American and European engines are covered in detail. Diagrams, illustrations, and line drawings accompany every example for ease of understanding.

  1. The Aeroplane Engine
  2. Gasoline Engine Principles
  3. Aeronautic Engine Requirements
  4. Constructional Details
  5. American Aeronautic Engines
  6. The Liberty Engine
  7. Fuels and Combustion
  8. Power, Compression, Calculations
  9. Rotary Cylinder and Radial Engines
  10. European Fixed Cylinder Engines
  11. Carburetion and Carbureters


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