Pylon and Jet Engine Installations

Jet Engine - General Electric GEnx on 747-8I prototype

Jet Engine mounts – that incredible wing!

There is much said about the Germans and English (esp. Frank Whittle) with regard to the jet engine but very little in line with the airframe and designs used in conjunction with turbine propulsion. Passenger and cargo aircraft with amazing power and lift hold most of us in awe and just short of being an aviation engineer to understand the dynamics involved the layman really has very little understanding of aircraft in general. I find the aircraft wing one of the most fascinating pieces of engineering yet we all know so little about it.


Picture the last time you took a flight and recall how the wings started to bounce while taxing along the runway.

As a layman an oft asked question is how the deuce are those massive engines mounted onto the wing or tail section of an aircraft?  If you have never asked yourself this simple question then possibly you have never flown before because well, a wing is just a piece of aviation strength aluminium isn’t it?  When you take an engine, actually 4 engines like in a Boeing 747 and mount them to two wings one would think that they would break off with all that weight. Each engine weighs upwards of 4 000Kg so it is totally amazing that it doesn’t. Or is it?  Look at the bird front on before a long haul and you’ll see that the wings do look they are hanging downwards. The wingspan on a 747 is approximately 60m in length and carries nearly 200 000 liters of fuel plus four ginormous jet engines so certainly it’s going to pull downwards. If you find this fascinating just look at the Antonov An-225 Mriya, the Russian juggernaut, said to be the longest, heaviest and with the greatest wingspan of around 80m (84m).

Jet Engine - General Electric GEnx on 747-8I prototype
General Electric GEnx on 747-8I prototype
Photo Credit source: Olivier Cleynen

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