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Power vs Thrust

  • Jubteter@gmail.com
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Jubteter@gmail.com created the topic: Power vs Thrust

Thrust and Power are they related or totally different?
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  • John.Heddles
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John.Heddles replied the topic: Power vs Thrust

Thrust and Power are they related or totally different?

Thrust and power are fairly closely related but definitely not the same animal.

Thrust is an example of a force and forces are those things which will cause accelerations or decelerations to items (objects, or stuff) which have mass (we can think of mass as weight - not strictly correct - but without getting too far from the idea).

Work is a measure of the energy applied to (or removed from) stuff when we move it (ie apply a force to it). At a very simple level, this is equivalent to force x distance (distance being the displacement over which the object (stuff) moves).

Power usually is thought of in terms of the rate (ie time related) at which work is done, A little bit of playing with the mathematics and this comes down to force x velocity. So, in effect, force is a material component of power and you will see this with your principles of flight studies when you look at drag and thrust curves and how they relate to aircraft motion.

We need thrust for an aircraft to make it move, change speed, height, and similar sorts of things, so it is an important concept in aircraft flight mechanics. We can think in terms of "spending" some power to obtain thrust, which then is useful to us in achieving what we might want to do with the aircraft's motion.

I suggest that you don't try to delve too much deeper, lest you get a tad confused with the physics. As a pilot, you don't really need to have a much deeper understanding than the above description.

On the other hand, if you want to get into the nitty gritty of things, by all means grab a couple of physics or mechanics textbooks and read away to your heart's content. However, for your flying training that would be, very much, an optional extra.

Engineering specialist in aircraft performance and weight control.
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