Volcano ash test stand

Interaction with engine components

When the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull erupted in 2010 and its ash cloud signifcantly obstructed air transport in Europe, it became clear that extensive in-depth research is required to gain a precise understanding of the mechanisms at play when ash enters an aircraft engine – as realistically as possible. A test rig has been available since 2015 to conduct these types of investigations and to accurately simulate the effects of volcanic ash on aircraft engines. The test rig was developed and built in a collaborative research project conducted by DLR, the Laboratory for Environmental Measurement Techniques at the Düsseldorf University of Applied Sciences, and the company Hammer Engines GmbH.

To conduct the tests, the researchers mix volcanic ash with air and let this mixture be sucked into a miniature turbine. Molten volcanic particles can be identifed in the exhaust stream exiting the turbine, confrming that the test rig is able to replicate the reaction between the components and volcanic ash in flight operations. This allows the DLR scientists to analyse precisely how the size, concentration and composition of volcanic ash particles affect the adhesive mechanisms. The experiments provide information on the interactions with the engine components and on which chemical reactions take place during operation. This enables the researchers to understand exactly how the damage is caused in the jet engine. They intend to use the findings to produce better assessments of the critical levels of volcanic ash concentration in the air, how much damage aircraft engines can take and how this will reduce their service life.

German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Jörg Brien · E-Mail: joerg.brien@dlr.de · DLR.de/en

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoreet dolore magna aliquam erat volutpat. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam.  Quis nostrud exerci tation ullamcorper suscipit lobortis nisl ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis autem vel eum iriure dolor in hendrerit in vulputate velit esse molestie consequat, vel illum dolore eu feugiat nulla facilisis at vero eros et accumsan et iusto odio dignissim qui blandit praesent luptatum zzril delenit augue duis te feugait nulla facilisi.

Ich bin ein Textblock. Klicken Sie auf den Bearbeiten Button um diesen Text zu ändern. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.

Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR)
Barbara Milow · E-Mail barbara.milow@dlr.de

Kometen: Die Mission Rosetta