How Do Small Gas Turbines Work?


Quick Answer

Gas turbines use pressurized gas to make the turbines spin, which in turn spins an output shaft that creates power. Most gas turbines create their own source of pressurized gas by burning a substance such as propane, kerosene or jet fuel. The heat from the fire then expands the air inside the gas turbine that creates the pressure that causes the turbines to spin.

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Full Answer

To maximize the potential power input, the gas turbine uses compressed air that can expand even more than uncompressed air. This expanded compressed air moves through the blades of the turbine that then push the turbine to make it spin. The spinning turbine then causes the drive shaft to rotate.

The rotating drive shafts connect to a magnet mounted on a large rod. The drive shaft's rotation causes the rod to rotate as well, forcing the magnet to spin. The spinning magnet is surrounded by copper wires.

The interplay between the rotating magnet and copper wires creates a magnetic field that lines electrons up around the copper wires. The electrons then move through the copper wiring to create electricity. The turbine then filters this electricity from the copper wires and into a generator to create usable energy.

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