How to start the Whittle jet engine…
1. Hand pump oil to lubricate the bearings.
2. Open the throttles; there are two, one to open and one to control speed.
3. Switch on igniters to provide the initial spark to get combustion going.
4. Turn the starting handle (really!) to turn the compressor shaft and turbine blades, otherwise the starter motor would not be able to turn it alone.
5. Press start button… and stand well back.
Once it is going, the engine will continue to run for as long as fuel is supplied to it. There is just one moving part: the compressor/shaft and turbine blades. And to turn off? Switch off the igniter.
There’s a very good chance the Dyson car, due to be unveiled in 2021, will be rather easier to start and stop…
Photography by James Lynch