14 February 2013

A radically new propulsion technology being developed in a jointly-funded EADS/Russian effort has demonstrated good results during the current phase of testing performed in Novosibirsk.

This innovative concept, called a continuous detonation wave engine (CDWE), offers a potential for significantly more efficient and capable propulsion systems for civil aircraft. When fitted to a conventional jet-engine, for example, the CDWE technology could transform overall engine performance and lead to a simplified engine design – providing a remarkable thermal efficiency improvement of around 25 percent.

The CDWE evaluations are carried out in a cooperative programme involving Siberia’s Lavrentiev Institute of Hydrodynamics with the EADS Innovation Works–Russia operation of EADS’ Corporate Technical Office, and is supported by a grant from the Russian Skolkovo Innovation Foundation.

Current testing includes evaluations of a CDWE combustion chamber, which were performed in a Novosibirsk test cell operated by the institute’s Heterogeneous Systems Dynamics Laboratory, are providing an initial demonstration of the concept’s feasibility. The project is benefitting from the extensive work performed in this area by the Institute over a period of 50 years, and is now complemented by EADS know-how and skills which will enable the project partners to translate the technology into successful applications.


A recent CDWE combustion chamber demonstration in Novosibirsk was attended by Richard Forster of EADS Innovation Works-Russia (in the center), along with Dr. Anatoliy Vasiliev, Director of the Lavrentiev Institute of Hydrodynamics (at right), and Prof. Sergey Zhdan, head of the Institute’s Heterogeneous Systems Dynamics Laboratory.