Draftsmen in the Materials and Stresses Building at the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) Lewis Flight Propulsion Laboratory create a template for a compressor using actual compressor blades. The Compressor and Turbine Division contained four sections of researchers dedicated to creating better engine components. The Materials and Thermodynamics Division studied the strength, durability, heat transfer characteristics, and physical composition of various materials.
The two divisions were important to the research and development of new aircraft engines. The constant battle to increase the engine’s thrust while decreasing its overall weight resulted in additional stress on jet engine components, particularly compressors. As speed and maneuverability were enhanced, the strain on the engines and inlets grew. For decades NACA Lewis researchers continually sought to improve compressor blade design, develop stronger composite materials, and minimize flutter and inlet distortions.