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Heinkel (von Ohain) HeS 3B Turbojet Engine, Reproduction


Display Status:

This object is on display in the Jet Aviation exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

Collection Item Summary:

Studies begun by Dr. Hans von Ohain in 1933 led to a propulsion process in which compression and expansion were separated and carried out by a turbo compressor and turbine respectively. A model jet engine only partially functioned correctly, indicating a need for systematic development effort with industrial support and funding, leading to his employment with the Heinkel Corporation.

Von Ohain's gaseous hydrogen-powered turbojet engine designated HeS 1 ran successfully in early 1937. The HeS 3B engine, which evolved in 1938, used internal fuel gasification initially rather than the desired atomized liquid fuel injection system used in later versions. On August 27, 1939, the HeS 3B powered the Heinkel He 178 on the world's first flight of a turbojet powered aircraft.

The German Engine Industry built this non-working reproduction under the leadership of the M.T.U. Co. at the request of the Deutsches Museum of Munich, Germany, from plans drawn by Dr. von Ohain.

Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum


Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum


Dr. Hans von Ohain

Credit Line

Gift of Motoren- und Turbinen-Union Company, Munich, Germany


Metal, Wood, Plexiglas


Length 128.9 cm (50.75 in.), Width 116.8 cm (46.0 in.), Height 106.0 cm (41.75 in.)

Country of Origin




Physical Description

  • Type: Turbojet, single-shaft,
  • Thrust: 4,412 N (992 lb) at 11,000 rpm
  • Compressor: Single-stage, axial- flow inducer, centrifugal-flow
  • Combustor: Gaseous annular reverse-flow
  • Turbine: Single-stage radial
  • Weight: 360 kg (794 lb)


PROPULSION-Turbines (Jet)

Inventory Number


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