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When reading the specifications of a jet aircraft anywhere on the Internet, it usually states that its engine produces X pounds of "dry thrust".

Why is it called "Dry" Thrust? As opposed to what?

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Some information about afterburners: aviation.stackexchange.com/questions/17286/… – jklingler Feb 22 at 9:19
up vote 26 down vote accepted

Dry thrust usually means the non-augumented thrust i.e. thrust without the use of afterburners or liquid injection. The maximum thrust produced by jet engines w/o afterburner is sometimes called military thrust.

The thrust of a jet eingine can be increased by using methods like water(+methonol) injection (mostly in older turbojet engines) or by using afterburners (reheat). In such cases, the (higher) thrust produced is called wet thrust.

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Dry thrust refers to an afterburning engine running without afterburner. The figures you mention usually refer to the maximum thrust without afterburner.

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One interesting case of actually wet thrust, as opposed to afterburners, is the Harrier Jump Jet, which can inject water into its engines for up to 90 seconds to increase performance for vertical takeoff and landing without melting its turbine blades. The use of water in jet engines is interesting because it not only cools the turbine, but simultaneously adds thrust through the added mass and steam expansion.

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