While keeping the typical cruise speed of 0.8 Mach, will the engine shut down due to "air starvation" at such high altitude? Is it possible to design a turbofan engine, which is able to provide thrust, similar to typical engines at lower altitude, with this given speed of 0.8 Mach?

  • $\begingroup$ This is a very vague and broad question with no specific answer. Clearly though, we have air-breathing engines that function at ~80,000 ft, e.g the U-2. $\endgroup$
    – zymhan
    Oct 30 '18 at 15:18
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    $\begingroup$ @zymhan but it was not using a high-bypass engine as the question requires. $\endgroup$
    – Federico
    Oct 30 '18 at 15:26
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    $\begingroup$ I see two questions here: "what will happen if we take a turbofan to 80,000 feet", and "is it possible to design a turbofan to function at 80,000 feet". If my understanding is wrong, you may want to edit to clarify. If you do want to ask two questions I'd suggest asking them separately, since they are fairly different. $\endgroup$
    – kevin
    Oct 30 '18 at 15:47
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    $\begingroup$ @kevin I addressed both in my answer. $\endgroup$
    – M28
    Oct 30 '18 at 18:35
  • $\begingroup$ At that altitude high bypass turbofan doesn't make much sense anymore. To make then engine run at all, you really want to use all the turbine's power to drive as big of a compressor as possible and don't have any power left to drive a fan to generate meaningful amount of thrust out of such thin air. $\endgroup$ Oct 31 '18 at 1:39

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