Super Constellation, Engine Exhaust Flames

Flying over Sydney, Australia, this Lockheed L-1049 Super Constellation airplane is a beauty to fly. The licks of flame coming from the engines are the result of the R-3350 radial engine design incorporating “power recovery turbines”. This system increased the horsepower of the engines through a turbocharger like device on the exhaust manifold. The turbocharger shafts were linked to the main propeller crankshaft via a coupling to help provide additional power. This arrangement added an additional 550+ hp for take-off and assisted with cruise. The added power was enough to propel the Super Constellation, but one “drawback” was the flaming exhaust.