Snecma M53

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Moteur M53-P2.JPG
Type Turbofan
National origin France
Manufacturer Snecma
Major applications Dassault Mirage 2000

The SNECMA M53 is an afterburning turbofan engine developed for the Dassault Mirage 2000 fighter by Snecma. The engine is in service with different air forces, including the latest Mirage 2000-5 and 2000-9 multirole fighters.

Design and development[edit]

Nozale of an M53 installed in a Mirage 2000B

Although an entirely new design, the M53 is very similar in concept with the previous family of SNECMA military engines, the ATAR 9C and 9K, in that it has a single shaft driving both the fan and the high pressure compressor. Although this made it rather “dated” in comparison to other engines of the same generation, this gave the M53 some very desirable traits for a military engine. It allows for carefree operation, whereas a two-spool engine of the same generation required much more care during its operation; this is ironic in that 2-spool turbofans were originally invented to avoid the problems that single stage fans encountered during abrupt throttle movements. When one compressor section stalls on a single-spool fan, it directly effects the entire spool. When one compressor stalls in a 2-spool type, the remaining compressor and turbine continue to function independently, maintaining partial thrust and making it easier to get the stalled compressor working again, without relying on "windmilling" to ensure the engine will start. The M53's maintenance is vastly simplified, being of modular construction (subassemblies or modules do not require calibration when exchanged), and engine parts are changed “on condition”, that is, they do not expire after a given amount of hours of operation or time since installed, but rather on the general condition of the part or subassembly at the moment of inspection, which cuts down on maintenance costs. It is a simple engine in general, having no variable stators and less moving parts, it is reliable and pilot friendly, free of operational restrictions (extremely important in combat). However, it is the only known single-spool turbofan extant as of 2013, and its manufacturer transitioned to a more "conventional" two-spool design in subsequent engines, such as the Snecma M88.


  • M53-5 - powered initial Mirage 2000C models [1]
    • Dry thrust: 54.0 kN (5,500 kgp / 12,230 lbf)
    • Afterburning thrust: 86.3 kN (8,800 kgp / 19,400 lbf)
  • M53-P2 - powered later Mirage 2000C models and used to upgrade earlier models [2]
    • Dry thrust: 64.7 kN (6,600 kgp / 14,500 lbf)
    • Afterburning thrust: 95.1 kN (9,700 kgp / 21,400 lbf)


Specifications (M53-P2)[edit]

General characteristics

  • Type: Afterburning single-shaft turbofan
  • Length: 5,070 mm (199.60 in)
  • Diameter: 796 mm (31.33 in) inlet
  • Dry weight: 1,515 kg (3,340 lb)


  • Compressor: 8-stage axial compressor
  • Combustors: annular
  • Turbine: 2-stage axial turbine


See also[edit]

Related lists


External links[edit]