The first thing you should know is that turbochargers, is that they were not widely used by people that were in the Hot Rodding world, back in the 1930’s and 1940’s, but they were starting to get a bit popular in the world of airplanes.
People during that time didn’t saw horsepower as just speed, horsepower was a weapon back in the day. Might sound a bit strange but its the truth, the horsepower that these planes used to generate would allow them to win the skies. So having horsepower was a must in the military vehicles. This old video that you are about to see was made by what was then the Army Air force, and it was made to educate the pilots and the mechanics about the new turbocharger system installed in the planes.
The turbocharger system allowed planes to fly at higher altitudes, and at faster speeds and have better performance, so in other words the new turbocharger system was crucial to be victorious in a battle. We might not call them turbochargers anymore, but back in the day any forced induction was referred as supercharging. GE who were in charge of the new system mounted on these planes, developed the turbos and placed them in front. Even though turbochargers had been around since 1905, they were put to use 20 years later because they had to be developed into viable pieces, so it could be fitted on diesel engines and other applications. GE first tested them on airplane engines, but they have been used on other power plants like the Liberty piston, where they mounted one in 1914 and ran it on top of Pikes Peak which is 14.000 ft above sea level, to measure the HP production. It made 400 hp on the ground and 410 hp above sea level with the turbo on it. This is one cool video, and we advise you to see it, because it shows a lot of cool actions and all kinds of things.