Yes, many electrostatic generators use induction to store charge. Influence machines operate by electrostatic induction to convert mechanical work into electrostatic energy by using a small initial charge which is continually being replenished and reinforced. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrostatic_generator
Gas has not normally been used as a charge transporter because it does not easily carry free electrons. Air mixed with smoke has been tried in Van de Graff-like generators using the smoke particles to carry the charge instead of the latex rubber belt. Poor efficiencies resulted in the abandonment of this method.
Liquids have performed at higher efficiencies. In initial experiments on a liquid-filled generator, voltages up to 70 kV have been achieved. The liquid dielectric is pumped around a closed-loop system and acts both as a charge-transporting medium and an insulator. The charge is injected into the liquid from field-emitting electrodes. (Can’t locate the reference now...will try again.)
For theory of operation and how to build a frictional (HV) generator see: http://www.alaska.net/~natnkell/staticgen.htm
The National High Magnetic Field Laboratory has several interactive tutorials for electrostatic generators and associated apparatus:
Here is a long list of DIY electrostatic projects: http://amasci.com/static/electrostatic1.html
Will you please be more specific about what you propose to drive: "engine/turbine"?? Be advised, HV static generators do not produce significant amounts of power.