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Aviation Glossary :: Stall Speed  Aviation Glossary :: Stall Speed FAA Written Test Preparation
Aviation Glossary Welcome to the Dauntless Aviation Glossary!

At Dauntless, our editorial staff maintains the web's largest unified glossary of aviation terms. This glossary is built from a combination of official, quasi-official, and proprietary sources (including original material that we develop oursselves). Uniquely, we often provide multiple definitions of a given term so that you can find that which best applies to you. In order to maximize your learning efficiency, this glossary (and similar ones for our international users) is incresingly fully integrated into our aviation learning apps, including our FAA written test prep and FAA practical test prep software and apps. If you like this glossary, you'll love them with their polished learning environments and world's best and clearest content (please do give them a try.).

Stall Speed
Stall Speed
Stalls depend only on angle of attack, not airspeed. However, the slower an airplane goes, the more angle of attack it needs to produce lift equal to the aircraft's weight. As the speed slows further, at some point this angle will be equal to the critical (stall) angle of attack. This speed is called the "stall speed". An aircraft flying at its stall speed cannot climb, and an aircraft flying below its stall speed cannot stop descending. Any attempt to do so by increasing angle of attack, without first increasing airspeed, will result in a stall.

The actual stall speed will vary depending on the airplane's weight, altitude, configuration, and vertical and lateral acceleration. Guidelines for the case of zero acceleration are provided by the following V speeds:

  • VS: The computed stalling speed with flaps retracted at design speed. Often has the same value as S1.
  • VS0: The stall speed in landing configuration (full flaps, landing gear down, spoilers retracted).
  • VS1: The stall speed in a "clean" configuration (flaps, landing gear and spoilers all retracted as far as possible).
  • VSR: Reference stall speed.
  • VSR0: Reference stall speed in the landing configuration.
  • VSR1: Reference stall speed in the clean configuration.
  • VSW: Speed at which onset of natural or artificial stall warning occurs.
On an airspeed indicator, the bottom of the white arc indicates vS0 at maximum weight, while the bottom of the green arc indicates VS1 at maximum weight. While an aircraft's vS speed is computed by design, its vS0 and vS1 speeds must be demonstrated empirically by flight testing.
source: Wikitionary / Wikipedia and Related Sources (Edited)

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