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Direct To: What You Didn't Know About Maneuvering Speed



You probably learned that when you fly below designed maneuvering speed, or Va, you'll stall before your airplane structurally fails. But that's not always the case. Find out why...

The Story For Podcast #4

Most pilots, like us, were taught that Va protects your plane from structural failure in flight. But in reality, that's not always the case. An example of this is American Airlines Flight 587, an Airbus A300 that broke apart in flight, while flying below Va the entire time.

So what does Va protect, and what doesn't it? Listen in and find out.

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NTSB Findings On American Airlines Flight 587

Read the NTSB's full report here.

The FAA Special Airworthiness Bulletin on Va


The Va Formula

Va @ Max Gross x √ (Aircraft Weight / Aircraft Max Gross Weight)

Special Thanks To

Title Music: Broke For Free (
Credits Music: Birocratic (


Aleks Udris

Aleks is a Boldmethod co-founder and technical director. He's worked in safety and operations in the airline industry, and was a flight instructor and course manager for the University of North Dakota. You can reach him at

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