V-speeds are standard terms used to define airspeeds important or useful to the operation of an aircraft and core knowledge required for the Performance module in ATPL Theoretical Knowledge.
Important airspeeds include, for example, the optimum speed for takeoff or the ‘never exceed’ speed, which is exactly what it says!
Each speed category is abbreviated to a two or three letter code, all beginning with ‘V’.
Why V? This is from the the French word vitesse, meaning “speed.”
V-speeds for each type of aircraft are decided on based on data obtained by aircraft designers and manufacturers during flight testing and verified by a national civil aviation authority during aircraft type-certification testing (i.e. the aircraft meets airworthiness requirements).
Using V-speeds is considered a best practice to maximise aviation safety and aircraft performance.
As part of the ‘Performance’ module of ATPL Theoretical Knowledge, you will be required to learn these abbreviations, their meanings and apply your knowledge of them.
We’ve pulled together a simple reference guide of all V-speeds you need to survive (and pass) this module.
ATPL: Performance: Take off V Speeds