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Minimum Controllable Airspeed

Lesson Objective

The student will learn how to fly the glider on the cusp of a stall -- without allowing the glider to actually stall. If performed correctly, the glider will show many or all of the six signs of a stall. Also, the student will be expected to perform shallow-banked turns while flying in Minimum Controllable Airspeed (MCA).

Regulatory Requirement


  • Performance of the glider at MCA in level flight.
  • Performance of the glider at MCA during turns.
  • Performance of the glider at MCA without causing the aircraft to stall.
  • Performance of the glider at MCA while showing the six signs of a stall (without stalling).

Completion Standards

The student must be able to perform

  • Appropriate clearing turns before the maneuver
  • MCA in level flight
  • MCA in turns.

Prerequisite Study

  • Glider Flying Handbook, page 7-27, "Signs of an impending stall will include..."
  • Learning to Fly Gliders, page 25
  • Glider Flying Handbook, page 7-26


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