Attitude and Airspeed

Determining the airspeed, vertical speed and altitude.

G1000 Electronic Flight Display

The airspeed indicator is shown on the left side in the form of a color-coded vertical tape.

White = flap operating range

Green = Normal Operating Range

Yellow – Caution Range

Red & White (Barber Pole @ the top of the tape) = Never Exceed Range

Red (bottom of the tape) = Low Speed awareness.

V Speeds List

  • VSO  – Stall wooed in landing gear (with full flaps & gear down if it is retractable)
  • VS1  – Stall speed in clean configuration (no flaps extended)
  • VR  – Rotation Speed (Transition from takeoff roll to takeoff climb)
  • VG  – Best Glide speed (most amount of lift with the least amount of drag)
  • VX  – Best Angle of Climb (most altitude for a given distance)
  • VY  – Best Rate of Climb (most altitude for a given time)
  • VFE  – Maximum Flaps Extended speed for full flaps ( exceeding this speed with the flaps extended could cause damage to the flaps or wing)
  • VNO  – Maximum structural cruising speed (do not exceed this speed except in smooth air and then only with caution)
  • VNE  – Never exceed speed (Exceeding this could compromise the structural integrity and the aircraft)

Analog Air Speed Indicator

The analog air speed indicator has colored arcs showing the ranges that are marked on the face ion the instrument.

White arc = starts at VSO  and ends at  VFE

Green arc = starts at VS1 and ends at VNO

Yellow arc = starts at VNO and ends at VNE


On the digital G1000 electronic flight display, the altitude is shown on the right side in the form of a vertical tape. It is marked in 20 foot increments. The knob is adjusted by using the barometric pressure (BARO) knob to set the local altimeter setting in the barometric pressure window. The airport elevation is set by rotating the BARO knob until the airport elevation is set in the altitude window.

An analog altimeter is set by rotating the adjustment knob to the local altimeter setting in the barometric pressure window. This can also set the airport elevation by adjusting the hands of the instrument display to reflect the airport elevation.

To calculate the height above ground level AGL, subtract the elevation of the terrain from the altitude indicated on the flight display or analog instrument.

Reading the Altimiter

There are three hands on the altimeter of different sized. Small, medium and large. The smallest represents tens of thousands, the middle or medium represents thousands and the larges represents hundreds.

To read them, read the each of them together rhino add all of the readings. If a hand is between number, round it to the lowest just as you would a watch or clock.

Read tens of thousands first, then thousands then hundreds. Each tick of the hundreds (largest hand) represents 20 feet.

Vertical Speed Indicator

The “vertical speed indicator” (VSI) displays the aircraft’s rate of climb or descent.

On an electronic flight display such as there G1000, the VSI is shown to the right of the altimeter tape and uses a non-moving tape label at 1000 and 2000 feet per minute (FPM) with minor tick marks every 500 feet per minute (FPM)

On an analog instrument, there is a needle which is marked in 100 foot increments.