Calculating Field Length Requirements for a Jet Takeoff


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Jet plane takeoff is governed by the length of the runway: Image credit jelle80nl

One Engine Inoperative AFTER Decision Speed

If a single engine failure in a jet aircraft were to occur after the airplane has crossed its decision speed, the plane must necessarily takeoff. This is due to the fact that the accelerating jet has now acquired a momentum that will not allow it to stop within the runway length available. It must takeoff, or it will crash.

However, the FARs state that in such a scenario the jet aircraft must not rotate before the rotation speed, and must acquire a pre-set safety speed (V2) at/before the screen height.

Calculating Field Length Before Takeoff

Field length calculations for a jet plane help in determining the appropriate gross weight of the aircraft for takeoff. If the calculated takeoff distance exceeds any of the three above established standards, the weight of the plane must be reduced to bring it back within limits, and ensure a successful takeoff.


Boeing. Takeoff Performance. (2009). Accessed January 27, 2012.

Takeoff Safety Training Aid. Pilot Guide to Takeoff Safety. Accessed January 27, 2012.

Quest for Performance: The Evolution of Modern Aircraft. FAR Landing and Takeoff Field Lengths. Accessed January 27, 2012.

Lund University School of Aviation and Nordic Aviation Resources.  Performance. (2001).

Federal Aviation Administration. FAA Regulations. Accessed January 27, 2012.

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