Flight ceiling

Flight ceiling

A flight ceiling is the upper altitudinal limit at which any aircraft may fly given its mechanical abilities. For aviation purposes, ceiling is defined as the height (AGL) of the lowest broken or overcast layer aloft or vertical visibility into an obscuration. Refer to Aviation Weather Manual AC 00-6A.

The term service ceiling refers to the height at which an aircraft's rate of climb, under standard atmospheric conditions, is 100 ft or 30 metres per minute.

The ceiling also refers to the height of the lowest cloud layer above the ground, below which Visual meteorological conditions exist, permitting flight by visual flight rules. For example, a layer of overcast or broken clouds having a base of 3,000 ft. above the ground would constitute a "ceiling" of 3,000 ft. The absence of any overcast or broken cloud layers is referred to as an "unlimited" ceiling.

ee also

* [http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=2f071ed84a5b03fe290b306846c86633&rgn=div8&view=text&node=14: U.S. Federal Aviation Regulations defining visual meteorological conditions.]

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