Turbulence Definitions



Operational Definitions of Turbulence Categories

 

Category

 

Measures

 

 

Horizontal

Vertical

Light

        Rhythmic bumpiness without appreciable changes in altitude and/or attitude,

        Momentary, slight, erratic changes in altitude and/or attitude,

        No loss of control,

 

 

3 - 5 knots per 1000 feet

Moderate

        Rapid bumps or jolts without appreciable changes in altitude and/or attitude

        Momentary, erratic changes in altitude and/or attitude and variation in airspeed attitude

        No loss of control

24 - 49 knots per 90 nautical miles

6 - 9 knots per 1000 feet

Severe

        Large, abrupt changes in altitude and/or attitude,

        Momentary loss of control

50 - 89 knots per 90 nautical miles

10 - 15 knots per 1000 feet

Extreme

        Violent tossing,

        Loss of control,

        Possible damage

> 90 knots per 90 nautical miles

> 15 knots per 1000 feet

 

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