E195 specs:

  • Maximum Takeoff Weight 52,290 kg
  • Max Cruise Speed M 0.82
  • Cruise altitude: 35000 feet

Assume the weather condition is perfect (no clouds or gust winds). Also assume this airplane is fully loaded and just reached cruising altitude at its max speed. There and then, both jet motors immediately stops due to malfunction. No fire or anything, they just stop.

Given this scenario; will this aircraft be able to "glide" downwards for an emergency landing, or will it just drop dead and head for the earth? If it won't glide, how long will it take until it reaches the ground for impact?

(Reason for asking: me, being horribly scared of flying, just took a trip with this exact plane model, and I could not get the above thoughts out of my mind)

  • $\begingroup$ Possible duplicate of aviation.stackexchange.com/questions/2999/… $\endgroup$ May 12, 2019 at 9:24
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    $\begingroup$ Possible duplicate of How far can airplanes glide? $\endgroup$ May 12, 2019 at 9:25
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    $\begingroup$ "will this aircraft be able to "glide" downwards for an emergency landing" All aircraft can. That's how wings work. $\endgroup$ May 12, 2019 at 9:33
  • $\begingroup$ long in term of time or distance ? $\endgroup$
    – Antzi
    May 12, 2019 at 9:34
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    $\begingroup$ I disagree this is a dupe as the question is more specific (it asks for one specific model) $\endgroup$
    – Manu H
    May 12, 2019 at 11:22

2 Answers 2


It's a rather 'clean' plane. Its maximum L/D is, probably, at least 14. (The table shows cruise L/Ds. The L/Dmax is probably much higher in all cases...) Properly handled, and from 35000ft, it might glide for more than 140 kms...

From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lift-to-drag_ratio :

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ 10 is horrible L/D. Modern airliners start around 18, probably more for the newest generation like E195. $\endgroup$
    – Jan Hudec
    May 12, 2019 at 10:32
  • $\begingroup$ @JanHudec the general aerodynamic configuration hasn't really changed much except for the much fatter GTFs, so I wonder if the power off L/D isn't actually slightly less than the previous ones. $\endgroup$
    – John K
    May 12, 2019 at 12:31
  • $\begingroup$ @Jan Hudec Yes, you're right. 10 was too little. Corrected... $\endgroup$
    – xxavier
    May 12, 2019 at 12:48
  • $\begingroup$ You may provide the L/D ratio for the requested aircraft to answer the question $\endgroup$
    – Manu H
    May 13, 2019 at 5:40

Of course it will glide, and for many miles. The single engine plane that I flew would glide 9 times its altitude, and big commercial planes will glide even further.

As one relevant example, the Gimli Glider: From Wikipedia:



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    $\begingroup$ I doubt you provide an answer. The question apply to E195 and is not as generic as this one. $\endgroup$
    – Manu H
    May 13, 2019 at 8:29
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    $\begingroup$ @ManuH I answered the question, which was: "Given this scenario; will this aircraft be able to "glide" downwards for an emergency landing, or will it just drop dead and head for the earth?" It will glide. I cited the Gimli Glider as proof that certificated transport category aircraft glide rather well. What don't you understand about this? $\endgroup$ May 13, 2019 at 16:18
  • $\begingroup$ The question is: "For how long can an Embraer E195 airplane glide at malfunction?". It is aircraft specific (otherwise it would have been closed as dupe). The answer must be aircraft specific $\endgroup$
    – Manu H
    May 14, 2019 at 8:01
  • $\begingroup$ @ManuH: L/D values aren't typically published. I personally see no value in the specific nature of the question. However, please have your say here: Should the 'E195 gliding' question be closed or left open? $\endgroup$
    – user14897
    May 14, 2019 at 20:35

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