Batman? More like Splatman!

As the new Batman movie by Christopher Nolan is fast approaching release date (and I for one can’t wait!), please indulge me in a Batman related science story!
The Dark Knight Rises, and Crashes: Students Discover Batman’s Cape Gliding Technique Is Fatally Flawed

Physics students have calculated that the superhero’s method of using his cape to glide from tall buildings — as seen in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins — would result in him hitting the ground at life-threateningly high speeds.

In the film, the caped crusader — played by Christian Bale — wears a cape which becomes rigid when a current is passed through it, allowing him to glide over Gotham City in a similar manner to a base jumper in a wingsuit.

Four MPhys students from the University of Leicester have published a paper claiming that although this method of gliding would be possible, Batman would be likely to suffer a fatal collision when he reached the ground.

Due to the high speeds he would be travelling, his impact with the ground would be equivalent to him being struck by a car travelling at 50 miles per hour.

The group concluded that DC Comics’ superhero should consider taking a parachute with him if he wanted to stay in one piece.


Source: Science Daily

So the cape in the movie would allow him to glide but would have an awful brake mechanism, due to the short span of his wings/cape.

Perhaps he should call Superman for some pointers.

Nana nana nana nana Splatman!

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  11 comments for “Batman? More like Splatman!

  1. a passing sasquatch
    July 9, 2012 at 3:04 PM

    Breaking news; Superheroes aren’t necessarily realistic?!

    More at 11.

    I’d like to see some people try to build a functioning bat-glider-like rig (plus parachute apparently, to avoid splattery).

    • Geoff
      July 10, 2012 at 10:43 AM

      It’s science fiction, you geeks, not science fact. 😉

  2. Massachusetts
    July 9, 2012 at 3:59 PM

    This reminds me of the opening seen in the movie “Kick Ass.” Talk about Splat Man!

    • snoma
      July 9, 2012 at 4:27 PM

      Hehe, now that was Splat Man for sure!

      • Massachusetts
        July 9, 2012 at 8:47 PM

        snoma, you are one of the editors? Your text is in read. How many are there here?

        • July 9, 2012 at 9:33 PM

          Yes. He is. There are only two of us.

          I think the author shows up in red.

          • Massachusetts
            July 10, 2012 at 5:55 AM

            No wonder you are busy! So much news to cover and comment on!

        • snoma
          July 10, 2012 at 3:09 PM

          Yes, I am co-editor. I’m also the author of this post. You can see who the author is in small print under the headline.

  3. July 9, 2012 at 8:23 PM

    there is no more effective brake than the ground.

  4. Massachusetts
    July 9, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    And remember, since we are on the theme of splat, according to Myth Busters falling from a great hight into water is NOT equivalent to falling onto concrete–myth Busted!

    • July 10, 2012 at 10:44 AM

      Maybe, but if you can’t swim it doesn’t matter.

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