Questions tagged [flight]

For questions related to the act or process of flying through an atmosphere. Includes any means of propelling oneself through the atmosphere of a world, including biological or technological. Does not include flight outside an atmosphere (compare [space-travel]). Compare [aircraft] and [airships], which are about the machines themselves.

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0answers
74 views

Would this be able to glide?

On my planet there is a fish that acts as a pollinator. It has 2 fins, one on each side. When it jumps from the water both it’s fins spilt into two revealing a web of skin. The reason it does this ...
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7answers
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How to pilot flying animals?

I made a post a while ago about how to saddle a dragon. I recently remembered that, and another question came up: how to pilot a flying animal? Land animals tend to run in the direction their heads ...
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5answers
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Gas lighter than air

I'm in the process of creating flying creatures big enough to be mounted, but there's a problem: the bigger the size, the heavier the weight, the heavier the weight, the more difficult (or even ...
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1answer
139 views

Strong flying creatures

I'm in the process of creating flying animals big enough to carry a human being on their back, the problem is that if it's too big, the wingspan also has to be and muscle will be needed for the wings ...
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2answers
150 views

Sprinting Downforce on Titan

Since Titan has high air pressure, but low gravity, could settlers there wear wings or other methods of downforce (passive or active) on their suits/clothes to keep themselves grounded while they run? ...
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2answers
100 views

What is the advantages and disadvantages of a creature capable of splitting sections of their wings apart?

I was trying to make a creature for a fictional dimension that is extremely hot and has many cliffs and difficult to maneuver areas, leading me to the conclusion that flying creatures would be ...
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1answer
77 views

How should a balloon alien’s gas bladder work?

How do floating aliens work? They are portrayed as having a large gas bladder or sack that keeps them neutrally buoyant while they propel themselves through the air. A notable example of this is ...
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6answers
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Flight in Zero Gravity

In short: my last post was about a world of flying islands. The world is like a huge gaseous sphere (with the same gases as the Earth's atmosphere, but without the effects of pollution) with several ...
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2answers
135 views

Might this animal be able to fly?

This animal is a hybrid creature with a strange form that seems incapable of flight They have a streamlined, mammalian head, and the neck is long and flexible like a bird. However, it is much thicker ...
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1answer
134 views

Using winged-quadruped anatomy for many-winged fliers

There are many depictions of winged quadrupeds (tetrapods with 4 legs and wings as well), such as griffins, dragons, and Pegasus. Often they have a rather plausible-seeming shoulder anatomy Could this ...
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Can I make a functional wingsail out of pre-industrial materials?

Definition of a wingsail, from Wikipedia: A wingsail, twin-skin sail or double skin sail is a variable-camber aerodynamic structure that is fitted to a marine vessel in place of conventional sails. ...
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Light Gas for Large Flyers [duplicate]

I'm kind of on a journey in search of how to scientifically explain fantastic creatures in a way that doesn't rely on magic, because I think that makes things more interesting. Currently my biggest ...
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2answers
194 views

Pegasus Flight Problem

I've been searching here at the WBSE (I hope this acronym is correct and doesn't offend anyone) for answers on how a pegasus could be scientifically correct and I found these post: Anatomically ...
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3answers
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How would the anatomy of a bird that flies with its legs work?

I'm designing fauna for my story and I'd like to incorporate birds but with a twist! Instead of having wings adapted for flight their legs serve that purpose. Ordinary birds have most their muscle ...
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4answers
184 views

How would you design a race of small humanoids such that they could ride a Quetzalcoatlus?

I would like to know whether it would be possible for a sufficiently small humanoid to ride a Quetzalcoatlus, a species of pterosaur alive during the late Cretaceous. Plausible adaptations to the ...
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2answers
77 views

What would be the physical characteristics of a sapient, mountain-adapted, gliding mammal capable of magically producing thrust?

Introduction My question is basically about what a gliding mammal that can magically produce thrust would look like, whilst meeting these criteria: Can use tools to a sufficient level to develop ...
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3answers
162 views

Additional applications for advanced airships in my earth-like world

Recently I have asked a question about assessing the viability of airships in the scenario of my world, concentrating mainly on their usage as cargo haulers. The answers have been pretty positive and ...
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1answer
124 views

Viability of a jet modelled after a dragonfly?

Insects in the order Odonata have tow pairs of wings that can be moved independently, their compound eyes grand them full 360° vision and their bodies are elongated. They can flap their wings out of ...
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1answer
61 views

Hycean world life questions

https://www.space.com/amp/new-class-habitable-exoplanets-hycean-worlds Hycean worlds are planets 2.5 the size of Earth with huge oceans and lots of hydrogen in their atmosphere. They're probably ...
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2answers
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How feasible would aerostat settlements be in my world?

For a while I have been considering adding aerostatic settlements within my world, which would be emblematic of the more advanced civilizations/societies/entities, hosting a number of people ranging ...
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3answers
764 views

Get out of the planet without fuel propulsion

Can electricity be used to propel aircraft out of the atmosphere and into space? If not, what other other options are there to get heavy stuff away from the planet? Why the question? Fuel is limited ...
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21answers
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Are "bicycles" for flying species possible?

Flying is hard. Most flying species can lift comparatively minuscule amounts of mass in the air beside themselves. Flying is also exhausting, there are only so many species that can soar in the sky ...
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4answers
172 views

Is it possible to create a small aircraft drawn by flying creatures?

I would want to create a realistic spin on the "chariot drawn by flying creatures" as often seen in fantasy, such as Santa Claus' sled drawn by flying reindeer etc. My idea is for a vessel ...
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5answers
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What type of safety features would a commercial nuclear jet aircraft have?

Let's say that you have a commercially/privately-operated jet aircraft. It's not something that's going to be used by a single pilot, or someone making mail runs, or a bush pilot; it's more of the ...
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11answers
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Uses for Griffins and Other Flying Creatures in a Modern Air Force?

My book series is set in a rapidly industrializing galaxy, and one of my planets (which has a sort of late medieval-early Renaissance tech level) has griffins, pegasi, hippogriffs, and other large ...
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1answer
81 views

My sapient race has the ability to fly. How would this affect their basic architecture? [duplicate]

I’m writing a fairy-like humanoid race that have the ability of flight through biological/magical means. They are in their equivalent of an early medieval era and are the sole sapient species in their ...
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4answers
137 views

Feasibility of a sand gliding creature?

Would it make sense for a desert creature to glide along the sand to traverse long distances? There's a number of gliding animals in nature, most of which use it as an efficient travel option for long ...
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14answers
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How do I keep my futuristic racing hovercraft from becoming airplanes?

I'm working on a science fiction racing game that is centered around hovercraft that will race through various environments, both natural and man-made. I'm trying to establish a design language for ...
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1answer
69 views

How much thermal energy, in joules per centimeter squared, is required to ignite common aerospace materials?

How much thermal energy, measured in joules per centimeter squared, would be required to: melt (or ignite, if possible) commonly-used commercial airliner paint melt (or ignite, if possible) commonly ...
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7answers
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Could a combination of cheap energy and powerful thrusters turn good aerodynamic design into something that isn't always worth the cost?

For a science fiction setting I'm working on, I'm trying to make a clear division between ships made exclusively for space flight, atmospheric flight and dual-purpose ships that can fly in both. The ...
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1answer
199 views

Perpetual motion machines and supersonic flight

Related to Perpetual motion machines and rocketry. In my current worldbuilding project, people commonly employ enigmatic Clarkean machines called "spinners". They are two adjoined cubes, ...
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23answers
6k views

How to prevent the evolution of human flight?

The more I look at it, the more my world seems to resemble the world of Avatar the Last Airbender, but instead of benders I have casters which are capable of unique talents (combat magic, enhancements,...
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2answers
176 views

Could bats evolve to have beaks?

I understand that pterosaurs and birds evolved from having teeth to beaks as beaks are lighter than teeth and can serve the same function. pterosaurs laid eggs, and birds currently lay eggs, while ...
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5answers
439 views

How to Explain the Use of Sails in an Airship Powered By Crystals

I recently got back into the Shannara series by Terry Brooks and it has me wanting to take a shot at adapting the material into a TTRGP setting. One of the things that I'm hung up on is how to explain ...
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3answers
294 views

Would a bat's wing be improved with feathers?

Bats and birds have very different wings, but if you were to combine them, giving bats feathers on top of their membranous wings, would that improve their flight? Or would it just be a useless, maybe ...
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8answers
1k views

Realistic way of damaging a plane to lead to a survivable crash

I'd like to approach this in a sort of hard sci-fi way, where the following is grounded in something plausible. Suppose we want to take a plane down at a reasonable speed where there is a 30% chance ...
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5answers
458 views

Can a "knockout bird" fly?

For an alternate Earth I am trying to develop a type of flying creature which poses an unusual threat model for the unaware explorers wandering in their habitat: when the creature is flying above 10 ...
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4answers
430 views

Scaling up the bat wing: still a good alternative for a large flying animal or inferior to a pterosaur wing?

My creature is an alien roughly 3 meters tall while standing (roughly 2,5 meters at the shoulders, with arms that can touch the ground while standing upright) and weights roughly 220 kg (roughly 485 ...
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5answers
327 views

How Could my People Avoid Altitude Sickness While Riding Giant Birds?

In my book series, some of the people of the planet Aurea use giant vultures called Argentavis for transport and aerial combat. These domesticated, selectively bred birds are far larger than their ...
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1answer
154 views

How would dragons utilize ships?

I'm writing a fantasy novel with a race of intelligent and technologically advanced dragons. now, if we pretend that they can somehow fly, How would they utilize boats and ships in order to traverse ...
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4answers
2k views

Boom of the Thunderbird

Could wings and feathers be capable of creating a sonic boom like whips do? The thunder bird of native American myths was a large raptor that was often accompanied by bad weather and the sound of ...
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2answers
234 views

How would a four (or more) winged dragon fly? what would the wingspan be?

it has an elongated body, and the wings are 2 pairs and 2 pairs behind those, at a sufficient distance so they do not get in each other's way, unless the dragon wants them to, also not too far apart, ...
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1answer
338 views

Could creatures similar to old testament angels actually fly?

I am writing a novela which includes beings similar to the depiction of angels in the Old Testament. Edit: not relevant to the question (The story is set in the present day, England, but the beings ...
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4answers
344 views

Vacuum airships

Airships fly thanks to their weight. The m3 you occupy should be lighter than the m3 of whatever you want to float around in (bit of a simplification). To achieve this they make a big balloon and fill ...
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6answers
206 views

could a helium balloon be large enough to hold up an island?

I'm wondering if its possible to make a helium blimp large enough to hold up an island (big enough to lift the island of Nauru) at an altitude of about 4500 feet above sea level. how much helium would ...
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3answers
276 views

How could a winged human hide very big wings [duplicate]

So I've seen a question similar to this one, but the wings were much shorter. I've got a character that's about 5ft tall and has wings from about his shoulders to his calves. Think avian-human hybrid (...
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7answers
293 views

What changes to planetary atmosphere, available materials or technology could make biplanes and triplanes remain dominant?

I like aircraft with multiple wings stacked atop each other; in an alternate world (undergoing a similar technological history to our planet but with a different aesthetic) I would like them to remain ...
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4answers
201 views

How does a flying hydra work?

A hydra is a multi-headed beast usually depicted as a serpent in many mythologies. I suppose each head should have an independent brain and thus would each have a different wake/sleep cycle not unlike ...
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2answers
367 views

Air vehicles for birds

I want to make a race of sapient birds,they are starting their own industrial revolution. Is it possible for them to develop air vehicles even though they can fly without them??
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2answers
167 views

Could A Dragon Really Survive Given the Right Conditions?

So I have been trying to design a dragon that is somewhat realistic and I wanted to see if it was plausible in the our real world, despite dragons being very unrealistic. I also wanted to know what ...

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