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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5 votes
1 answer
115 views

At what point do you release aircraft from an orbital lander

So I have a definitely-useful-definitely-not-way-too-big-mega-size-orbital-lander(tm) that is making planetfall. Some of the goods and passengers isnt that important and can be risked by unloading ...
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4 votes
4 answers
133 views

How would one go about designing a carrier sailing ship for flying mounts? [duplicate]

Specifically, I am looking for a good design for a sailing ship with circa 17th century Earth technology that can carry a large swath of flying animals ridden by very small humanoids. The animals ...
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4 votes
2 answers
102 views

What fighting style/martial arts, techniques etc. would work well for flying people? [closed]

Like in dragon ball, people can just levitate and defy gravity to move freely through the air. What techniques, methods, martial arts, and principles would be the most practical in a battleground ...
21 votes
19 answers
3k views

Antiballast for flying ship

Your miners find some strange stones - they float to the ceiling of mines. With those stones you can easily build an airship - just fill a sleek wooden hull with them and give the rowers some wing-...
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9 votes
9 answers
4k views

How much energy would it take to keep a floating city aloft?

My fantasy novel features a floating city. I wanted to know how much energy (joules/second) it would take to keep a floating city aloft, but the definition of joules has "distance displaced" ...
1 vote
3 answers
158 views

Is there any plausible way for a creature to fly in the way characters like superman does? [duplicate]

I'm making a superhero comic a little more grounded in reality. One of the characters in it is a genetically modified soldier who has abilities very similar to superman. How would such a character fly ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
184 views

Shape for injector spikes that provide the best seal

In the near-future story I'm working on the protagonist is prepared for a wide range of possibilities, including getting outnumbered and surrendered. For that possibility i though about a Banshee Box ...
4 votes
1 answer
117 views

Size cap of vertebrate fliers on "Flyers' World" (10atm, 0.5g)

On Earth, unlike what's often claimed, the largest current flying birds don't approach the size limit for flight with Earthly biology. Quetzalcoatlus might be getting close to the limit, though. A big ...
2 votes
2 answers
114 views

Could human-powered aircraft be practical on a low gravity world?

On a world with a third of Earth’s surface gravity, with an atmosphere with the same pressure, makeup, and temperature as Earth’s, could pedal powered aircraft be a viable and easy method of ...
  • 147
3 votes
3 answers
366 views

How fast can this guy safely fly?

I have a character that has powerful psychic abilites, these enable him to, among otherthings fly at high speeds and create transparent forcefields. However since these forcefrields are transparent, ...
8 votes
5 answers
628 views

Heated Hydrogen Zeppelin Cells

(Before I begin, I would like to assure everyone present that, yes, I'm fully aware of the lunacy of this idea.) Let us assume this takes place on a parallel Earth sometime in the early 1900s, during ...
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6 votes
3 answers
414 views

Evolution of flying animals on a windy planet

I'm thinking about the evolution of flight on a tidally locked planet where winds normally are 70 km/h (45 km/h) and can easily reach 120 km/h (75 mph). I've recently asked about clothes humans wear ...
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8 votes
5 answers
3k views

What's a reasonable timeframe for civilian survivors to learn how to fly a helicopter on their own?

Post-Apocalyptic modern world, a group of civilian survivors about three dozen in number find themselves trapped in a military base. They have no way out except by air. The military base has a dozen ...
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14 votes
4 answers
2k views

If a dragon could fly without magical assistance, how much force could a dragon exert in directed air attacks using the force of its wings?

I plan to have dragons in my fantasy setting and wanted to figure out just how much force their wings would need to generate in order for them to fly. Rules for dragons in this setting: Dragons, and ...
  • 2,876
3 votes
2 answers
221 views

Can a superhuman swim in air?

Assume the superhuman has no powers besides super strength, speed, durability and coordination. What would be the optimal way for them to fly without any assistance?(no gadgets, suits and additional ...
  • 551
5 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is my character's wingspan designed well?

My question is simply whether my character as shown in the picture, Would it be able to fly and Would it look believable if it did fly? I have seen similar posts but all refer to wing types more ...
16 votes
8 answers
2k views

Powering a fixed-wing aircraft in the upper Venusian atmosphere

I am writing a short story about a fighter pilot on Venus, I was advised on my other post to break up the post into multiple others. What are viable methods to power a fixed-wing aircraft in the upper ...
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2 votes
4 answers
1k views

Why broom made of broomcorn flies higher than those made of straw? [closed]

There are many different materials suitable to make a broom, however only brooms that are made of broomcorn and straws are the most sought after. Note that all broom-squires are muggles and back then ...
  • 46.1k
3 votes
2 answers
185 views

Could a creature use reptile scales to fly?

I know that feathers evolved from scales, but I was wondering if a bird could have feathers that kept the scales' "hardiness". For this scenario I want to go over a few things. Evolution ...
3 votes
1 answer
99 views

What would realistic racing hovercraft look like in terms of aerodynamics?

This is a follow up to a previous question of mine: How do I keep my futuristic racing hovercraft from becoming airplanes? I'm in planning stages for a futuristic racing game and I'm trying to figure ...
  • 2,876
9 votes
5 answers
4k views

How do migratory dragons avoid being blinded by sun?

These dragons are as big as double decker with wing span approaching 20m measuring from tip to tip, they migrate in large numbers and fly at an altitude between 10,000m to 20,000m above sea level. ...
  • 46.1k
5 votes
3 answers
99 views

Powered flying baseball

Suppose you conceal a small flywheel in a baseball (something that spins very fast with a lot of momentum for its size and weight). The coupling between flywheel and the outer skin of the ball is ...
  • 21.4k
5 votes
2 answers
194 views

Could membranous wings work along with an exoskeleton?

Essentially, my world has arthropod-like creatures with exoskeletons based on chitin, but while some are mostly like earth arthropods, one group specifically developed traits more observed in ...
0 votes
3 answers
234 views

How much surface area would a dragon's wings need to let it fly?

The dragon is 350kg, and should be able to fly up to 2.5 km above sea level. Gravity and atmospheric pressure are normal. There isn't much of a limit for the muscle's strength and bone resistance, but ...
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22 votes
7 answers
2k views

Riding Flying Animals, sitting or lying on them?

A long time ago I asked a question about dragon saddlery(Dragon Riding Question) and later on how to pilot flying animals(How to pilot flying animals?), but recently I saw a lot of art on the internet ...
  • 2,674
8 votes
1 answer
226 views

If a hawk-person teaches a peacock-person to fly, what kinds of maneuvers will the peacock-person be capable of?

Imagine two races, both of human-level intelligence: Hawklings are raptor-like (as in falcons, hawks, eagles, etc) flying humanoids who have six limbs: legs, arms, and wings. They live on high cliffs ...
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3 votes
6 answers
857 views

Would there be any ways to theoretically have powered flight before the invention of an engine?

Would there be any ways to theoretically have powered flight before the invention of an engine? I am trying to design some way to power a plane before the invention of the engine. I need the plane to ...
13 votes
4 answers
340 views

How Big Can An Ancient Bird Powered Glider Get?

What are the practical limitations of a glider made of bronze age materials and pulled by well trained birds? Due to psychics able to control animals, and a cultural fixation with domestication, ...
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4 votes
2 answers
184 views

Is it effective for a dragon to have a bat-like wing structure with feathers?

To elaborate further, is it possible to fly if a creature has the wing structure of a bat, but instead of membranous skin, they have feathers?
4 votes
2 answers
132 views

What adaptations would a winged humanoid species have to be able to live on a mountain peak?

Okay, so I have a species that are humanoid but have wings, and live up on mountain peaks, like where all the snow is. They are sentient like humans, and have the same level of intelligence. I'm ...
7 votes
4 answers
868 views

What if large pterosaurs like Quetzalcoatlus had survived as isolates in New Zealand and ended up domesticated by the Maori?

The question. Let's say a pterosaur like Q. Northropi survived as an isolate and thrived as apex predator in New Zealand for millions of years. Without much evolutionary pressure its species remained ...
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5 votes
1 answer
107 views

Winged jetpack vs palm repulsors, which has more mobility in air?

Winged jetpack comes with 2 set of fixed thrusters and a pair of foldable wings with adjustable aileron. (You put on the jetpack like a schoolbag) Palm repulsors are heavy duty gloves each is equipped ...
  • 46.1k
4 votes
3 answers
153 views

How would slimy scales help a dragon to fly faster?

Fish scales consist of glycol-proteins - the kind of mucus that is supposed to reduce drag in the water - but in the air, prolonged exposure from UV would destroy this slime and I seriously doubt it ...
  • 46.1k
4 votes
2 answers
191 views

How large could a passenger airship be built with 1920s era technology?

I am writing a steampunk novel set in a human world without computer chips, heavier than air aircraft, or recyclable plastic. How large could a passenger airship be built using 1920s era technology? ...
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3 votes
1 answer
121 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 ...
17 votes
7 answers
3k views

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 ...
  • 2,674
0 votes
5 answers
298 views

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 ...
  • 2,674
6 votes
1 answer
197 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 ...
  • 2,674
2 votes
2 answers
158 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? ...
  • 1,652
4 votes
2 answers
115 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
106 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 ...
  • 9,712
6 votes
6 answers
1k views

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 ...
  • 2,674
1 vote
2 answers
220 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 ...
  • 12.6k
1 vote
1 answer
186 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 ...
  • 12.6k
2 votes
1 answer
115 views

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. ...
0 votes
0 answers
80 views

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 ...
  • 2,674
5 votes
2 answers
222 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 ...
  • 2,674
8 votes
3 answers
476 views

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 ...
  • 9,712
5 votes
4 answers
261 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 ...
  • 91
5 votes
2 answers
129 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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