Researchers: Real falling Batman would crash, die

Analysis finds bat cape ineffective for high-speed descent

Published On: Jul 10 2012 11:17:57 AM EDT   Updated On: Jul 11 2012 10:50:45 AM EDT
Dark Knight Batman over city

A group of British researchers said despite a superhero effort to prove otherwise, their calculations confirm that if Batman could glide down from the top of buildings, he would most assuredly crash and die.

In a paper entitled the "Trajectory of a falling Batman," University of Leicester researchers found that while Batman does effectively use his cape to control his fall in the 2005 film "Batman Begins," their research has determined that in reality, his landing from such an attempt would prove fatal, Reuters reported.

"If Batman wanted to survive the flight, he would definitely need a bigger cape," physics researcher David Marshall said. "Or if he preferred to keep his style intact, he could opt for using active propulsion, such as jets to keep himself aloft."

According to the analysis, if Batman jumped from a 492-foot tall Gotham City building, the 15-foot wingspan of his bat cape would allow him to glide 1,148 feet.

However, gravity would still propel him up to a speed of 68 mph before the caped crusader hit the ground. Even if he slowed a bit to 50 mph, the impact would still be deadly or severely damaging -- the equivalent of being hit by a high-speed car, Reuters reported.

Fans of the comics and film series will have another chance to see how the crime-fighter survives the odds in the latest installment of the movie franchise "The Dark Knight Rises" which hits theaters on July 20.

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