Is it is possible in real life to make a aircraft carriers size ships to fly in the sky like the flying things we seen in avengers movie?

  • $\begingroup$ In theory you could build a huge airship or something that would have impressive physical size - but it wouldn't have a very high lifting capacity. The sort of thing in the movie is all sci-fi at the moment. Actually there is a scifi stack exchange section you might like... ( scifi.stackexchange.com ) $\endgroup$
    – Andy
    Oct 9, 2015 at 14:54
  • $\begingroup$ Like jet engines for jumbo jet,if we can use a related proportion engines to a vehicle of a size of aircraft carrier,will it raise and fly like a aeroplane. if it follows aerodynamic design. $\endgroup$
    – Muralidhar
    Oct 9, 2015 at 16:54
  • $\begingroup$ Airborne aircraft carrier did exist, but were airship. I bet with today's (2015) technology, an aircraft carrier sized ship would also be some kind of airship such as the skycat. $\endgroup$
    – Manu H
    Oct 12, 2015 at 16:29
  • $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is more suitable for SciFi.SE. $\endgroup$ Oct 15, 2015 at 6:51
  • $\begingroup$ @SentryRaven I don't believe they'd accept it. They don't seem interested in questions about real-world physics. $\endgroup$
    – Dan Hulme
    Oct 15, 2015 at 7:28

1 Answer 1


Possible: Yes

You can in theory lift anything. To do this you will simply need to generate an equal or exceeding amount of lift than the weight of the object. You will also need to generate enough thrust to achieve said situation. The closest thing I can think of to this was Howard Hughes Spruce Goose which did actually fly. If you are talking about the kind of vertical hovering that the ship in the movie does you would need to generate an amazing amount of thrust to achieve that. A US Nimitz-Class aircraft carrier displaces 100,000 long tons (224,000,000 LBS) so you would need to generate at least that much thrust but in reality you would need to generate more to overcome drag and to actually accelerate the craft vertically. For a point of comparison the Saturn V rocket weighed 3270 tons (6,540,000 pounds).

If we work through a quick example (these are very very lose numbers), lets take the Nimitz at 224,000,000LBS and the GE90 jet engine (currently the biggest turbo fan jet). The GE90 generates about 115,000 lbf of thrust. So it would take just under 2000 GE90s to generate enough thrust. But lets round it off at 2000 for ease of use and a bit of extra power. The diameter of the engine is 3.429m and the Nimitz is 332.8m long. You would need arms with 10 engines a piece just to make all 2000 engines fit down the length of the side. If they were stacked directly next to each other the arms would be about 35m in length. The bigger issue here is fuel flow/mass. You would need to lift enough fuel to actually power these engines for a useable amount of time.

On the more sifi side of things, you could use the Nimitz's nuclear reactor to power ducted fans which overcomes the fuel problem to an extent but I dont have any numbers on that.

  • $\begingroup$ is right, you could in theory lift just about anything if you solve the material and power problems. Why you would want to is beyond me though, all you'd be doing is floating a big target. $\endgroup$
    – GdD
    Oct 9, 2015 at 14:05
  • $\begingroup$ ... Come on it's just impossible, and you know it. Of course with infinite power you can achieve anything, but we live in a finite world. $\endgroup$
    – Antzi
    Oct 9, 2015 at 14:50
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Its not impossible at all, the weight is very quantifiable and the thrust requirements are easily calculated. While we may not be able to achieve it with modern avionics that does not mean that it would not be possible. $\endgroup$
    – Dave
    Oct 9, 2015 at 14:51
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Adding 2,000 GE90 engines will also add at least an additional 40,000,000 lb of weight, not considering all the support structure and equipment needed, and then considering the thrust decreases with altitude... $\endgroup$
    – fooot
    Oct 9, 2015 at 15:45
  • $\begingroup$ Mount the engines along the sides (facing out) and deflect the thrust downwards. That might make the structure hot though... $\endgroup$
    – Andy
    Oct 9, 2015 at 15:49

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