I was wondering if there were hang gliders that you could, say wear on your back, in which the wings would retract into the suit. Kind of like the falcon in the mcu? If they aren't there, why not?

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    $\begingroup$ Is it possible that the answer is "a parachute?" $\endgroup$ Jan 31 at 15:37
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    $\begingroup$ Not for humans. The creatures that have something like that are called "birds" and "bats". $\endgroup$ Jan 31 at 17:07
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    $\begingroup$ @quietflyer: Batman has also something similar 🦇. If I'm not wrong it works via piezoelectric effect $\endgroup$
    – sophit
    Sep 26 at 6:49

1 Answer 1


Collapsible hang gliders, in the sense I presume you mean here do not exist.

With retractable/collapsible hang gliders, the problem would be the size of the contraption. It would have to be very large to reach a reasonable glide ratio, so being able to fold down compactly is not really a viable concept. Also, the mechanism to enable it to fold down would be complex (because of the size), and thus quite likely heavy.

I'm guessing paraglider is not what you have in mind here, as it's deployment is quite an ordeal, not resembling the quick 'n easy "launch" of Falcon's wings in Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The closest match, although not a glider in any sense, would be Yves Rossy's winged Jet pack. It could be designed as collapsible, and it is somewhat transportable, not for longer distances though as it weight about 50kg. I'll venture a guess Rossy's jet pack has the glide ratio of approximately matching the space shuttle, which in turn was called the flying brick for more than one reason.


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