What Do You Think You Are, A Helicopter?!: Watch An Airbus A330 'Hovering' In Midair

November 10, 2011


This is a video from France of a 230-ton Airbus A330 "hovering" in midair. Because if there's one thing that's terrifying to watch from a window-seat, it's the plane not moving. Jk jk, it's a wing breaking off, but still.

The phenomenon has an easy explanation: the Airbus is making a very slow low pass, taking advantage of the very strong head wind combined with the minimun air speed and a high angle of attack to achieve lift for its flaps configuration...

This produces extremely low ground speed, which results from the A330's air speed minus the speed of the head wind. The combination of this ground speed and the A330's size give the viewer the sensation of a plane almost frozen in midair.

You know what's even more impressive than a hovering plane? A hovering wizard. And this is me on Halloween doing just that! Now I know what you're wondering, and yes, the beard is real. Same goes for the laser eyes. "Come on, that was just the flash!" HA, there was no flash, I took that shit with my mind.

Hit the jump for the AAAAAAAAAAH, WE'RE GOING DOWN! (action starts at the 20-second mark if you're the world's most impatient video watcher)

Watch this 230-ton Airbus A330 Stopping In Midair for a Few Seconds [gizmodo]

Thanks to I'm Never Flying Again, who's trying to act like he's never flying again because of this video and not the fact he's been banned from every major airline for getting drunk and taking his pants off.

  • Wow! It looks like in slow motion.

  • It's just the level of thrust compared to pitch of the plane. Pilots at air shows do this sort of thing all the time. Granted it probably takes one hell of a pilot to do it with a plane like that. If people were out on the runway watching this, it was probably a demonstration for show.

  • Peter_Pedro

    The pilot must be very confident of his ski... ugh of the winds.

  • what they don't tell you is that the moment the wind dies, so does every person on that plane.

  • JoeAconite

    This is when a guy dressed as Magneto should stand out by the runway.

  • Guest

    I wouldn't say so much of hovering.....a rolling stop is just slowly driving...the "hovering" is just slowly flying forwards. But it's pretty impressive that they're going that speed without dropping like a potato. 

  • Charles Whelan

    The good part starts at 0:01

  • Smartalix

    It's so obvious... look at the string... duh

  • jaime_arg

    I am (the world's most impatient video watcher, that is). Everyone should always tell everyone when the good part starts. I DON'T HAVE 20 SECONDS TO SPARE, DAMNIT!

  • alexpkeatonUCF

    Ho!  What demonry!

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