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Airplanes and Aircraft

Can aeroplane stop in the air?


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November 26, 2008 6:16PM

Not usually, no. If the airplane where to stop, the wings would no longer produce lift (this is called a stall) and the airplane would fall. Of course in falling, the airplane would rapidly build speed and recover.

However, there are airplanes such as the Harrier jet which can hover in mid-air. This is done using "vectored thrust" where the jet engine's thrust is directed downward. This is a very tricky maneuver even for these aircraft and so it is not a common design element of modern aircraft.