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Not too long ago, famed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson stopped by the Star Talk radio show with Chuck Nice. They spent a fair amount of time talking various aspects of superheroes and their comic book portrayals. But the conversation really picked up when it shifted to deciding which superhero would be the most realistic in today's world.
When the time came for Tyson to give his pick, it wasn't all that surprising to hear him select the most feasible superhero, one who's been deemed realistic in the past. Check out the video below and find out who Neil DeGrasse Tyson thinks would be the most believable superhero: Batman.
Most of us probably expected Tyson to pick Batman because he is the one superhero who could reasonably exist in our world today. He wouldn't get too far working as a vigilante but the means to become Batman are there, and that's what Tyson gets around to pointing out in his explanation.
Tyson comes to the conclusion that all the gadgets Batman utilizes in his vigilante crusade are realistic in the modern day we live in. From grappling hooks to hacking devices, everything the Dark Knight carries in his utility belt can be grounded to something realistic in our world. You probably won't see batarangs flying around, but anything short of Batman's signature throwing knives is possible. All things considered, Tyson also makes a valid argument for why Batman is more realistic than most superheroes, even Batman's Marvel counterpart, Iron Man.
So How Does Batman Stack Up to Iron Man?
Following up on that, Tyson emphasizes that the big distinction between the two is how Iron Man requires an arc reactor, a massive energy source to power his suit, whereas Batman doesn't need anything extraordinary to power his gadgets. Batman's suit may have electrical and mechanical components, but for the most part, his suit is just that—a suit. Stark's suit on the other hand, isn't realistic because of the device he needs to power it.
In his explanation, Tyson breaks down the physical mechanics of an energy source like the one Stark would need to power one of his Iron Man suits. He points that such a high concentration of electricity would become extremely hot, essentially melting anything that comes into contact with it- including Stark's armor and body. There are currently no means to control such a large quantity of energy in a confined space, therefore the concentration of energy that Tony Stark supposedly manipulates into the arc reactor just isn't realistic. Though, Tyson does give Iron Man credit in how his suits give him the ability to "wipe the floor" with Batman, which sort of puts that long-standing debate of who would win to rest—but that topic is a conversation best left for another time.