Batman 'could' fly, but he'd be unable to survive the impact upon landing, so a group of eggheads from the University of Leicester have deducted after investigating how feasible the superhero's method of using his cape to glide from building to building would be in real life. In the film 'The Dark Knight Rises' - directed by Christopher Nolan - the caped crusader's cape stiffens when a current passes through it, in reality though he'd apparently be more likely to hit the ground at life-threatening speeds, with the scientists suggesting that perhaps he should use a parachute instead.

"If Batman wanted to survive the flight, he would definitely need a bigger cape. Or if he preferred to keep his style intact he could opt for using active propulsion, such as jets to keep himself aloft" said 22 year-old student David Marshall. "If he really wanted to stick with tradition he could follow the method of Gary Connery, who recently became the first person to glide to the ground from a helicopter using only a wingsuit, although he only made it down safely using a large number of cardboard boxes."

Course leader Dr Mervyn Roy, a lecturer at the University's Department of Physics and Astronomy, said: "If he had bigger wings he would be fine, like someone in a hang glider. But Batman wouldn't stand too much of a chance with wings this short due to the speeds he would be travelling at."