back to top

I Asked A Professor If It's Possible To Fly On A Broom And He Was Totally Unimpressed

We've all thought it.

Posted on

My name is Hikaru, and I want to fly on a broom.

Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

Like many people, growing up I watched Harry Potter and Kiki's Delivery service, and dreamt of actually flying on a broom.

Studio Ghibli/ Giphy

So I decided to ask a university professor whether it was really possible to fly on a broom. This is Professor Shinichiro Ito, from the Mechanical Engineering Department of Kogakuin University.

He is specializes in fluid mechanics, which researches the flow of liquids and air. Using his experience with researching the swimming styles of penguins and turtles, he invented the swimming style which is the standard of Japanese competitive swimming.
Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

He is specializes in fluid mechanics, which researches the flow of liquids and air. Using his experience with researching the swimming styles of penguins and turtles, he invented the swimming style which is the standard of Japanese competitive swimming.

"Hello," I said. "I would like to fly in the sky on a broom." "That's impossible," he said.

Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

Well that was quick. So why exactly is it was impossible. I asked him to explain

"Ok, I'll do my best so you can give up on your dream, then," he said.
Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

"Ok, I'll do my best so you can give up on your dream, then," he said.

To start, he said making a broom float *is* possible.

"Roughly speaking, if it's only a broom, you can make it float by pulling it at about 50km/h."
Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

"Roughly speaking, if it's only a broom, you can make it float by pulling it at about 50km/h."

So if you fasten a broom in a car with a string and pull it, it floats. Kind of.

So then wouldn't a person riding a broom kind of be possible?

"For a person to ride and fly with it, the shape and area of the wings are very important," he said. "Let’s look at a parachute”

"The area of the wing is wide, right? The angle is also calculated in a way that it captures the wind better."

Marcutti / Getty Images

"In contrast, the rear part of a broom, its wing portion, has a small area, and cannot hold wind" he said. "With this, it's impossible for a person to ride it and float."

Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

Okay, well since we're here, lets pretend the broom could fly, how would it work?

"If you were to ride it, the balance would be very important. First, unless you ride in the rear part, you would definitely flip down."

"More or less here," he said, using a doll version of myself I quickly put together.

Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

"Even if you get the balance right, if you flew at a speed at which a broom and a person can float, there would be an air resistance of about 750kg," he said. "Only if you had a grip strong enough to stand it, but that's impossible so, you would fall like this."

Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

"It would be like holding on in a roller coaster with your hands."

My very motivation to fly in the sky on a broom is going away."I'm glad to hear that," he said.
Rglinsky / Getty Images

My very motivation to fly in the sky on a broom is going away.

"I'm glad to hear that," he said.

So flying on a broom = impossible. But there must be a way to experience something close to flying on a broom?

"In that case," he said. "I think wingsuits are the closest thing"

Facebook: video.php

You would glide, but since wings are factored in, yes you can fly," he said. "Just drop from a high place. In you movies, they fly at about this height and speed, so I think the sensation is quite similar"

I suddenly lost my will to fly.

Vcg / Getty Images

"Good. I’m sorry for spoiling your dream," he said. "But I hope you have fun flying in a dream, at least!”

Hikaru Yoza / BuzzFeed

Top trending videos

Watch more BuzzFeed Video Caret right

Top trending videos

Watch more BuzzFeed Video Caret right
The best things at three price points