how should superman stop a plane from crashing?

lets say a plane is crashing to the ground due to reasons. Would it be better for him to fly under it and try to pick it up or get in front of a plane and blow on the wings until there is enough lift to make the plane fly without power.

He should get under the center of gravity and hold it up. Blowing on the wings is a little risky, if he blows too hard and if the air doesn’t move fairly symetrically over both wings the plane could go out of control. Blowing on the wings would also assume the control surfaces are still operational, if not he’s going to have to do a lot of work to keep the plane balanced. On top of all that he’d have to fly backward which would blow his cape up over his head and that would be stupid looking.

Pull the Earth out from under the plane.

“They bought their tickets, they knew what they were getting into. I say, let 'em crash.”

Sounds like the best general case solution. Of course, he’s got to get his hands on a spot that can support the weight of the plane, but near the CG is usually pretty good for that sort of thing. Perhaps one hand where the spar passes through the fuselage (landing gear attachment points would be good, too) to carry most of the weight, and the other hand somewhat forward of that for balance.

Based on my research (watching* Superman I* and* Superman Returns*), the best way is to get under the airplane and support it.

A 747 weighs (max takeoff) 700,000-970,000 lbs. depending on the model. All that weight will be supported on the square area of two palms. I don’t think the metal can take it.

He should take his super-stretchy cape and make for a cradle for the plane, so he can support it from above.

Most of the thinner parts of the skin probably couldn’t, but there are parts of the plane that are designed and built to carry that weight. When the plane is in the air, all the weight is being carried by the wings. The beam that runs along the length of a wing, through the fuselage, and then along the other wing is called the spar; grab that, even if you have to break through the skin to do it. When the plane is on the ground, all the weight is resting on the landing gear; the points where those connect to the plane can carry the weight. And I believe there are jacking points where the plane can be lifted, to change a tire, for example.

It’s gonna be more complicated than that. A 747 may have more than one spar through the fuselage, and there are four main landing gear legs. There may not be a single spot that can carry all the weight, but if there is, that’s where I’d look for it. And if you do find it, it’ll be aft of the CG; you’ll need some support ahead of that or just carry the plane nose down.

Superman should let the plane crash and then wait for the NTSB to make its report. With the report in hand, Superman should then travel back in time to the day before the crash and present the report to the airline and let them replace the doomed plane and fix any issues it may have had.

Get Green Lantern to make a giant baseball glove?

Byrne’s Superman attempted to work around this by giving him “tactile telekinesis” which was supposed to prevent airplane fuselages from tearing in half when he saves them. That seems to take a bit away from Superman’s ability a bit I suppose, but it’s an explanation.

Damn! I was going to suggest this. Flying completely around the world in reverse, of course.

Whichever is most dramatically appropriate. Sometimes he grabs it by the stub of broken-off wing and flies it to the airport; other times he grabs it by the top and carries it, or supports it from below. He’s even been known to rip both wings off so it plummets straight down to the earth, then flies to the nose-cone and lifts it from there, then gently sets it down once he’s reached the Earth.

The front wheel is, certainly, able to support the whole weight of the plane. If it was going slow enough, he could ask the pilot to lower the wheels, and then grab the front wheel to push and guide the craft. Otherwise, he could just pull the cover off and grab it while it’s still tucked in.

He should do whatever the plot demands of him. Hopefully with as little thought to reality as possible.

Superman has an aura of invulnerability that extends around any large object he picks up. It would hold the plane in one piece while he carries it. He could even lift an ocean liner out of the water by pulling on the rail around the stern. He can even straighten or tilt the Tower of Pisa without it collapsing.

Right–a world in which Superman can exist has already taken the laws of physics and set them on fire. No reason why a plane would crumple when supported by pressure on a tiny area.

But given his speed, couldn’t he just fly superfast around the plane and pat it gently in like 10 billion places, each pat slowing it down just a little bit?

If he does that then Lois dies. Which is no big loss as far as I’m concerned, but he’ll probably try something else.

It depends on just why the plane is crashing, of course. But in most crash situations, the plane is still going to be generating at least some lift, so he won’t need to support all of the weight at one point.

All of the wheels combined can certainly do it, but I don’t see how you conclude that the front wheel alone can.

Swallow a lake…spit it on the ground…freeze it with super breath…chop it up at super speed and turn it into snow.

Or find enough red kryptonite to turn him into a giant and catch the plane

Superman can only drink so much, though. I doubt his stomach could hold several millions of gallons of water. I have seen him (in the comics, of course) fly in a circle at super speed and create a vortex that lifted water from a lake and deposited it somewhere else.