Cap's shield is made of vibranium which absorbs energy. Surely, it can't store an infinite amount of energy so it must then convert this in some other form (possibly heat?).

How does it achieve this? Have we ever seen the shield bleeding of this excess energy in some fashion?

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    – Valorum
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 23:17
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    I always assumed that the energy that comes in the front of the shield is radiated out to the sides which is what appears to happen when Thor hits the shield in Avengers Assemble youtube.com/watch?v=Y1g-B8BJzwc (2:46) How it is handled in the comics I have no idea.
    – Jaydee
    Commented May 1, 2015 at 8:39
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    And in Age of Ultron this is used as a weapon (Thor hits the shield with his hammer and the sound (?) waves knock out the enemies). Commented May 1, 2015 at 9:09
  • thanks jaydee and eikr but what i know is that vibranium stores mechanical energy converted as in bonds and if more mechanical energy is given to it, it explodes, and that's what happened to the shield in avengers 2. but i am talking about heat energy directly on to shield. Commented May 3, 2015 at 1:03
  • one more thing ...you all know 'the bus' of S.H.I.E.L.D. , it's interrogation room was made of carbide-vibranium, so that means thor can be locked in it or not? think.... Commented May 3, 2015 at 1:04

2 Answers 2


If we're talking about the Cinematic Universe, it's a bit fuzzy. Vibranium is supposed to store mechanical/kinetic energy, and we do see that when applicable - stopping bullets & energy weapon blasts in the First Avenger, absorbing a fall in Winter Soldier, et cetera. Pew pew pew

However, there's also scenes where it... doesn't work like that. The most common are the multiple use of ricochets in all of the films (No vibrations = no ricochet!), but the one closest to what you're asking is from the original Avengers film, where Iron Man & Cap combo the shield to mow down several Chitauri using the shield as a deflection tool... which also wouldn't work if the vibranium was absorbing the incoming energy.

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That's my guess from my misspent youth in physics - Vibranium, through its atomic structure, converts kinetic energy from impacts into kinetic energy as vibrations at a very high rate of efficiency, and this dissipates from the metal as sound waves ( Vibrations in air, hence the name ).

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