In Avengers: Age of Ultron, we see that;

Scarlet Witch is able to manipulate Vibranium, as she rips Ultron's Vibranium body apart with her powers.

However, earlier in the movie she attacks Captain America, who successfully blocks her attacks with his shield.

Is this an error in the film, or is Captain America's shield made up of more than just Vibranium?

  • 5
    Er, wasn't he not made of Vibranium? Ultron wanted to use it for his perfect body, but was interrupted...
    – Izkata
    May 19, 2015 at 23:26

3 Answers 3


In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the shield that Captain America uses is made of Vibranium, a departure from the comics (in which it is made of a Vibranium-Adamantium alloy) due to licensing and rights issues between 20th Century Fox and Marvel Studios.

Although this could be an error in the film, it wouldn't be hard to hand wave away. In the comics, Scarlet Witch is unstable at the best of time, and her control over her powers is strongly varied by her mental health and emotional state at the time of using them. As such, we could easily say that when she attacked Captain America, her power was limited by her relatively stable nature at the time. However;

When she attacks Ultron, she is feeling a whole range of emotions from fury to fear to sadness, after learning of the loss of her brother, Quicksilver.

This unstable state may have made her more powerful, and as such better able to manipulate Vibranium.


It's important to note that Wanda did NOT manipulate Vibranium directly. In the scene you describe, remember that she

telekinetically pulled Ultron's "heart" out of his chest.

In this case, the object she was telekinetically moving and the surface it had to move through were BOTH made of Vibranium. Apparently in this case, object A simply proved more durable than object B. Also, note that a solid chunk of material will almost always prove more solid/durable than a thin layer of the same material.

Unlike in the comics, where Wanda can manipulate the Laws of Physics via "Chaos Magic", in the MCU her official power is only that telepathy/telekinesis. The MCU version of Scarlet Witch cannot manipulate materials or make impossible things happen - she can only move existing objects and affect the mind.

  • 1
    I don't know that we can say that both objects were made of vibranium. In the comics, usually Ultron will have a shell of durable material, with more mundane internal materials.
    – user1027
    May 19, 2015 at 15:00
  • @Keen you may be right. On-screen, we're never even told that his shell is Vibranium, although that's the implication. However, since Wanda's official MCU power is telepathy/telekinesis (and not Chaos Magic/Probability), she would only be able to move something - not manipulate the metal itself (other than moving it). Therefore, the only way we can explain what we see on-screen is that she moves one Vibranium object against another, and the second one gives/ruptures.
    – Omegacron
    May 19, 2015 at 15:23

The answer is found here. Thaddeus answered it.

EDIT: as i state above this has been answered by Thaddeus in a similar question. Here is his answer ( without the wonderful pictures he almost always provides )

Captain America's shield in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Earth-199999) is NOT indestructible; far from it. Created by Howard Stark from a vibranium alloy, the MCU shield is very tough but nowhere near as durable as Captain America's shield in the comics. With sufficient force or continued bombardment, a shield composed of only vibranium can be destroyed as the vibranium destabilizes.

•Vibranium is not as hard or dense as Adamantium, but it is still very durable. It is also easier to make objects out of, such as the mesh costume the Black Panther wears. Vibranium absorbs more impact than adamantium.

•The apparent observable vibratory rate of the molecules of the Vibranium itself does not noticeably increase when the Vibranium absorbs mechanical energy. The outside vibratory energy is stored within the bonds between the molecules making up the Vibranium.

•As a result, a chunk of Vibranium which had absorbed a considerable amount of vibratory energy would be exceedingly hard to demolish. If enough force were were applied to this chunk to smash it, the Vibranium would explode, releasing much of the absorbed energy.

•Captain America's MCU shield is composed singularly from a vibranium-metallic alloy. Durable, tough, damage resistant, capable of taking a hit from even Mjolnir, but far weaker than the comic version of Cap's shield.

•In the comic universe, Captain America's shield is made from an Adamantium-Vibranium alloy which on Earth is considered to be one of the most durable and nigh-indestructible things ever made on Earth. Attempts to replicate the nature of this Proto-Adamantium shield led to the creation of True Adamantium, the second most indestructible material on Earth.

•In 1985′s Captain America #303, we meet MacLain again, who, we learn, created Captain America’s shield…and yes, in MacLain notes we learn the shield is composed of adamantium/something-something/vibranium/iron alloy. We are never told what the X-element which allowed proto-adamantium to exist.

  • 2
    These are different questions, even though the titles are similar. Juyaku is specifically asking why SW could destroy Ultron's vibranium and not Cap's.
    – Shamshiel
    May 19, 2015 at 11:36

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