The Repulsors are mounted in the palms of the armor's hands and draw power directly from Tony's Arc Reactor. Originally meant as a way to stabiize the armor's flight and provide extra agility, Tony found that by focusing their energy he could create powerful energy blasts to use against his enemies. The repulsor effect is created by taking excess electrons and turning them into muons which can penetrate deep into atomic matter before being fed to the hands and chest piece of any Iron Man suit. The suit then takes in air through the suit and runs it to any of the emiters. An electric current running through the suit's gauntlets creates a small amount of plasma which ignite the energy for projection.
When used for propulsion, multiple repulsors are able to attain flight through correct and maintained flight stabilization. 1% thrust allows Tony to hover smoothly, while other percentages give less-stable flight unless Tony can use the flight features on his suit and redirect his path.
There are two types. As seen in Age of Ultron and Civil War, he can either utilize the non-lethal type where the repulsors have a milder, concussive effect, i.e. knocking someone back, such as the scene where Iron Man shoots it at Falcon. Or he can use the lethal type, which looks like a laser, and can crack through concrete. Depending on the beam's concentration, it can be used to as cutting tool. Stark utilized a small, concentrated repulsor beam to cut open New York's underwater power lines to attach a device that disconnected the Stark Tower from the city's power grid. There is also a penetrating type of blast utilized by many armors that contain a Unibeam on the chest of the armor which Stark used to kill Eric Savin on board Air Force One using the Mark 42 armor in Iron Man 3.
Repulsor technology was created by Stark Industries before the events of the movie and utilized in the Jericho Missile system. This technology was then applied as the method of propulsion for Tony Stark's "Pilot without a plane;" the Mark II suit. After the creation of the Mark III suit, Tony discovered that the hand-mounted flight stabilizers had offensive capabilities and employed them against the Ten Rings to destroy a weapon's depot and later against Obadiah Stane in the Iron Monger suit.
Fighting each other, Stark and Rhodey learn that if two suits fire their repulsors at each other, it will create a massive explosion in between. During the final battle with Ivan Vanko, Rhodey, in his War Machine armor and Stark, in the Mark VI, defeat Vanko by firing their repulsors at each other with Vanko in the middle, creating an explosion that disables Vanko, but doesn't kill him. He subsequently self-destructs himself and his drones.
When his house comes under attack, Stark dons his prototype Mark 42 suit and uses its repulsors to defend his house, unsuccessfully. He later uses a portable repulsor to blast Eric Savin, which under normal circumstances would have killed him, but he survives due to the increased healing factor induced by the Extremis serum.
This is apparently only a one-use repulsor, though, as Stark discards it afterwards. When Stark summons his suit, the right gauntlet equipped with a repulsor is the first piece to arrive and he uses it and a machine gun to kill the guards holding him hostage. During the final battle, all the suits of the Iron Legion use their repulsors against the Extremis Soldiers, ultimately killing them all.
While rescuing the President, Rhodey uses one of Iron Patriot's repulsors to cause the armor, himself and the President to swing to safety from an explosion. Detecting that Pepper Potts has Extremis, the Mark VIII suit targets her with its repulsors, but she destroys it by punching it through the arc reactor. Pepper then takes its right repulsor and blasts a missile she kicked in front of Aldrich Killian, creating an explosion that kills him.
In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, the Helicarrier's flight system is powered by Stark's Repulsor technology.
- The Repulsors were based off on the technology with the same name in the comics.
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