I understand that the earth's yellow sun gives Kryptonian an extra boost but why can they shoot lasers out of their eye? What kind of eye structure will support this kind of energy output and not damage it in the process?

Wouldn't the eye beam energy eventually run out if they keep it up?

3 Answers 3


It's not called lasers but it is known as Heat Vision.

Due to Photonucleic Effect Kryptonians are able to release large amounts of the solar energy stored in their cells as heat (Presumably, as infra-red light) via their eyes in focused beams.

In most depictions, Heat Vision has been shown as a solid red beam. However, in Smallville and Superman Returns, heat vision was pictured as beams of heat distortions in the air-- that is, the beams themselves are invisible, but their intense heat causes the air to ripple and shimmer.

In other works, "invisible" heat vision means that the beams are relatively low power and is sometimes used by Superman in a discreet manner as Clark Kent. In the later seasons of Smallville, the beams become solid orange, implying that the appearance changed because Clark has become more powerful as he ages. - superman.wikia.com


Superman has heat vision.

He can direct infrared light at targets by looking at them, and heat them until it melts.


heat vision as a separate power first appeared in Action Comics #275 (April 1961).

I don't think it has ever been explained how it works. It has been stated that Superman absorbs the sun's radiation through his skin, and the energy is stored in his cells. I assume he's able to release that energy as pure infrared light through his eyes.


In the New 52 it was shown that Heat Vision is a precursor to an even more devastating power: Solar Flare. Superman is able to release ALL the energy in his cells at once in a powerful solar flare that can decimate anything within a 10 mile radius. It first manifested when he pushed his heat vision to the breaking point. Afterwards, he was left so weakened he needed several days to return to full strenght.

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    Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 15:45

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