Imagine, for a moment, that there's no air resistance (It's OK, I will come back to that one).

Also imagne the wheels are perfect and have no friction at their bearings and are of negligible mass.

Leave the plane's engines off and start the conveyor. No force acts on the plane so it says still.

For what it's worth, set the conveyor going the other way and the plane will still stay still.

OK so, without friction or air resistance, the plane "doesn't know the conveyor is there" . If you fire up the engines, it will take off just the same as usual.

OK if there is some friction at the wheel bearings then the conveyor moving backwards (from the passengers' point of view) will tend to push the plane back.

If you could get the belt moving fast enough, this friction would drag the plane backwards just as hard as the engines push it forwards so the plane could be made to stand still. (until the wheel bearings overheated and melted).

OK, now lets put air resistance back into the quetion.

The only way to stop the plane taking off is to have the belt move backwards much faster than the plane usually moves forwards (the wheel bearings are not that bad, so it would take a lot of speed to provide as much force as the engines do). If you do that it will drag a lot of air along with it. This air will be dragged past the wings amd cause lift so the plane starts to rise. At that point the drag on the wheels is greatly reduced and the plane flys off anyway.

Unless anyone can show me a flaw in that I'm afraid you might have to talk amongst yourselves 'till the 27th.

Here are a couple of questions you might want to think about.

Can you stay upright riding a bicyle on a treadmill?

If so, why,

If not, why not?

And, more related to the original question.

Imagine you are in a plane- to give a nice concrete example let's say one of these

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airbus_A380OK, you are about to take off, the engines are running at full pelt, the airstrip is level and, for the sake of this question, the air is at standard temperature and pressure (in effect the runway is at sea level), the plane is fully loaded and the runway is flat.

At the moment you take the brakes off to start moving, at what rate is power transfered from the engines to the plane to move it forward?