Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication

On 14th October 2012, the history was created by Felix Baumgartner by jumping from 24 miles above the ground. This record-setting jump has made news around the world. It took five years to plan this Red Bull Stratos mission but only 10 minutes to actually happen. The point from where he jumped is being described as the “edge of space”. He was poised in open doorway of a capsule above the Earth and millions of people were with him watching on the Internet. He became the first skydiver to complete the highest altitude skydive in history. It was the longest free-fall and has been achieved with the fastest speed ever. He spends 2.5 hours ascending through atmosphere. He was spinning continuously at a certain R.P.M for 10 to 20 seconds that was very fearful because this spin can bring blood through the eyeballs but luckily Felix was able to gain control over his body.


The world-record speed reached by Baumgartner while falling was 833.9 mph. He was plummeted at 119,846 feet before deploying the parachute; it is also a world record. 40 television stations and Discovery channel showed the jump live. There were 8 million people tuned in to watch the jump online on You Tube and broke the record set by the London Summer Olympics. Now, this Man is known as “Fearless Felix” for landing on his feet after jumping from the sky. He is the first person to reach the supersonic speed without travelling in a jet or a spacecraft.


This 43-year old Austrian was hugged by his mother and father, just 10 minutes after his jump. His girlfriend also jumped up wrapping her legs on him. Felix said to one of the news reporter that “travelling faster than sound is hard to describe because you don’t feel it, with no reference points, you don’t know how fast you travel”. He was wearing a pressurized suit to prevent him from feeling the rushing air and the loud noise made by him while jumping. It was really a wonder jump and also a daredevil reality show with the live-stream to capture the world’s attention. This news spread throughout the world in no time because of the Internet.


Felix had opened his parachute at 5,000 feet before reaching to land, as per to the plan. He had broken the record of highest manned-balloon flight but failed to break Kittinger’s 5 minute and 35 second longest free fall record. This skydiver was timed at 4 minutes and 20 seconds in free fall. His photo of kneeling on the ground was posted on Facebook and got 216,000 likes, 10,000 comments and more than 29,000 shares in less than 40 minutes. Really this dive was more than just a stunt and NASA is eager to improve its blueprints for future spacesuits.


The Red Bull Startos mission team also involved Joe Kittinger, who first tried to break the sound barrier from 19.5 miles up in 1960 and reaching the speed of 614 mph. Kittinger was inside mission control and radioed to Felix at around 100,000 foot mark that “Our guardian angel will take care of you”. As per to my point of view, the jump by felix is really amazing but then to nothing as compared to the Project Manhigh and Project Excelsior jumps. The Excelsior jump at 107,000+ feet made by Joseph Kittinger was the gnarliest thing a human has ever done. True, Kittinger has done this in 59 with the equipment that was available and not even knowing if a human could survive that free fall.

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