Felix Baumgartner has officially been awarded the Guiness World Record for the highest ever skydive from a balloon.
The 43-year-old Austrian has completed in the Red Bull Stratos project, which would see the participant dive around 128,000ft from a floating balloon and hit the ground in just under 10 minutes. Before anybody asks, Felix survived the fall and has received no injuries, but it certainly might have hurt Joseph Kittinger, the previous record-holder. According to a German interview, Baumgartner has prepared for a flight like this for 7 years, and a previous launch was even cancelled due to poor weather!
The real attempt went without a hitch, and although he was originally in an awkward, tumbling position, he recovered swiftly to reach a maximum speed of 706 miles per hour (faster than many airplanes, and the speed of sound)! He only utilised the vital parachute with a few thousand feet left and that section of the journey took just as long as the rest, a whopping 110,000ft!
The first person to congratulate his achievement was a representative of the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI) who was responsible for checking all of the statistics of the dive. A microchip installed on Felix’s skydive suit gave the most accurate data, from which it was confirmed that he broke the sound barrier, but many people believed he wouldn’t jump at all. Just moments before committing, he sat nervously on the edge of his capsule and gave a short statement: “Hello everyone … The whole world is watching now … I wish you could see what I can see … Sometimes you have to be really high up to realise how small you are.”
His equipment was specially designed by the same company who manufacture space-suits for NASA astronauts and the world-leading space experts want to be kept in the know of future developments!
But what do you think? Has his superb speed rocketed to your heart? Or was this tumble a massive fumble? Tell us your thoughts below, but remember to be logged in!
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