Skip to comments.Basejumper Felix Baumgartner to break sound barrier with leap from the edge of space
Posted on 02/07/2012 11:05:54 AM PST by DeoVindiceSicSemperTyrannis
Basejumper Felix Baumgartner will attempt to break the speed of sound by freefalling from the edge of space, nearly 23 miles up, above Roswell.
It is the ultimate in parachute jumps: from the edge of space, Felix Baumgartner will leap from a balloon, plummeting to the ground 120,000 feet below.
Currently preparing in New Mexico, Baumgartner - who has previously made headlines with the lowest base jump ever recorded, off the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and for crossing the English Channel in freefall - was calmness personified as he explained what the incredible leap will involve.
He said: "We're going up to 120,000 feet in a pressurised capsule hanging underneath a helium balloon and at altitude the balloon will level off.
"I'm going to step off that capsule, fall down for a couple of minutes and hopefully I'm going to break the speed of sound."
To be more precise, after 35 seconds he will expect to break the sound barrier, and finally, at 5,000 feet he will deploy a parachute and hopefully land safely on the ground.
During his 10-minute journey to earth the Austrian will travel at more than 690 miles per hour inside a special suit, which must protect him from temperatures as low as -94 degrees F.
He will rely on its oxygen tanks as the air is too thin to breathe and hope that the sheer force of the fall does not make him blackout.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
Hope is not a plan. Although that little fact has become obscured since about 2008.
So, he is going to go from 0 to 690mph in 35 secounds?!
When he breaks the sound barrier. Every organ in his body will explode.
Almost sounds like something out of the book “Starship Troopers” where combat drops were made from space in personal aeroshells.
Yep. What a loon.
It would be very surprising if this idiot were to survive...
The speed of sound is not constant. It is faster in denser air and slower in less dense air. Basically, that 690MPH figure is only at low elevations...much slower than that at very high altitudes.
Havn’t you ever noticed at high elevations, like on a mountain, you see things before you hear the sound they make? Like someone dribbling a basket ball say 35 yards away at elevations over 5000feet. You hear the ball hit the pavement about the same time you see the ball half way between the person’s hand and the pavement.
Yep ... 32 ft/s/s adds up.
He just jumped to the top of the Darwin Waiting List.
With all the new technology, I don't know what's taken it so long for somebody to try it again.
-— Hope is not a plan. Although that little fact has become obscured since about 2008-—
Works in politics. In engineering, not so much.
This was done before a half century ago:
CAPT (later COL) Joseph Kittinger jumped from something like 102 kft during Project Excelsior ... he used a drogue chute to prevent spinning. This also prevented him going supersonic.
There should be cheaper ways to apply Darwin Awards...
Been done before... Not sure that guy tried to break the sound barrier, but he did survive the trip.
Joe Kittinger has held the record for over 50 years at over 102,000 feet. He did three high altitude test jumps to see if a drogue chute would stop high altitude ejection flat spin and almost died on one of the jumps. The final one, his pressure suit failed and his hand froze at the minus 94 degree temperature experienced.
If this guy goes about 16% higher, but 50 years later, I still think Kittinger has the bigger brass.
What kind of aerodynamic structure will he be in to protect against friction ripping him apart?
Teachers Union reply: "People today are so much smarter and better educated! That's why no one tries stuff like this!"
Conservative reply: "People today lack courage! Years ago, Americans thrived on bold action!"
X-gamer reply: "Dude! Can I use my wingsuit?"
They are claiming that 680 MPH IS the speed of sound at 120k ft. I’m not sure if that is correct or not. I know that the speed of sound is about 760 mph at sea level.
He had a small drogue chute and did not exceed the speed of sound.
What I would be concerned about is when he breaks the sound barrier the dynamic forces on his body will change such that he becomes an unstable falling object and then experience G forces that may render him unconscious.
I wear a parachute when I fly my glider. I sure as hell am not stepping outside unless the glider is total uncontrollable.
I’m obviously no scientist, and I wonder why terminal velocity (120 mph or something) doesn’t come into play here if it’s supposedly “terminal”. I mean, he isn’t using power to drop, is he?
I’m confused. Help!
There’s no terminal velocity in space. Thinner air = higher terminal velocity.
On the way, he (Kittinger) became the first man to exceed the speed of sound -- without a plane.
I think you reach speeds in excess of TV just by going into a delta position arms to sides.
Terminal velocity depends on air resistence and gravity.
120 mph is only good for 10,000 feet or so.
Terminal velocity from stationary in space is 7 miles per second = escape velocity, which is the same thing in reverse if there is no air.
Thanks! Does that mean he’ll start slowing down as the atmosphere gets more dense?
Man that gives me the heebee jeebees just looking at that picture!
Is it too late to add this guy to my “Dead Pool?”
Can he hold off attempting this until next January so I can put him on my Celebrity Dead Pool list for 2013?
Dang, I knew I should have read all the posts before posting a comment... ;-)
This is definitely a Special Darwin Experience! Will we get to see Video of the explosion that will win him the Darwin Award of 2012???????
The speed of sound is dependent on air temperature.
He won't reach that speed.
Based on wind resistance, the terminal velocity of a skydiver in a belly-to-earth (ie:face down) free-fall position is about 122 mph.
This velocity is the limiting value of the acceleration process because the effective forces on the body balance each other more and more closely as the terminal velocity is approached.
In this example, a speed of 50% of terminal velocity is reached after only about 3 seconds, while it takes 8 seconds to reach 90%, 15 seconds to reach 99% and so on.
Higher speeds can be attained if the skydiver pulls in his or her limbs. In this case, the terminal velocity increases to about 200 mph which is almost the terminal velocity of the Peregrine Falcon diving down on its prey.
The same terminal velocity is reached for a typical .30-06 bullet dropping downwardswhen it is returning to earth having been fired upwards or dropped from a toweraccording to a 1920 U.S. Army Ordnance study.
Competition speed skydivers fly in the head down position and reach even higher speeds. The current world record is 614 mph by Joseph Kittinger, set at high altitude where the lesser density of the atmosphere decreased drag.
So this guy hopes to break the current world record by 76 mph? The physics don't support it.
And if he does, as you say, he's dead meat.
That is always the case, noticeable at significant distances.
The speed of light is always going to be far greater than the speed of sound, at any elevation.
not only will he slow down, he will heat up.
Altitude *IS* a factor. The higher up you go in the column of air, the lower the weight of the atmosphere above it.
When you are over a mile up, it is noticeable at much less than significant distances.
He is free falling, not rocket propelled. He is not going to experience more than 1 G. Gravity and friction are the only forces involved.
During de-acceleration he may have greater force through his harness, but before.
It has been done before, so it is survivable.
That sounds about right.
If you want to see what it is like to drop from 94,000+ feet watch this video.
I think what would be a fun project to do is make an R/C skydiving dummy that you would drop from a balloon. Once it gets into range pop the chute and guide it back for a landing.
What an idiot.
I hope he enjoys breaking the sound barrier before deploying his chute. It will probably be the last thing he ever experiences except for frictional heating.
“Cap Troopers Rule!” - Johnny Rico
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