Posted Friday, March 16, 2012, at 5:27 PM
Photo by Jay Nemeth/Red Bull via Getty Images
Daredevils and risk-takers, the gauntlet has been thrown … from 13-miles up.
Felix Baumgartner, the 42-year-old who plans to break the speed of sound with a jump from the stratosphere later this summer, completed his first test this week, skydiving in a space suit from 13 miles up in the sky—about 5 miles higher that a jumbo jet usually flies.
Baumgartner pulled off this high-flying stunt by heading aloft in his custom designed Red Bull Stratos capsule attached to a 100-foot-wide helium balloon. In a fully pressurized jump suit, he launched himself into a free fall that lasted nearly four minutes and propelled him to speeds of over 360 miles per hour.
The high-flying act is just a dress rehearsal for Baumgartner's ultimate goal: to jump from an altitude of 23 miles, a free fall that will take him past Mach 1. That leap would beat a previous record held by U.S. Air Force Captain Joe Kittinger, who jumped from nearly 20 miles up in 1960. OK, dude, put a diving board on that Red Bull Capsule and a kiddy pool on the ground, and we’re talking business.
Video produced by Paca Thomas