23 Miles Of Free Fall - Live Webcast Of Felix Baumgartner's Third World Record Attempt From The Edge Of Space

Tyler Durden's picture

Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner's previous two attempts to set a world record in freefalling from an altitude of 23 miles, or from "the edge of space" were aborted in the last minute due to heavy winds. In a few minutes, the daredevil will find out if third time will be the charm for gravity to finally not be denied. Watch the live webcast below and find out in an hour when the process is officially scheduled to begin.

A step by step process of what the key events are if the jump is allowed to proceed:

Weather conditions permitting, well-known daredevil Felix Baumgartner will enter a six-foot-diameter pressurized capsule and ascend to 120,000 feet via a high altitude balloon. When he hits the right altitude, he'll begin his jump.


Within about 40 seconds he will have accelerated enough to break the sound barrier — also a new record, in addition to the altitude. As he falls he enters thicker air that could have a deadly effect; it could cause him to suddenly spin out of control and lose consciousness. If that happens he risks being unable to deploy his parachute.


If all goes well, his free fall should last an incredible five and a half minutes, and he will deploy his chute at 5,000 feet.


Should his attempt be success it will set the new world record for a high altitude jump. The current record was set in 1960 by United States Air Force Col. Joseph Kittinger, who is now serving as a consultant on Baumgartner's attempt.

Courtesy of Reuters, here is a sampling of some of the risks and hazards associated with attempting a record 23 miles of free fall.

  • Colliding shock waves, triggered by a human body moving faster than the speed of sound, could hit with the force of an explosion, though the risk of this is much less likely in the stratosphere where the air is extremely thin.
  • The low-pressure environment could cause Baumgartner to go into a flat spin. If a spin lasts for too long, he could lose consciousness and injure his eyes, brain and cardiovascular system.
  • Exposure to vacuum, even for a short period of time, could cause Baumgartner's blood literally to boil. The condition, known as ebullism, causes fluids in the body to turn to gas.
  • Gas seeping into the body due to a relatively rapid exposure to low pressure can cause decompression sickness, or "the bends."
  • As pressure decreases, trapped gas in the body can cause ear blockages, dizziness and acute tooth, sinus and gastrointestinal pain. When decompression is sudden, lungs can over-inflate and collapse. A gas bubble in an artery could stop blood flow.
  • Extremely cold temperatures pose a threat to Baumgartner and his equipment. Excessive heat from the sun is also a risk.
  • Ultraviolet radiation is more than 100,000 times as strong at 120,000 feet, where Baumgartner plans to begin his jump, as it is at ground level, but Baumgartner should have a very short exposure time.
  • Wind shear could make Baumgartner nauseous and could destroy his balloon.
  • A breach in Baumgartner's protective spacesuit or the accidental deployment of a parachute are considered the biggest safety concerns

And finally, for the visual learners, an infographic of all you need to know, via Space.com:

Find out how a record-breaking supersonic sky dive from space works, in this SPACE.com infographic.

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Will Felix be dropping 100 dollar bills from his capsule?

Harlequin001's picture

That must be one big fucking crane...

SafelyGraze's picture

that cannot possibly be the actual lunar surface.

if you look closely, you can see evidence of green botanical material.

redpill's picture

Finally someone that might beat the major currencies of the world in a race to the bottom.  On second though, nahh..

Stackers's picture

I jumped from Space and all I got was this stupid shirt

francis_sawyer's picture

 Today's 'Socioeconomic' Metaphor = An attempt at a FREEFALL world record... How appropriate...

machineh's picture

... and the winner's prize is a C-note with a disappearing Liberty bell.

francis_sawyer's picture

The thing was'cracked' to begin with... Now it's just gone altogether...

resurger's picture

you didnt jump, some one else did!

salvatorem's picture

The dude is taking the $100 bills with him, and then he's gonna announce that he's really D.B. Cooper

vast-dom's picture

OT MUST READ: Former FDIC chairwoman writes new book, and says, " “The balance of power has shifted too far in favor of large financial interests in Washington,” she said in the interview. “The bailouts, and the quantitative easing that continues, have overwhelmingly benefited the upper classes. Workers, homeowners, small businesses have by and large been left to fend for themselves.” "




JuliaS's picture

Roughly 1h 37m into the launch the narrator tells us the pilot canot control the ascend, because it's merely a balloon. The only thing he can do is drop ballast. Yet at the same time they show the capsule interior full of displays, buttons and switches.

Makes me think of the Fed chairman Ben Bernanke. Surrounded by a fancy looking array of controls, yet they all do one single thing.

Now tell me, Ben, which button controls the wind?

redpill's picture

More like which button controls gravity

CPL's picture

After 50 million plus dollars I think he might have pennies to throw to the adoring crowds.


Pretty damn cool though.  I couldn't think of a better way to spend it if you've got it.  It would be a good blow off.


"I've been to Mount St Everest."

"Oh yeah Mofo?  I've jumped from space.  Top that shit."


It's an experience that can only be followed with wine, women and song.  Even if you are poorer for it in terms of cash.

fuu's picture

His plan now is to settle down with his woman, fly Mountain S&R missions, and fight fires in the US and...Austria. The good life.

CPL's picture

You kidding me?  You seen his handbag, she's up for replacement.  It would be like those chicks that muggle onto guys going through med school.  Once the deed is done, dropped like a bad habit once the degree is in hand.  LOL!


At this point the amount of trim he'll be picking up will be insane.  Goodbye wife, hello attractive recepticle.

goldfish1's picture

Hey Nineteen
That's 'Retha Franklin
She don't remember
The Queen of Soul
It's hard times befallen
The sole survivors
She thinks I'm crazy
But I'm just growing old

Hey Nineteen
No we got nothing in common
No we can't talk at all
Please take me along
When you slide on down

The Cuervo Gold
The fine Colombian
Make tonight a wonderful thing

No we can't dance together
No we can't talk at all...

CPL's picture

You know what cures erectile disfunction in 40+ year old men.


18 year old woman.  Lather, rinse and repeat if necessary

Buckaroo Banzai's picture

As a friend of mine from Texas used to say, "our last ex-wives haven't been born yet!"

blown income's picture

"I've been to Mount St Everest."

"Oh yeah Mofo?  I've jumped from space.  Top that shit."


Priceless..  ;)

LULZBank's picture

I've been to Mount St Everest."

"Oh yeah Mofo?  I've jumped from space.  Top that shit."


"I print money."

CPL's picture

He's jumping!!


There's a dead pool open now.

UGrev's picture

When I saw him flat spinning, I thought for sure he was scrambled eggs... 

CPL's picture

Well, he didn't break any records other than rich guy in space.


oh well...again.  Pretty damn sweet.  I don't think he'll be getting a refund or anything back.

UGrev's picture

Highest jump

Highest manned baloon flight

CPL's picture


Oh yeah, missed those.  Working on the math pieces for speed and pressure while the announcer was chattering on.


v nought (t) + (a (t)^2)/2 = position

0 + 9.8 (120)^2 = 141,120 m - 141.12 km


No speed records though, damn fast.  And now repeatable.  Can't wait for the well armed and armoured version complete grenades and a platoon jumping now that the test has been accomplished.  


Because that's next.


UGrev's picture

I feel for the guy who gets the red suit, courtesy of the federation :)

_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

There are traffic jams on the Mt. Everest nowadays, I shit you not. Fucking ridiculous. 

Let's see how long before it gets crowded in space.

CPL's picture

Rich lawyers being shot into space is fine with me.  We'll make a missle defense sheld out of them.


13thWarrior's picture

I am Spaceship Ben and this is Jackass!

old naughty's picture

He made it. New record holder.

Xue's picture

''Will Felix be dropping 100 dollar bills from his capsule?''


It's impossible. He is Austrian.

JuliaS's picture

Indeed. The capsule must be made of solid gold.

monkeyboy's picture

I really hope this doesn't turn into an Icarus moment for Felix/Red Bull/et.al. That would be a very shitty omen me thinks.

In saying that Felix has massive balls.

Gringo Viejo's picture

Meaningless diversion. Fuck him.

Darth Rayne's picture




sorry couldn't help myself. :-)

bilejones's picture

Now that he's officially the worlds greatest diver, will he be signing for Real Madrid football club?

Cassandra Syndrome's picture

Is this Red Bullish?