Fabulous Felix is (FINALLY) about to make his freefall from 120,000 feet!

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Space suit with helmetAustrian Felix Baumgartner is making an INCREDIBLE leap into the record books today. In fact, as I write this he isย  headed up to the jump spot to do his record-setting supersonic freefall from 120,000 feet… that’s 23 miles up and puts him right at the edge of outer space!

Felix arrived around 2:30 AM to start preparing. After delaying things for weather a couple of times around 11:30 or so East Coast US time Felix, clothed in his special-made space suit, climbed into his custom designed capsule. The capsule is attached to the most enormous helium balloon you’ll EVER see in your lifetime. Were talking a 55-story high-altitude balloon here folks. Together the capsule and balloon combined are taller than Seattle’s Space Needle!

Felix’s Red Bull Stratos team launched him mere minutes ago on his approximate two hour long climb around 1000 feet per minute to the very edge of space. At around 1:30 PM Eastcoast (US) time he’s expected to reach what they call “float” to make the spectacular leap.

Estimates are that he will reach the speed of sound within 40 seconds of jumping. The first supersonic human being…a real live superhero.

Be sure to tune in to see him make the record-breaking jump on the Red Bull Stratus page.

In the meantime here are some stills of this historic event that I grabbed from the live feed along the way to keep you occupied. I’ll add some more as the jump progresses. (Click on them for a bit bigger sizes.)

Update: The numbers still need to be confirmed but preliminary numbers say that Felix reached Mach 1.24. That’s 833.9 miles per hour…373 meters per second. And he was in free fall was for 4 minutes and 20 seconds

[Clicky click down down there on continue reading for more pics.]

Reached float doing egress checklist.

Opening door.

And we are off!

 

Home!

Colonel Joe Kittinger, who broke the record in August 16, 1960, sits next to new record holder Felix Baumgartner at the press conference. Preliminary numbers say that Felix reached Mach 1.24.