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10-14-2012, 08:36 PM #1
Felix Baumgartner breaks the speed of sound falling 128,000 feet
Extreme athlete Felix Baumgartner dropped to Earth from more than 24.5 miles in the air in a historic fall from the edge of space in his attempt to become the world's first supersonic skydiver.
Baumgartner stepped out of a capsule pulled by a 55-story helium balloon after it had reached the height of 127,718 feet.
As he softly landed on Earth with the help of a parachute about five minutes later, Baumgartner raised his hands in victory.
'Sometimes we have to get really high to see how small we are,' an exuberant Baumgartner told reporters outside mission control, shortly after the jump. He was expected to offer more remarks at an afternoon news conference.
Baumgartner was expected to hit a speed of 690 mph before activating his parachute about 5,000 above the ground in southeastern New Mexico.
A member of his team told CNN that he achieved a speed of 833 mph, or mach 1.24 - breaking the speed of sound.
Before sunrise the former Austrian paratrooper's crew began unpacking the 30 million cubic foot helium balloon to hoist the capsule that will carry him 23 miles up in the sky.
10-14-2012, 10:02 PM #2