Skydiver will attempt to break the sound barrier

Posted Oct 9, 2012 by Tim Sandle
The daredevil Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner will attempt to become the first person to break the sound barrier. He will attempt the feat unaided by any powered vehicle. The attempt is scheduled to take place on October 9.
Picture is Felix Baumgartner before entering skydive capsule.
Picture is Felix Baumgartner before entering skydive capsule.
Felix Baumgartner will attempt this feat by jumping from a specially designed balloon at 120,000ft (36.5km). The feat will take place above Roswell, New Mexico. As he leaps, he should pick up speed rapidly, moving at almost 700 miles per hour. The entire descent is expected to last for ten minutes.
As Baumgartner gets closer to the ground he will open a parachute as he descends onto the desert surface.
Felix Baumgartner has undertaken many high-dive missions and is known for jumping off skyscrapers. Baumgartner spent time in the Austrian military where he practiced parachute jumping, including training to land on small target zones. He had planned to take the sound-barrier busting sky dive back in February, but the attempted was cancelled.
Felix Baumgartner has not, however, come any where close to the feat of free-falling through the clouds. The BBC notes that previous attempts at falling from such heights have all ended in death.
Highest ever parachute jump to date was carried out on August 16, 1960, when the US Air Force pilot Kittinger jumped from 102,800ft.
For the feat Baumgartner will be inside a special pressurized capsule. He will also wear a special full-pressure suit (a little like a 'space suit').
The jump is set to happen at 1130 local time, October 9. The weather conditions are predicted to be good.