Felix Baumgartner: Red Bull Stratos Mission

At this moment I’m watching the Discovery Channels 2 hours of coverage for Felix Baumgartners record atempt. Evidently to set many records including first mach 1 jump, highest jump, highest baloon flight and longest free fall. I’m just wondering why they don’t have some interesting characters to add commentary. Imagine a round table with a pro jumper, NASA astronuat, SR-71 pilot, high altitude expersuch as an Everest climber. What a round table that would be discussing all the problems and technology involved in a record attempt like that.

I hope it is a success. I can’t help but wonder wahy the capsule turns slowly up at such high altitude. There must be an air movement difference from top to bottom of the rig? Looking out, it’s not blue, it’s black form this altitude. That’s pretty high. 104k feet at this moment, over 31 miles. Getting clost, he’s jumping at about 120k.

UPDATE
MISSION COMPLETE!

During free fall Felix seemed to be comoplaning his visor was fogged up. I think he was wanting them to give him more altitude updates. Might have been too high to open the visor at the them time. There was no forthcomming info from MIssion Control, so he popped the chute about 10-15 seconds short of the the free fall record. However, still a super successfull record attempt with many other records sure to be moved up. At this moment, the Capsule is still floating down under it’s chute. I”m sure all this will find it’s way to the Smithsonian soon.

Red Bull Stratos site.

To my question about why the balloon turns in such a thin atmosphere, I’ve thought of my own answer. Depending on the time you were watching, the balloon was rising from 10-20 feet per second. So, in effect it’s rising vertical into a wind of that speed. The balloon being an odd shape would be effected by that much air moving around it. As it got higher and higher, the air got thinner and thinner, the balloon getting more regular in shape (less lumpy more bulb like) the balloon/capsule unit twisted about less and less. So there you go.

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