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Man who travelled faster than the speed of sound broke world record while free-falling from space

Man who travelled faster than the speed of sound broke world record while free-falling from space

This is truly incredible

When daredevil Felix Baumgartner was told he was attempting the impossible, he ignored it.

Instead, he went on to break the world record for travelling faster than the speed of sound. And he did so while free-falling from space.

You've got to have some guts to do this.

Felix Baumgartner travelled to 38,969.4 meters above Earth and jumped.
YouTube/Red Bull

In 2012, Baumgartner - who is an Australian skydiver - wanted to create a world record.

So, on October 14, he travelled to 38,969.4 meters above Earth and jumped, free-falling for over 36,000 meters before parachuting for the remaining distance.

Incredibly, Baumgartner set a world record for first human to break the sound barrier in free-fall, highest free-fall parachute jump and achieved the fastest speed in free-fall.

After jumping out of the aircraft, he fell at a speed of 1,357.6 km/h before gliding back down to Earth in his parachute.

You can watch the astounding moment below:

Organised by Red Bull, the whole mission took years to plan.

The first task was getting Baumgartner to space. The skydiver and his team built a helium balloon which was the size of 33 soccer pitches.

It was filled with 5,097 m³ of helium, which was enough for take off.

As the air pressure decreased, the helium expanded and filled the entire balloon of its full capacity - 850,000 m³.

They then made him a special suit to withstand the hostile conditions in space, which Baumgartner said was like 'breathing through a pillow'.

Once Baumgartner had travelled into space, his aircraft capsule was depressurised - which is essentially the point of no return once you're in space.

He perched on the side and said: "I'm going home now," before leaping back to Earth.

It took him a mere nine minutes and nine seconds.

It took him just over nine minutes.
YouTube/Red Bull

The daredevil has since spoken about what it was like when he was free-falling.

"First we got off with a beautiful launch and then we had a bit of drama with a power supply issue to my visor," he said after he landed.

"The exit was perfect but then I started spinning slowly. I thought I'd just spin a few times and that would be that, but then I started to speed up. It was really brutal at times. I thought for a few seconds that I'd lose consciousness.

"I didn't feel a sonic boom because I was so busy just trying to stabilize myself. We'll have to wait and see if we really broke the sound barrier. It was really a lot harder than I thought it was going to be."

Baumgartner broke several world records.
YouTube/Red Bull

The whole jump was broadcast to the world, but had a built-in delay, just in case something had gone wrong.

Incredibly, despite Baumgartner's achievement, one of his record's was broken two years later by computer scientist, Alan Eustace.

He fell from 41,422 meters, breaking Baumgartner's record for the highest free-fall parachute jump.

Featured Image Credit: YouTube/Red Bull

Topics: Space, Science