Felix Baumgartner jumps from stratosphere, breaks sound barrier

Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner, aged 43, performed a jump Sunday from 39km above the Earth’s surface using a full-pressure suit, a parachute canopy, a capsule, and a helium balloon. Baumgartner broke the sound barrier as his top speed reached 1342km/h (834 miles per hour), exceeding the speed of sound, and landed in the New Mexico desert, United States.

The jump follows several days of waiting for atmospheric winds to decrease to make sure the jump would be safe, and the capsule would not be blown away.

Felix Baumgartner, Austrian skydiver, daredevil and BASE jumper.

A balloon with 850ML (30 million cubic feet) of helium took over two hours to lift the Red Bull Stratos capsule to a 39km altitude in the stratosphere, 2km higher than expected, breaking a 1961 manned balloon record of 34.7 km (113,740 feet).

While the capsule ascended, a helmet faceplate heater failed. Exhalation fogged the faceplate and affected vision. Baumgartner proceeded with the jump anyway.

Felix Baumgartner on the Edge of Space.

Baumgartner jumped with his head down to increase speed. A quick jump was essential to minimise the risk of spinning out of control which could make the skydiver lose consciousness.

Baumgartner’s suit was equipped with devices to document the jump, including a camera. They also included tools to measure altitude, speed and location, and to report them to the mission control center.

After the successful jump, Baumgartner said, “When I was standing there on top of the world, you become so humble, you do not think about breaking records anymore, you do not think about gaining scientific data. The only thing you want is to come back alive. … Sometimes we have to get really high to see how small we are”.

The project was sponsored by Austrian Red Bull energy drinks company.

 

 

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Fernando Alonso wins 2010 Singapore Grand Prix

Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso won the FIA 2010 Singapore Grand Prix from pole position owned a day before. This became his second win in Singapore since 2008 and fourth win of the season.

Alonso was closely chased by Sebastian Vettel up to the finish line – both Red Bull’s were not able to catch Ferrari this weekend.

Fernando Alonso (2010) Image: Morio.

Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren car broke suspension after hitting Vettel’s teammate Mark Webber, racing him for third place. Another McLaren driver Jenson Button rushed to chase Webber after Hamilton found himself out of the race.

Nico Rosberg once again beat his Mercedes team mate, as the seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher finished only on 13th place. Rosberg ended up 5th.

Williams-Cosworth drivers Rubens Barrichello and Nico Hülkenberg clinched Robert Kubica 7th place for Renault.

Marina Bay Street Circuit

Pole Kubica was forced to visit Renault pits from sixth place with a tyre puncture but easily regained all but one lost positions on a set of his new tyres.

Alonso teammate Felipe Massa started from the rear of the starting grid after setting no time in the first qualifying session stopping on the circuit. Massa then done well in the race to come 9th.

Adrian Sutil owned one point for Force India finishing on the 10th place.

Mark Webber now heads the Drivers’ championship with 202 points, 11 points ahead of Fernando Alonso. Constructors’ сhampionship standings is lead by Red Bull with 383, 24 points ahead of McLaren and 67 ahead of Ferrari. Vettel’s words to his team crew about the current win by Ferrari after he saw the chequered flag were “We will get there, don’t you worry”.

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