Felix Baumgartner Mach 1 Man Wanted to Come Back Alive

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Felix Baumgartner Mach 1 Man Wanted to Come Back Alive

Felix Baumgartner stood alone at the edge of space, poised in the open doorway of a capsule suspended above Earth and wondering if he would make it back alive.

Thirty – Nine kilometres below him, millions of people were right there with him, watching on the Internet and marvelling at the wonder of the moment. A second later, he stepped off the capsule and barrelled toward the New Mexico desert as a tiny white speck against a darkly – tinted sky.

Millions watched him breathlessly as he shattered the sound barrier and then landed safely about nine minutes later, becoming world’s first supersonic skydiver.

Baumgartner, a 43 – year – old Austrian, hit Mach 1.24, or 1,342kmph, according to preliminary data, and became the first person to reach supersonic speed without travelling in a jet or a spacecraft.

The capsule he jumped from had reached an altitude of 128,100 feet ( 39km ) above Earth, carried by a 55 – storey ultra – thin helium balloon. Landing on his feet in the desert, the man known as “Fearless Felix” lifted his arms in victory to the cheers of jubilant friends. General Studies Question Bank CD

Among them was his mother, Eva Baumgartner, who was overcome with emotion, crying. “Sometimes we have to get really high to see how small we are,” an exuberant Baumgartner told reporters after the jump. “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,” he said. “The only thing you want is to come back alive.”

It was part scientific wonder, part daredevil reality show, with the live – streamed event instantly capturing the world’s attention.

The event happened without a network broadcast in the US, though organizers said more than 40 television stations in 50 countries carried the live feed. Instead, millions flocked online, drawing more than 8 million simultaneous views to a YouTube live stream at its peak, YouTube officials said.