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Felix Baumgartner is determined to jump from the edge of space and break the speed of sound! Baumgartner’s aim is to skydive from a pressurized capsule attached to a helium balloon at a height of over 120,000 feet, free falling for over 5 minutes in temperatures that could fall below -70°C. The jump will make him the first person ever to break the sound barrier unaided, meaning his body will have to withstand the force of a sonic boom. Wearing a space suit is crucial to his survival. If a breach of the suit occurs, some of the possible risks will include collapsing lungs, boiling blood, and eyes popping out of his head. Training and long-term preparations have been absolutely necessary.

Born in Salzburg in 1969, Felix Baumgartner began skydiving at the age of 16 and optimized his skills as part of the Austrian military’s demonstration and competition team. In 1988 he began performing skydiving exhibitions for Red Bull. Felix’s adventurous spirit and Red Bull’s company concept appeared to be the perfect match and they’ve collaborated ever since. The Austrian Daredevil holds various world records in base jumping including the world record lowest base jump from Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (95 feet) in 1999, and the world record  base jump from the world’s tallest building in Taipei, the 101 Tower in Taiwan (1,669 feet) in 2007. In 2003 he crossed the channel from Dover, England to Calais, France as the first winged freefall crossing of the English Channel. However, Baumgartner’s achievements don´t stop there. The list goes on for quite a while. To challenge himself in the most possible way he is pushing himself to the limit of physical boundaries. With a team of the world’s top scientists, engineers, and doctors behind him, he’s ready to rewrite history and advance aeronautical research by base jumping from the egde of space.

Depending on various conditions the earliest option for the world record jump is 11.30am (MDT)/ 17.30pm (GMT) TODAY.

Stay updated with the preparation for the upcoming event.

Red Bull is covering the base jump LIVE here.

Words by Georgia Reeve
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