At Virginia Skydiving Center, our tandem skydives start from 13,500-14,000 feet above the ground. That sounds like a lot – and it is – but in miles it’s only a little over 2.5. So, multiply that by 10 and you get what Felix Baumgartner will attempt to do: a 25 mile skydive in which he expects to break the sound barrier.
For anyone wondering how far 25 miles above Earth is, it’s kind of hard to picture. However, you may have heard of the stratosphere, and 25 miles is right in the middle of that. Scientists have structured our atmosphere into 5 sections and the stratosphere is the second closest to Earth. That might not sound too crazy, but in an interview with CNN, Baumgartner said that from only 18 miles above the surface, he could see the our planet’s edge, much like you might see in films about space exploration. Technically, the stratosphere is Space, since he needs a specialized suit to maintain homeostasis.
So, while you might not be able to do a 25 mile skydive at Virginia Skydiving Center, we wanted to let you know to keep track of Baumgartner, because he might in fact be the first human to travel at supersonic speed, eliminating or exceeding what we know as “terminal velocity,” or the moment where our fall to Earth stops accelerating. That’s all scientific mumbo-jumbo that sounds complex, but the truth is… it’s just really cool.
Imagine traveling a mile in 5 seconds. That’s what Baumgartner will accomplish.
Make sure to check the news and take a look at his test jump footage. And, if any of this interests you, you don’t have to be a daredevil to skydive. Contact Virginia Skydiving Center for more information!