'Fearless Felix' Fell Faster Than We Knew

Felix Baumgartner plummeted at 843.6 mph

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 4, 2013 5:31 PM CST

(Newser) – Felix Baumgartner not only broke the sound barrier, he fell faster than anyone knew. Numbers released today show that the Austrian parachutist dove headfirst from a giant helium balloon over New Mexico at 843.6 mph, not the 834 mph first estimated, the AP reports. Which means he plummeted at a record-breaking Mach 1.25, or 125% the speed of sound. But it turns out he jumped from 127,852 feet, which is 248 feet less than first thought. "He jumped from a little bit lower, but he actually went a little bit faster, which was pretty exciting," said the jump's technical director. (But Baumgartner said he didn't care about records—he just wanted to "come back alive.")

Felix Baumgartner of Austria jumps out of the capsule during the final manned flight for Red Bull Stratos on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2012.
Felix Baumgartner of Austria jumps out of the capsule during the final manned flight for Red Bull Stratos on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2012.   (AP Photo/Red Bull Stratos)
Pilot Felix Baumgartner of Austria jumps out of the capsule during the final manned flight for Red Bull Stratos.
Pilot Felix Baumgartner of Austria jumps out of the capsule during the final manned flight for Red Bull Stratos.   (AP Photo/Red Bull Stratos, File)
Felix Baumgartner prepares to jump during the first manned test flight for Red Bull Stratos over Roswell, NM.
Felix Baumgartner prepares to jump during the first manned test flight for Red Bull Stratos over Roswell, NM.   (AP Photo/Red Bull Stratos, Jay Nemeth)
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