sound barrier

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Passenger Flight Almost Reaches Supersonic Speed

Trip is 90 minutes shorter than expected

(Newser) - A British Airways flight almost reached supersonic speeds as it zoomed from New York's JFK Airport to London's Heathrow in just five hours and 16 minutes, arriving 90 minutes before it was scheduled. Its ground speed reached 745mph, just under the speed of sound at sea level, which... More »

Russian Meteor Strike Was Biggest in 100 Years

Sonic shockwave believed to have caused most of the damage

(Newser) - The meteor that struck Russia today was the largest to hit Earth since 1908, releasing hundreds of kilotons of energy, scientists tell Nature . The blast put out so much energy that it was detected by networks designed to pick up infrasound data on nuclear explosions—and indeed, the blast was... More »

'Fearless Felix' Fell Faster Than We Knew

Felix Baumgartner plummeted at 843.6 mph

(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... More »

Baumgartner: I Just Wanted to Make It Home

Out of control spin caused scary moment at start of jump

(Newser) - Jumping to Earth from 24 miles up—a feat that secured him a place in the annals of history as the first human to break the sound barrier on his own—"was harder than I expected," said Felix Baumgartner after yesterday's record-breaking skydive . Early in the jump,... More »

Baumgartner Broke the Sound Barrier

Parachute has deployed, daredevil headed back to Earth

(Newser) - In a giant leap from more than 24 miles up, a daredevil skydiver shattered the sound barrier today while making the highest jump ever—a tumbling, death-defying plunge from a balloon to a safe landing in the New Mexico desert. Felix Baumgartner hit Mach 1.24, or 833.9 mph,... More »

Wind Derails Hypersonic Skydive From Space

Daredevil postpones 23-mile stunt

(Newser) - A healthy sense of his own mortality couldn't stop Felix Baumgartner from hurling himself from the stratosphere in an experimental spacesuit, but a little wind could. Baumgartner was planning to take a record-setting 23-mile dive today that would have given scientists their first look at the effect breaking the... More »

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