We’re all hoping the third time’s the charm for Felix Baumgartner and his crazy supersonic skydive from 23 miles up, which is slated for Sunday morning. You can watch it here live.
Mother Nature has been less than cooperative, however, and it’s the weather that got us here. Baumgartner’s jump, originally scheduled for Monday, was bumped a day by a cold front, then aborted at the last minute Tuesday due to high wind at the launch site in Roswell, New Mexico. The team is looking for wind speeds of no more than 2 or 3 mph when it inflates the massive 55-story helium balloon that will carry his space capsule aloft.
Baumgartner hopes to break an unofficial record Col. Joe Kittinger set with a leap from 102,800 feet in 1960, and expand our understanding of what happens during a free fall from extreme altitude. Such lessons could be valuable as commercial space flight takes off. He’s already made two test jumps — from 13 miles up in March and from 18 miles up in July.
Of course, it’s the last jump that really matters.