Red Bull Stratos Record Setting Jump Planned For October 8th [VIDEO]
For the past several months, KOWB Meteorologist Don Day has been a part of the Red Bull Stratos Team that has been working toward a record breaking free fall jump from over 120,000 feet.
The latest weather report suggests that Monday, October 8, holds possibilities for the launch of Felix Baumgartner’s Red Bull Stratos mission. On October 1, meteorologist Don Day advised that cold fronts moving east and southeast of the Rocky Mountains are expected to bring cooler temperatures to the Roswell area, but also hold the potential for low clouds.
Meteorologist Don Day said,
“The timing of these cold fronts will be critical, as low clouds and moisture and increasing wind will be associated with each front,The timing of the fronts could change within 24 hours, but we expect further clarity by Friday.”
The balloon, the largest ever made for manned flight, was constructed out of strips of high-performance polyethylene, a plastic film. The balloon’s height when it reaches jump altitude will be 334 feet (102 meters), with a diameter of 424 feet (129 meters).
The launch on October 8 is scheduled for dawn, which is the best time with ideal wind conditions to avoid tearing the mammoth balloon envelope. Eight hours before the launch, a specially trained 15-man crew will begin preparing for the balloon’s one and only flight. The crew will closely remove any dirt or fine debris from the runway that could damage the balloon before a team of about 10, wearing cotton gloves and protective clothing to prevent snags, will carefully move the boxed balloon from the hangar and begin laying it out on a protective layer of Herculite, a durable fabric. One hour before the launch, Crew Chief Ed Coca will get clearance from Don Day and Mission Control to begin the final countdown and give the order to start inflating the balloon, which has an un-inflated weight of 3,708 pounds / 1,682 kilograms. It will take about 45 to 60 minutes to pump the helium, a non-flammable gas that is lighter than air, from two trucks into the balloon while a third truck with specially designed equipment will hold down the balloon.
The balloon, 10 times larger than the balloon used by Joe Kittinger for his record jump from 102,800 feet (31,333 meters) 52 years ago, which Felix Baumgartner will be trying to beat, will be tall and thin at the launch.
Baumgartner is a 43-year-old Austrian adventurer who has been training with the Red Bull Stratos team for the jump from the edge of space for more than five years and even though many of the images and video from Baumgartner jump will not be available for several weeks, here is a computer generated look at what he should experience during his jump.
The jump will be covered from takeoff to touchdown by more than 35 cameras in the air and on the ground, the live online broadcast will provide a firsthand experience of the entire mission.If you would like to watch the launch and the jump live, the instructions to do that are also here.
Don Day joined us this morning with the latest update on the mission including the possibility of a weather delay that could delay the flight to Tuesday or Wednesday.
Don also noted that the Discovery Channel has agreed to air the entire event from beginning to end on the day that it takes place. For the latest on the jump tune in to K2 Radio for updates.