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The Highest Jump And Longest Free Fall Ever Recorded

Human Achievements

On August 16th, 1960, as a part of the Air Force research program (Project Excelsior), Air Force Capt. Joseph W. Kittinger Jr. stepped off a platform raised to 102,800 feet over Tularosa, New Mexico by a high-altitude balloon.

The Air Force program was designed to investigate the use of a parachute for escape from a space capsule or high-altitude aircraft. To survive the altitude Kittinger wore a pressure suit like those for astronauts.

After 4 minutes, 36 seconds of free fall Kittinger reached a speed of 714 mph (becoming the only human to break the sound barrier without being enclosed in a machine of any kind) and falling 84,700 feet before opening his parachute. He landed safely after 13 minutes, 45 seconds after jumping.

Posted:  2003-10-11  9:14:35 PM

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