Inside Mission Control
The first launch attempt delayed
First launch attempt with the 30 mcf balloon. Winds delayed the mission.
We want to hear your story. After all, you’ve probably spent countless hours reading about ours - even rearranging your busy schedule to catch the documentary ‘Space Dive’ . Now is your chance to share your mission experience with Red Bull Stratos. Read on….
Days before the successful jump from 128,100 feet October 14th following a windy ending to the team’s first launch attempt, emotions were high. The entire project was riding on the weather forecast, and no doubt it was a trying time for all team members. They had one 30mcf balloon left in their possession, one chance for all of the intricate parts to come together and work perfectly. The alternative would have included a major delay and a huge blow to their spirits. There are only a handful of months when the weather in Roswell is superb for ballooning, and an even smaller window of time to launch a high altitude helium balloon.
During this intense waiting period Felix was asked in an interview how he stayed motivated. This portion of his answer was especially touching:
“Every day I get messages from people around the world. One of them, a 13-year-old boy who fights cancer, told me, 'the way you have carried on with this project, makes me want to fight my own battle.’ All of these messages are big motivators for me.”
What impact has Red Bull Stratos made in your life? Does Felix Baumgartner’s supersonic freefall inspire you to work even harder to reach your personal goals? We’d love to hear how your life perspective has changed following this mission. Send your story to email@example.com
Tags: Felix Baumgartner, Red Bull Stratos, space dive
Col. Joe Kittinger (ret), Red Bull Stratos Flight Operations And Safety, Capcom I
Marle Hewett, Red Bull Stratos Program Manager & Senior Flight Test Engineer
Marle Hewett- early days as a lieutenant at USAF Aerospace Research Pilot School at Edwards AFB, class 64B with a T-38
Dr. Jonathan Clark, Red Bull Stratos medical director
Mike Todd, Red Bull Stratos life support engineer
USAF (formerly Capt.) Joe Kittinger & Astronomer William C. White during project Stargazer, a balloon astronomy experiment. 82,000 ft (U.S. Air Force photo) // National Museum of the US Air Force
ATA Aerospace crew
Ed Coca, ATA Aerospace
FlightLine Films' Dennis Fisher, at age 21 in the U.S. Marine Corps
We salute you on this Veterans Day. Who on the Red Bull Stratos Team served his country? Wonder where Felix Baumgartner gained his incredible skydiving skills? His roots go right back to his homeland Austria.
Felix Baumgartner: Served in the Austrian military and was a member of its Special Forces demonstration team.
Mike Todd: Served in the U.S. Air Force 1959-1964 first as a heavy equipment operator and later proved his skydiving proficiency on the parachute team.
Col. Joe Kittinger (ret): During a distinguished U.S. Air Force career, Joe served as a test pilot, Squadron Commander, and Vice Wing Commander, and he spent 11 months as a POW in Vietnam. He retired as a Colonel and subsequently set two world ballooning records and won numerous ballooning competitions.
Marle Hewett, PhD: His 20-year military career also included service as a decorated pilot and test pilot, head of Flying Qualities and Performance in a flight test division, and chairman of the U.S. Naval Academy’s Aerospace Engineering Department.
Dr. Jonathan Clark: Prior to joining NASA as Space Shuttle crew surgeon, Jon devoted 26 years to active service with the U.S. Navy, during which he headed the Spatial Orientation Systems Department at the Naval Aerospace Medical Research Laboratory in Pensacola; the Aeromedical Department at the Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One in Yuma, Arizona; and the Neurology Division and Hyperbaric Medicine at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute. He qualified as a Naval flight officer, Naval flight surgeon, Navy diver and Special Forces freefall parachutist.
Ed Coca: ATA Aerospace (crew chief responsible for the balloon launch, personnel and equipment) served more than 20 years in the Air Force. He’s not alone. The list of veterans is remarkable. Here are the guys who contributed to successful Red Bull Stratos balloon flights: Ray Phipps-Recovery Director, Sam Becerra-Helium Tech, Paul Myers-Parachute Tech, Harvey Harris-Recovery Tech, Joe Fumerola-QA, Bob Cross-Electronics Tech, Glen Chadbourn-Electronics Tech, Troy Jensen-Electronics Tech Served in the Navy, Sean Riordan-Electronics Tech Served in the Army.
And from FlightLine Films we have Dennis Fisher and Mitch Schleis. Dennis was in the Marine Corps during Vietnam for 1966-1969, 20 months in theater. He served the first six months as a rifleman with the 1st Marine Division and the rest of his time as a combat photographer. He was wounded in action in 1967 and spent two months in the Naval Hospital in Guam.
Mitch served in the Air Force from 1983 to 1987 as an “integrated avionics instrument and flight control system specialist” also known as an avionics technician.
Thanks to all veterans named and unnamed. We appreciate your dedication.
Tags: ATA Aerospace, Ed Coca, FlightLine Films, Joe Kittinger, Jon Clark, Marle Hewett, Mike Todd, Red Bull Stratos, Veterans Day, Mitch Schleis, Dennis Fisher
Felix Baumgartner interviewed by multiple production teams after jumping from 128,100 ft
Felix Baumgartner interviewed by multiple production teams after jumping from 128,100 ft
Everyone waited for Felix's arrival after jumping from 128,100 ft Oct. 14, 2012
Can you imagine fitting 5 years of film production into a 2-hour program? Sounds like an impossible goal - very fitting for a mission like Red Bull Stratos. We caught up with National Geographic executive producer Richard Wells for his perspective on the making of ‘Space Dive’, a co-production between BBC, National Geographic Channel and Red Bull Media House. Read on…
1. What was unusual about the way this film was shot and produced?
“The coverage on this film was extraordinary. The sheer volume of material generated by the unique access the BBC production team had to the project proved to be one of the most challenging aspects of the film. With so many cameras covering the emotionally charged drama for years, the variety of frame rates and formats created a significant post production dilemma. Thanks to the tireless efforts of the BBC team, they were able to find a way through the many gigabytes of data to craft a compelling story.”
2. You have roughly 5 years worth of material to work through and edit. How does this film compare to other long term projects?
“I’ve never worked on a project that spanned so much time. A year or two maybe but never five. Consequently I’d have to say that STRATOS is w/out comparison. The data collected was enormous. Given the very short turn-around time the BBC team had to produce 2 versions of a 2 hour program, their task was herculean and the effort required was heroic.”
3. When you first heard of Felix Baumgartner’s attempt, what part of the story fascinated you most / did you most want to tell?
“Having worked on several ‘space’ projects w/NASA over the years, I was drawn to the technical challenge of getting a man safely to the altitude proposed and providing him w/ the means to survive the extreme conditions he’d encounter on the way back. So initially, the ‘science and technology’ elements of the story peaked my interest. These topics are ‘on brand’ for NGC. However, as the ‘science and technology’ unfolded it became apparent that it wouldn’t be the ‘hardware’ that hooked you, it was the human drama that developed around creating the ‘technology’ that would provide an emotional component that few ‘sci/tech’ stories contain. The exceptional access the BBC had made it possible to capture that drama. Given the amount of material, fortunately we had 2 hours to tell the important behind-the-scenes story of Stratos.”
4. The BBC and National Geographic Channel are well-known for their excellent work in documenting innovation and exploration. What aspect of the achievements of the Red Bull Stratos project do you think will come through in your film?
“I think few people understand what it really takes to do what sounds like straight forward objective: Go up to 128,000 feet and jump out. For anyone who watches SPACE DIVE that lack of knowledge will certainly be dispelled. Presenting the reality behind the Stratos project makes the film inspirational. The level of dedication and commitment exhibited by all involved speaks to what’s required to innovate against tradition in any endeavor…to explore new ground on any frontier."
5. Which of the mission team members will the viewer walk away knowing best? Aside from Felix, are there any others who leave the consumer wanting to know more?
"I think Joe Kittinger will have a new following and Art will no doubt attract interest.”
You can watch 'Space Dive’ Sunday, November 11 at 7 p.m. E/P on the National Geographic Channel (Direct TV #276, Dish #186, Comcast #109, TWC #37, check local listings).
Tags: Red Bull Stratos, Felix Baumgartner, National Geographic, Space Dive
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to see Felix Baumgartner and his incredible jump like you’ve never seen before. “Space Dive” - a co-production between BBC, National Geographic Channel and Red Bull Media House, debuts this Sunday, November 11 at 7 p.m. E/P on the National Geographic Channel (Direct TV #276, Dish #186, Comcast #109, TWC #37, check local listings).
1) View the trailer here.
2) For an exclusive interview with Felix after his historic leap, read more in the December issue of The Red Bulletin.
3) Vote for Felix as National Geographic’s 2013 Adventurer of the Year
Tags: Red Bull Stratos, national geographic, Space Dive
Felix in Moscow at Nobu
Photographers eager for a snapshot of Felix in Moscow
Felix in 'Vegas' Moscow
Can you guess where Felix Baumgartner is now? He’s been on a world tour since jumping from 128,100 ft. - first stopping in New York City, then Salzburg, London, and now……?
kaiyves guessed correctly: Moscow
And what was he doing there? You may read about his visit to “Vegas” Moscow in the Russian language. Or here’s a brief, rough translation: Felix has arrived in Moscow to ignite a rightfully deserved a star on the Walk of Fame Vegas, discuss the goals and objectives of his dangerous profession and to share impressions of the heroic mission.
Tags: Felix Baumgartner, Red Bull Stratos, Vegas Moscow