Nightly News | October 14, 2012
>>> suspenseful and awe-inspiring tv spectacle. one man's daredevil leap from a capsule from 22 miles above the earth. part marketing stunt or not. adventure felix baumgartner pushed the boundaries of human endurnance at almost 800 miles an hour. nbc's tom costello monitored the mission. he joins us from washington with more.
>> the team says that felix baumgartner broke the record for the highest jump ever, the highest free fall and he broke the sound barrier at mach 1 .
>> felix disconnect the oxygen hose.
>> reporter: there he was at 128,000 feet, standing quite literally on the edge of space, preparing to do what no one had done before, with his mom watching from mission control , 43-year-old felix baumgartner offered a few words most most part to understood. then he was gone, beginning a terrifying supersonic dive from 24 miles up. a white dot as he quickly passed 700 miles an hour.
>> speed 720 miles an hour.
>> reporter: the scene began well before sun rise as they prepared felix. baumgartner is no novice he's made harrowing dumps before from 15 and 18 miles up. but today was about breaking a free fall record that has stood since 1960 . the former austrian military paratrooper faced instant death. he told jay leno that fear is healthy. this morning after a brief burst of wind, baumgartner 's balloon got the green light . and 2 1/2 hours later, he was standing where no man had stood before.
>> and our guahe shot out like a bullet. exceeding the speed of sound , and then with a face mask fogging up, what looked like a terrifying out of control flat spin before he stabilized. finally 4 1/2 minutes later, baumgartner pulled his chute and floated to a landing in the new mexico desert.
>> you're out there, you do not want to die in front of your parents, your girlfriend.
>> reporter: it was ex extraordinary. nasa feels that there could be amount to be learned and the techniques that could be used on future nasa space missions .
>> what happened to the capsule?
>> it also came down via parachute in the new mexican desert and we're told it's