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…Michel Fournier is one crazy jumper?

Michel Fournier - The Great Leap

If all goes according to plan, Michel Fournier will complete a two decade and $20 million long journey today to balloon into the upper reaches of the atmosphere and then skydive back down in what he’s calling Le Grad Saut, or, The Great Leap.

His leap begins on the ground, where he will load into a 10 foot tall pressurized gondola that will hang from the bottom of a 650-foot balloon. This balloon will take him to a height of 130,000 feet (25 miles) over the course of two-hours, at which point he will open the door and step into the blackness of space.

To survive the fall, which will last for a full 15 minutes, he’s going to be wearing a special space suit and a parachute that is designed to automatically deploy when he’s 5,000 feet above the ground.

Along the way, he will reach, and then cross the speed of sound. (And then top out at a speed of around 1,000 MPH) If that sounds crazy, it is. Scientists are still unsure of what will happen when a person crosses the sound barrier unaided.

With those speeds, Fournier will also be breaking four new records: fastest free fall, longest free fall, highest altitude for a human balloon flight and highest parachute jump.

So what are the potential risks?

If his suit fails, the pressure would cause his blood could boil, and he would loose consciousness in less than five seconds. (Which sounds like a blessing if your blood is boiling during those five seconds!)

His first try was yesterday, and was canceled due to weather related complications, so let’s hope that today provides Michel with smoother sailing, and that he finds his way back to Earth in one piece!

[Via: The New York Times]

…PETA hates the Olsens?

The Trollsen Twins

To say that PETA is not a fan of the Olsen twins would be to put it lightly.

In fact, they’ve actually created an entire site that’s just designed to bash on the fur-wearing twins.

Called “Meet the Trollsen Twins”, it lets you dress up Hairy-Kate and Trashley in blood drenched furs, watch a cleverly edited Full House clip, send them a message to urge them to abandon the fur, and more.

In true PETA style, it’s a bit grotesque, but if you’ve never liked the billionaire jailbait duo, then now’s your chance to exact some revenge.

[PETA – Meet the Trollsen Twins]

[Via: CO-ED]

…Laura Splan makes strange scarfs?

Blood Scarf

Laura Splan’s Blood Scarf creeps me out a little bit. It’s knit out of clear vinyl tubing, and connected intravenously to the wearer’s hand. Then, your body fills the scarf with your own blood, so that “the device keeps the user warm with their blood while at the same time draining their blood drip by drip”.

[Laura Splan]

[Via: Everything Weird]

…Oxycyte gives your blood more oxygen?


Oxycyte might not look like the blood you’re used to seeing, but if you ever suffer a traumatic brain injury (America’s leading cause of accidental death), you’d be glad to see a pint of this flowing into your body. That’s because Oxycyte is a man-made, synthetic substance that carries oxygen 50 times more effectively than our own blood. Though it doesn’t have any of the other features of normal blood, researchers hope that it’s dramatically increased oxygen carrying capacity will allow Oxycyte to serve as the perfect blood substitute during emergency surgeries where a lack of oxygen often leads to brain injury. I’ll take a pint of Oxycyte and a pint of Rocky Road to go please.

[Popular Science – Oxycyte]

[Via: Random Good Stuff]