Hey, has anyone seen Clark Kent, ace reporter at the Daily Planet? Evil conglomorate (read: engineering community) DesignSpark is about to launch Superman 29,000 meters into the air and then drop him with nothing but a parachute to aid in his survival! Can't believe Kent isn't here to cover all the villainy (read: science). Seriously, that dude is never around when Superman is doing stuff.
WHAT A CRAZY COINCI--OK, I'm done with this bit now.
All right, so DesignSpark decided they wanted to launch a Mattel action figure of Superman into space and then drop to see if it could survive its hurtle towards the Earth safely. Which they did for fun science. Whatever, this is fun science. Here's what DesignSpark had to say about their experiment:
After applying for permission to launch from Air Traffic Control, we monitored the weather conditions via weather predictor software the few days leading up to our launch window. The weather patterns were predicting low winds and warm and dry conditions, so this was perfect, and also meant that Superman shouldn’t drift too far from the landing site…
If the Superman or his capsule were looking like they were going to land in a city, near a motorway or in dense forest, we could change the balloon size or the amount of gas used, add or reduce the payload weight or have a bigger or smaller parachute.
OK. It's time for Superman to go up, up and away. And then down, down and into a (hopefully) designated region based on solid calculations. Let's go to the videotape!
Superman survived! Metropolis is safe! Also, Kal-El really knows how to strike a pose after plummeting tens of thousands of meters, right? Is his secret identity one of those male models? I knew it. Keep it smoldering, Supes.