# What is the maximum falling speed?

Asked by ChaosCross (2340) February 11th, 2010

By that I mean the fastest possible speed gravity can pull something of weight down to Earth.

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wenn (2673)

well. Gravity is 9.8 lbs per square inch of force on any given object. But there is wind drag. So the more surface area a given object has in relation to its weight, the slower it will fall.

nsexton2 (10)

32 feet per second squared…

For example, a person jumping headfirst from an airplane will never exceed a speed of about 200 km/h (120 mph), due to air resistance.

This of course does not account for the earth’s rotation…

120 mph for a human body—according to CSI Miami—

6rant6 (13690)

The current record is 614MPH (as linked in that first article). Felix Baumgartner is a attempting to break that record this year:

Basically it depends on the friction of the air. Close to the Earth it’s pretty low and the higher you go the fastest you can go.

timtrueman (5751)

Most of our spacefaring is done while “falling” at some 18,000mph.

Nullo (21968)

Depends what’s in your pockets at the time.

ucme (50016)

As @Nullo said, falling from orbit gets you pretty fast. In some cases fast enough to cause a concussive force equivalent to a small nuclear explosion when you hit the ground.

Qingu (21173)

or

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