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Updated on March 21, 2011


This entry contains the most recorded or estimated speed record on Earth for human beings and for the means of locomotion. The speed, although the SI (International System) is measured in m / s, is given here in km / h (kilometers per hour), for reasons of convenience and familiarity, and it is generally understood as the average speed or the ratio between the distance traveled and time taken to travel. Where we mean the maximum current speed (a peak value recorded at a given time), this explicit. In some cases it was considered appropriate to set the record concerning the short and long distance, where the short or long depending on the context, because, in general, the absolute speed record (for living beings) can be maintained only for short traits or conditions.


· Officially, the fastest man in the world on short distance is generally considered the world record holder in the 100-meter dash (a specialty of athletics). The current record holder Jamaican Usain Bolt who is in Berlin August 16, 2009 ran the 100 meters in 9.58 seconds, an average of 37.578 km / h (wind 0.0 m / s).

· If confirmed as the highest average speed from a standing start, in an athletics competition, the fastest man in the world is the world record holder in the 200 meter dash, Usain Bolt with a time of 19.19 won an average of 37.52 km / h and a maximum speed of 43.900 km / h.

· The fastest man in the world long distance is generally considered the world record holder for the marathon (42 kilometers and 195 meters). The current holder is the Ethiopian Haile Gebrselassie (Asella, April 18, 1973) and September 28, 2008 in Berlin (Germany) covered the marathon in 2 hours 3 minutes and 59 seconds at an average speed of 20.4197 km / h.

· The maximum speed attained by a human being without diving suits aircraft or propulsion of a motor, is 526.93 km / h, the record belongs to the Swiss Christian Labhart, in the specialty of speed skydiving (parachuting speed) This speed is then only the result of gravity.


· The fastest mammal on land the cheetah is on the short distance (Acynonix jubatus), and for short distances (a few hundred meters) can reach a speed of 120 km / h. One sample had a record speed of 120.5 km / h along 640 meters in 20 seconds.

· The fastest mammal on land over a long distance is the pronghorn antelope (American pronghorn), which can reach average speeds of 56 km / h on stretches of 6 km. Over short distances can reach speeds of 90 km / h.

· The fastest mammal in water is the killer whale (Orcinus Orca), which reaches speeds of 55.5 km / h

· The fastest horse in the world has reached a speed of 96.4 km / h

· The slowest mammal on land is the three-toed sloth (Bradypus tridactylus), which reaches speeds of 0.1 and 0.16 km / h.

· The animal is the absolute slowest snail that reaches speeds of 0.05 km / h.

· The fastest bird in flight is beat the Swift (Apodiformes), which reaches 160 km / h.

· The fastest bird in the hand is beaten frigate (Pelecaniformes), which reaches speeds of 400 km / h.

· The fastest fish is the sailfish (Istiophorus platypterus), which can reach speeds of 109 km / h.



· The current land speed record in a car was created October 15, 1997 in Black Rock Desert (Nevada, USA) when the RAF pilot Andy Green reached the speed of 1227.98 km / h (Mach 1.02) on board the Thrust SSC (Supersonic Car Thrust), a heavy vehicle 10 tons with two jet engines (more like an airplane without wings to a car that is commonly understood), designed by Richard Noble and Ron Ayers. The Thrust SSC is the first car to have passed "officially" the sound barrier (in 1979 Stan Barrett at the edge of the Budweiser rocket touched the 1,190 km / h but the record was not considered regular). The same is also the holder Andy Green, from August 22, 2006 the record speed for vehicles equipped with diesel engine, having established at the edge of the JCB Dieselmax with 526 km / h.

· The speed record for road cars of the series is currently held by the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport, in 2010, exceeded 431 km / h on the German track in Ehra-Lessien on which he made two steps on a straight stretch of 9 km, and 427 to 434 km / h for an average of 431 km / h, all thanks to the W16 twin-turbo 8.0-liter four-, which delivers 1200 hp and a torque of 1500 Nm The car, driven by a test driver and Volkswagen, for the television program Top Gear, James May, has removed the primacy of American SSC Ultimate Aero TT, which in 2008 reached the 412 km / h.

· Record land speed a motorcycle belongs in Rocky Robinson, ex pilot motocross and trial that September 25th 2010 showed speeds 605.697 kilometers / h, beating previous record held by Chris Carr. The record was established during the last day of the Land Speed Cook Shoot Out in the Bonneville Salt Flats (Utah, USA) and refers to the average speed over the mile run. Robinson is the first man to break the wall of 600 km / h on a motorcycle .

· The speed record for a bicycle driven by a human being belongs to Fred Rompelberg (Netherlands) on 3 October 1995 on the Bonneville Salt Flats (Utah, USA) came to 268.831 km / h. It should be noted that this speed was possible thanks to a special Spaccavento dragster that preceded the bike in the record attempt. The record is without Spaccavento of 130.36 km / h (Sam Whittingham, 2004), on a faired recumbent bicycle, the Varna Diablo.

· The rail speed record belongs to MLX01, a magnetic-levitation train railways in Japan which reached speeds of 581 km / h in the prefecture of Yamanashi December 2, 2003.

· The rail speed record of an experimental vehicle, which is also the land speed record, is 10325 km / h (6416 mph, about Mach 8.5) made by a sled, unmanned, powered by a rocket by the "846th Test Squadron" in the U.S. base Holloman Air Force Base, located in New Mexico .

· The rail speed record for conventional rail train belongs to the V150, a TGV (Train a Grand Vitesse), France, April 3, 2007 that reached speeds of 574.8 km / h on the route between Strasbourg and Paris. The train's name derives from the original purpose of the project that led to its creation, namely to reach a speed of 150 meters per second, equivalent to 540 km / h. This speed was then eclipsed in the official attempt.

· The highest speed for a plane can take off and land autonomously belongs to the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird, which reached a speed of 3529.56 km / h at Beale Air Force Base, California July 28, 1976.

· The highest speed reached on an experimental aircraft belongs to the Boeing X-43A that reached 12,144 km / h (7,546 mph, Mach 9.8) 16 November 2004.

· The manned vehicle that has reached the highest speed was the re-entry capsule of the Apollo 10 mission May 26, 1969 that reached speeds of 39,885 km / h.

· The highest speed ever achieved by an object created by man was 252,792 km / h (70.22 km / s) reached by the spacecraft Helios 2 thanks to the impetus received from the sun's gravitational field. The probe was launched January 16, 1976 and arrived at 43 million km from the Sun.



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    • daffodil2010 profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago


    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 

      7 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      Thanks daffodil2010,you cured my need for speed:-)

    • stars439 profile image


      7 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

      Great hub. GBY


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