The exploration flight, the first time the two cities have been connected by air in one go, is part of Project Sunrise, Qantas's effort to push the boundaries of commercial flights. Although Qantas is well versed in the operation of long-distance routes, given that Australia is nowhere near everywhere, connecting Sydney and Melbourne to New York and London so far remains beyond the scope of the airline.
Flight 7879 departed New York on Friday night, loaded with 222,900 pounds (101,000 kilograms) of fuel to make the trip. As the 787-9 does not have the scope to complete the 10,000-mile (16,200-kilometer) full-load journey, the flight carries only 50 passengers and crew and no cargo. The airline was brand new, just got off the Boeingassembly line near Seattle.
As part of Project Sunrise's goal of limiting the backlog and ensuring the health of both passengers and crew on long-haul flights, several medical experts were on board to monitor passengers' sleep patterns and food consumption and consumption. drinks. The four-member, rotating crew also carried EEG (brain-wave) monitors that track brain waves and alertness.
If Qantas decides to continue new flights and gain the necessary regulatory approval, it hopes to begin flying to New York and London by 2023, the airline writes. But Qantas still has to clear a critical hurdle before it can do so: It needs an airplane that can make any full-load route. Both the newand the still-flying may have the necessary potential, but the airline has not yet made orders.
Qantas operates a 17-hour non-stop flight from Perth to London using the 787 from 2016, but flights to New York and London will become the longest flights in the world, at about 19 hours each. Travelers in New York will save a four-hour stop in Los Angeles, while passengers in London will save a connection in Singapore.