SYDNEY: The longest continuous passenger flight touched down in Australia Sunday morning after greater than 19 hours within the air, a milestone journey from New York that Qantas hopes to parlay into business success.
Qantas flight QF7879 took 19 hours and 16 minutes to fly direct from New York to Sydney within the first of three “extremely long-haul” journeys deliberate by the airline this yr.
The nationwide flag provider is working the check flights — which additionally embody one from London to Sydney — because it weighs a rollout of normal providers on marathon routes from the USA and Britain to Australia.
Simply 49 folks travelled on the Boeing 787-9 to minimise the load on board and provides the aircraft enough gas vary to journey greater than 16,000 kilometres (9,500 miles) with out re-fuelling.
Qantas CEO Alan Joyce referred to as it “a very historic second” for each the airline and world aviation.
“That is the primary of three check flights that’s going to give you suggestions about how we handle pilot fatigue (and) how we really handle passenger jetlag,” he advised reporters after arriving in Sydney.
“After 19 hours on this flight, I feel we’ve gotten this proper. It looks like we’ve been on a flight lots shorter than that.”
Qantas partnered with two Australian universities to watch how jetlag affected the well being of passengers and crew members as they crossed a number of time zones.
After boarding the flight, passengers set their watches to Sydney time and had been saved awake till night time fell in jap Australia with lighting, train, caffeine and a spicy meal.
Six hours later, they had been served a high-carbohydrate meal, advised to keep away from screens, and the lights had been dimmed to encourage them to sleep by the night time.
Professor Marie Carroll, a researcher from Sydney College who performed the experiment, advised AFP that she anticipated the revolutionary method would lead to “completely minimal” jetlag.
“I count on that they may have a traditional day at present and a traditional night time’s sleep tonight,” she stated, including that she felt “amazingly good” contemplating the flight time.
“It’s all an experiment to see if airways can regulate their schedule of meals, drinks, train and lighting to be in sync with the vacation spot time.”
The 4 pilots on board — who rotated between flying duties — additionally wore gadgets that tracked their mind waves and application.
The Australian and Worldwide Pilots Affiliation, which represents Qantas pilots, has raised considerations about whether or not pilots will get sufficient high quality relaxation throughout extremely long-range flights to take care of peak efficiency.
It has referred to as for a “scientific long-term research” into the impacts on crews.
The airline says the check journeys are only one side of the work it’s doing to make sure the flights are operated safely.
Qantas final yr launched the primary direct service from the western Australian metropolis of Perth to London, with the 17-hour journey one of many longest passenger flights on this planet.