Qantas flew its first non-stop Perth-London Heathrow flight, arriving two minutes early on its 17 hour journey. The first return flight takes place today 25 March departing at 13:15BST.
The record flight is a first for Qantas – the aircraft flies on from Perth to Sydney.
Qantas is eagerly awaiting the result of competitive offering from Airbus and Boeing, that will enable either the A350 or 777-8 to fly non stop to New York, & London Heathrow, which will be the longest operational flights available.
There are a number of compromises required to make such a long flight, including the number of paying passengers, so the economics really matter if the flights are to make money and be sustainable.
Airbus possibly has a slight edge with the A359ULR developed for Singapore Airlines – that will fly direct to New York on the trans polar route, and gives them a deeper understanding of what’s required with an operational aircraft.
Boeing and GE are far from resolving engine issues with the huge 124 inch fans on the new 777-X which puts them a long way behind proving its capabilities in reality, rather than theory.