On Sunday 20th October 2019, the first non-stop commercial airline flight from New York to Sydney landed after 19 hours 16 minutes in the air.
A total of 49 passengers and crew were on the flight, which is part of Project Sunrise, Qantas’ efforts to push the limits of commercial flying.
As part of the airline’s goal to ensure the health of both passengers and crew on lengthy flights, medical experts were on board to observe activity such as sleep patterns and food and beverage consumption.
Tests included monitoring pilot brain waves, melatonin levels and alertness; exercise classes were also held for passengers.
Cabin lighting and in-flight meals were also adjusted in ways that are expected to help reduce jetlag.
Two more research flights are planned as part of Project Sunrise – London to Sydney in November and another New York to Sydney in December.
Emissions from all research flights will be fully offset.
If all goes to plan, Qantas hopes to start flying to New York and London by 2023, saving New York passengers a four-hour stopover in Los Angeles, and London passengers a connection in Singapore.