Qantas has announced to operate three ultra long-haul research flights for its “Project Sunrise.
Project Sunrise is to offer non-stop commercial flights (21 hours) from the east coast of Australia (Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne) to London and New York.
The three flights over three months will use new Boeing 787-9s and re-route their planned delivery flights.
Instead of flying empty from Seattle to Australia, the aircraft will simulate two Project Sunrise routes – London and New York to Sydney.
This will represent the world’s first flight by a commercial airline direct from New York to Sydney and only the second time a commercial airline has flown direct from London to Sydney.
Each flight will have a maximum of 40 people, including crew, in order to minimise weight and give the necessary fuel range. Carbon emissions from the flights will be fully offset.
The on-board research is being designed in partnership with Sydney University’s Charles Perkins Centre and Monash University in conjunction with CRC for Alertness, Safety and Productivity.
The purpose of the research flights is to test the comfort and wellbeing of passengers and crew to minimising jet lag and creating an environment where they are looking forward to a restful, enjoyable flight.