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For many years, executives at Australian carrier Qantas Airways Ltd. have coveted a nonstop offering from Sydney and Melbourne to London. Now, as technology has matured, Qantas executives finally see the potential to realize that dream, reports Bloomberg.
Two new models planned by Airbus SE and Boeing Co., they hope, will be able to make the nonstop trip to London—20 hours and 20 minutes—from Sydney. This new model would also jet across the Pacific Ocean to New York in about 18 hours.
In August, Qantas Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce issued a public “challenge” to the companies to extend the range of Boeing’s new 777X, which is slated for 2020, and the planned “Ultra-Long Range” version of Airbus’s A350, which rolls out next year. The public prodding is designed to make one or both manufacturers revisit technical schemes to edge out even greater range.
Qantas hopes to take delivery of such a plane and begin its Sydney to London service in 2022, the company said. Qantas noted that both planes “can get close” to the requirements needed for London and New York missions.
A nonstop flight from Sydney to London would shave almost four hours off current travel times that involve a stopover; for New York, travelers could save nearly three hours.
Long-range flights have become far more common in recent years, as lighter composite aircraft, combined with more durable and fuel-efficient jet turbine technology, have opened a range of new routes with long-haul models from Airbus and Boeing. (Source: Bloomberg))
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