Tag Archives: QANTAS Airways

QANTAS to take off to Tokyo Haneda and starts Sapporo service

QANTAS Airways will become the first airline to launch nonstop flights between Melbourne and Tokyo’s Haneda International Airport.

New flights to Haneda

The year-round flights to Haneda will operate daily from March 29, 2020* with an Airbus A330 aircraft, replacing the airline’s existing service between Melbourne and Tokyo’s Narita International Airport

The flights are expected to save travellers more than an hour commuting into the city and complement QANTAS’ existing daily flights from Sydney to Haneda which the Australian national carrier has operated since 2015.

Seasonal service to Sapporo commences

The announcement comes as the airline’s new seasonal flights from Sydney to Sapporo took off on December 16, coinciding with the busy ski season in Japan.

QANTAS is the only airline to connect Australia directly with the Hokkaido region and the service is the national carrier’s fifth route between Australia and Japan.

The national carrier has also announced it will extend its seasonal service to Sapporo for another year.

The flights will operate three times per week during the 2020-21 ski season from December 14, 2020 to February 27, 2021* with the airline’s upgraded A330.

The Qantas Group operates more than 40 flights per week from Japan to Australia. This includes Qantas’s flights from Brisbane to Narita; Melbourne to Narita (from March 2020, this will be replaced with Melbourne to Haneda); and Sydney to Osaka, Haneda and Sapporo (seasonal). The Group’s low-cost carrier, Jetstar, operates flights from Cairns to Narita and Osaka, and Gold Coast to Narita.

*Subject to government and regulatory approval.

QANTAS Airways aircraft photo gallery:

QANTAS selects the Airbus A350-1000 as the preferred aircraft if Project Sunrise proceeds

QANTAS Airways has made this announcement:

  • Airbus A350 selected as preferred aircraft (no order placed)
  • Deadline for confirming delivery slots extended by one month
  • Regulatory support for ultra long haul routes, pending formal application
  • Discussions with pilots ongoing

Qantas is today announcing several important developments for Project Sunrise ahead of a final go/no go decision, which will now take place in March 2020.

AIRCRAFT SELECTION

After detailed evaluation of the Boeing 777X and Airbus A350, Qantas has selected the A350-1000 as the preferred aircraft if Sunrise proceeds. This aircraft uses the Rolls Royce Trent XWB engine, which has a strong reliability record after being in service with airlines for more than two years. Airbus will add an additional fuel tank and slightly increase the maximum takeoff weight to deliver the performance required for Sunrise routes.

No orders have been placed but Qantas will work closely with Airbus to prepare contract terms for up to 12 aircraft ahead of a final decision by the Qantas Board.

Airbus has agreed to extend the deadline to confirm delivery slots from February 2020 to March 2020. This provides additional time to negotiate an industrial agreement without impacting the planned start date of Project Sunrise flights in the first half of calendar 2023.

REGULATORY APPROVAL

The last of three Project Sunrise research flights (New York to Sydney) will be conducted on December 17, 2019. Once complete, Qantas will have almost 60 hours of ‘Sunrise flying’ experience and thousands of data points on crew and passenger wellbeing.

The data for crew will be used as part of final discussions with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority to approve an extension to current operating limits required for these ultra long haul services. Based on detailed information already provided by Qantas on its fatigue risk management system, CASA has provisionally advised that it sees no regulatory obstacles to the Sunrise flights.

PILOT NEGOTIATIONS

Industrial negotiations with representatives for Qantas pilots, AIPA, are continuing. The discussions are aimed at closing the last remaining gap in the Project Sunrise business case. Qantas has put forward a number of suggestions to AIPA on how the gap might be closed while still offering three per cent annual pay increases and promotional opportunities to its long haul pilots. Discussions centre on productivity and efficiency gains, including the ability to use the same pilots across its A350 Sunrise aircraft and the airline’s existing fleet of Airbus A330s.

CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

Design of the customer experience for flights up to 21 hours continues, including new cabins across First Class, Business, Premium Economy and Economy. Research flights have underscored the importance of dedicated space for stretching and movement for Economy passengers in particular, as well as the potential benefits from re-designing the service on board to actively shift people to their destination timezone.

CEO COMMENTS

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the national carrier’s support for Project Sunrise was stronger than ever, particularly after the success of recent ‘dry run’ research flights.

“Between the research flights and what we’ve learned from two years of flying Perth to London, we have a lot of confidence in the market for direct services like New York and London to the east coast of Australia.

“The A350 is a fantastic aircraft and the deal on the table with Airbus gives us the best possible combination of commercial terms, fuel efficiency, operating cost and customer experience.

“The aircraft and engine combination is next generation technology but it’s thoroughly proven after more than two years in service. This is the right choice for the Sunrise missions and it also has the right economics to do other long haul routes if we want it to.

“From the outset, we’ve been clear that Project Sunrise depends on a business case that works. We’ll only commit to this investment if we know it will generate the right return for our shareholders given the inherent commercial risks.

“We’ve done a lot of work on the economics and we know the last gap we have to close is some efficiency gains associated with our pilots. We’re offering promotions and an increase in pay but we’re asking for some flexibility in return, which will help lower our operating costs.

“Airbus has given us an extra month to lock in an aircraft order without impacting our planned start date, which means we can spend more time on hopefully reaching a deal with our pilots.

“Can I thank both Airbus and Boeing for the tremendous effort they have put into Project Sunrise. It was a tough choice between two very capable aircraft, made even harder by innovation from both manufacturers to improve on what they had already spent years designing.”

QANTAS operates its last Boeing 747 flight from the Mainland USA

QANTAS Airways Boeing 747-438 ER VH-OEE (msn 32909) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 931607.

QANTAS Airways on December 3, 2019 operated the last regularly scheduled Boeing 747 revenue flight from the mainland United States.

This flight ended 47 years of Boeing 747 service to the mainland United States.

Flight QF74 was operated with the pictured VH-OEE.

SFO made this announcement on social media:

Goodbye Queen! On December 3 QANTAS flew it’s final 747 flight from Sydney to SFO, ending 747 service to the Mainland US. These planes will be replaced by the 787 Dreamliner starting the following day.

Top Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 747-438 ER VH-OEE (msn 32909) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 931607.

QANTAS aircraft slide show:

QANTAS Centenary celebrations take off as nonstop London-Sydney research flight lands

100 Centenary Scheme - "QANTAS Time Capsule Towards 2120"

QANTAS Airways has made this announcement:

  • Project Sunrise research flight direct from London to Sydney lands after 19 hours and 19 minutes
  • Qantas announces Centenary program to celebrate 100 years of the flying kangaroo
  • Royal Australian Mint unveils commemorative $1 centenary coin
  • Qantas exhibition to visit a number of cities across Australia

Qantas has kicked off 12 months of centenary celebrations as it marks a fresh milestone in aviation with a nonstop London to Sydney flight.

Flown by the latest addition to the national carrier’s fleet, a brand new Boeing 787 Dreamliner landed in Sydney at  12:28pm, 19 hours and 19 minutes after leaving Heathrow. It follows the non-stop New York to Sydney flight last month as the second of three research flights aim at improving crew and passenger wellbeing on ultra long haul services under consideration.

The direct flight reduced total travel time by around two hours compared with current one-stop services from the east coast of Australia. It is only the second time any commercial airline has flown this route nonstop, after Qantas flew a near-empty 747-400 in 1989.

The new Dreamliner was met by more than 1,000 Qantas employees to mark the flying kangaroo’s 99th birthday and kick off 12 months of celebrations as it heads towards its centenary.

Three components of those celebrations were revealed today – special livery on a new Dreamliner that will be seen at airports around the world, featuring every Qantas logo since 1920; a $1 coin to mark the 100th that will enter circulation next year; and a touring exhibition that will visit a number of cities around Australia.

Qantas Chairman Richard Goyder said: “Qantas is a national icon because it’s been such a big part of Australian life for so long.

“We started in outback Queensland carrying mail and a few passengers in the 1920s. We grew as Australia grew, and we’ve had important support roles during wars, national disasters and celebrations. Our founders talked about overcoming the tyranny of distance and through the years we’ve moved from bi-planes, to single wing, to jets to help bring things closer,” added Mr Goyder.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: “Almost a century after our first flight, Qantas and Jetstar carry more than 50 million people around this country and the globe each year. I’m sure that would amaze our three founders, who held the early board meetings of this company at the local tailor’s shop because it was the longest table they could find.”

“A lot of Australians saw the world for the first time on a flying kangaroo. And a lot of migrants started their life in Australia when they first stepped on a Qantas plane.

“There are so many amazing Qantas stories that also tell the story of modern Australia. We want our centenary to be a celebration of those stories as well as how we’ll be part of taking the spirit of Australia further in the years ahead,” added Mr Joyce.

Qantas will officially turn 99 years old, and begin its 100th year, on Saturday November 16, 2019.

ABOUT THE CENTENARY AIRCRAFT

The new 787 Centenary livery aircraft will fly across key Qantas international destinations, including Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and London. Named Longreach after the Queensland town that was key to the airline’s origins, it joins nine other Qantas 787s that are all named after things that are iconically Australian, includingSkippy, Great Southern Land, Waltzing Matilda and Jillaroo.

ABOUT THE $1 CIRCULATING COIN

The Royal Australian Mint will produce approximately 5 million limited edition one-dollar coins to be used in Australia for every day cash transactions, which will go into general circulation from February 2020.

For collectors, there is an eleven-piece collection set featuring key milestones and images of aircraft from across the decades including the Avro, Catalina Flying Boat, Boeing 707 and 747 and the A380. The centrepiece is a Kangaroo copper coin similar to the original Australian penny, which inspired Qantas’ iconic Kangaroo symbol. Sets are available at www.qantasstore.com.au.

ABOUT THE DIRECT LONDON-SYDNEY FLIGHT

  • QF 7879 flight London to Sydney flight time was 19 hours and 19 minutes. Touch down at Sydney International airport was 12:28pm
  • The flight was operated by a brand-new Boeing 787-9 registration VH ZNJ, named Longreach.
  • The service was a re-purposed delivery flight. Rather than flying from Boeing’s factory in Seattle back to Australia empty, the aircraft was positioned in London to simulate one of the Project Sunrise routes under consideration by Qantas. All carbon emissions were offset.
  • The flight departed London’s Heathrow Airport and flew across 11 countries including England, Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Belarus, Russia, Kazakhstan, China, Philippines and Indonesia before crossing the Australian coast near Darwin, tracking south east across Australia towards Sydney.
  • Remaining fuel upon landing was approximately 6300kg which translates to about 1 hour 45 minutes of flight time

Top Copyright Photo (all others by QANTAS): QANTAS Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner VH-ZNJ (msn 66074) (100 Centenary) PAE (Nick Dean). Image: 948008.

QANTAS Airways aircraft slide show:

QANTAS to operate nonstop London – Sydney research flight

QANTAS Airways has made this announcement:

  • 2nd of 3 Project Sunrise research flights to reduce jetlag and design optimum crew rest and work pattern
  • Builds on learnings from New York-Sydney service last month
  • ‘Supper at breakfast time’ among changes to on-board service to help passengers adjust to new timezone
  • Almost 100 years to the day that the first London to Australia flight operated

Australia’s national carrier is preparing for its second ultra-long haul research flight, as part of scientific studies into minimising jetlag for passengers and improving crew wellbeing.

The first research flight operated between New York and Sydney nonstop four weeks ago with 49 passengers and crew. It cut around three hours off the typical gate-to-gate travel time of current one-stop flights.

The airline has re-purposed the delivery flights of three brand new 787 Dreamliner aircraft, which would otherwise ferry empty from Seattle to Australia. A third research flight, repeating the New York-Sydney route, will take place in December.

Tomorrow’s flight marks only the second time in history that a commercial airline has flown direct from London to Sydney. The first was 30 years ago in 1989, when Qantas operated a 747-400 ferry flight between the two cities. The aircraft that performed that flight (VH-OJA) is now on public display at an aviation museum, south of Sydney.

Researchers from the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre as well as the Cooperative Research Centre for Alertness, Safety and Productivity (Alertness CRC) will again travel on the non-stop Dreamliner flight to collect passenger and crew data.

The findings from all three research flights will be used to inform future service and product design, aimed at increasing wellbeing and comfort during travel on long-haul flights – in particular the direct flights Qantas hopes to operate on a commercial basis between the east coast of Australia and London and New York.

Project Sunrise Research Flight #2 – London to Sydney

The research flight will carry around 50 passengers and crew in order to give the 787-9 the range required for the 17,800 km flight, expected to take around 19 and a half hours.

While the flight is over 1,500 kilometers further than New York to Sydney, the duration is expected to be similar due to prevailing tail winds between London and Sydney.

All carbon emissions from the research flights will be offset. Qantas recently announced an acceleration of its efforts to reduce its broader carbon footprint, including effectively doubling current levels of flight offsetting, capping carbon emissions from 2020 onwards and totally eliminate net emissions by the year 2050.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said air travel had evolved over the years and innovation was key, which involved looking at options to redesign aircraft cabins to include “move and stretch” zones and other social spaces.

“We know that travellers want room to move on these direct services, and the exercises we encouraged on the first research flight seemed to work really well. So, we’re definitely looking to incorporate on-board stretching zones and even some simple modifications like overhead handles to encourage low impact exercises.”

Professor Corinne Caillaud from the Charles Perkins Centre said that data from all three flights will be used for the analysis however feedback from participants on the first flight suggests the changes trialed would be welcome by passengers.

“We are hopeful that the interventions and strategies we tried on the first research flight helped passengers better manage the challenges of crossing multiple time zones. From a research point of view, it was something quite novel.

“We’re looking forward to this second flight, which will involve passengers eating supper at breakfast time, with the aim of encouraging them to sleep at 10am in the morning London time to help avoid light and reset their body clock to Sydney time.”

Passengers will board at 6am London time. After take-off they will be offered a range of high GI supper options such as chicken broth with macaroni or a steak sandwich, along with a glass of wine and a milk based pana cotta dessert.

Cabin lighting and temperature, stretching and meditation will also play key roles in the research.

Qantas first started flying between London and Sydney in 1947. It took five days and six stops. Today, the airline flies London to Perth non-stop in around 17 hours and the route has the highest customer satisfaction rating of any flight on the Qantas international network.

Mr Joyce added: “Our Perth to London flight was a huge leap forward and it’s been incredibly popular. The final frontier is New York and London to the east coast of Australia non-stop and we are hopeful of conquering that by 2023 if we can make all elements of the business case stack up.

“I’ve had business travellers tell me they’d rather stay on board and watch an extra episode of their favourite show before arriving at their final destination, rather than spending 90 minutes on the ground waiting for a connecting flight. I’ve also had a few parents tell me they would rather not disturb their kids if they are settled in and avoid having to bundle them and all their carry-on luggage off and back on a flight during a stopover. So, there is definitely support for the nonstop flights”.

The London to Sydney Project Sunrise research flight will operate almost 100 years to the day that the first ever flight from the UK to Australia took off from Hounslow Heath (near today’s Heathrow Airport) on 12 November 1919. It landed in Darwin 28 days later on 10 December 1919.

Airbus and Boeing have pitched aircraft (the A350 and 777X respectively) with the range to operate Project Sunrise flights on a commercial basis. These pitches, together with findings from the research flights and other streams of work, will form part of a business case being developed by Qantas to inform a final yes/no decision on Project Sunrise expected by the end of this year. If approved, flights could start as early as start in 2023.

Qantas has named its endeavor “Project Sunrise” after the airline’s historic ‘Double Sunrise’ endurance flights during the Second World War, which remained airborne long enough to see two sunrises.

QANTAS Group to slash carbon emissions

100 Centenary Scheme - "QANTAS Time Capsule Towards 2120"

The QANTAS Group will reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050 in a major expansion of the airline’s commitment to a more sustainable aviation industry.

The national carrier will:

  • Immediately double the number of flights being offset
  • Cap net emissions from 2020 onwards
  • Invest $50 million over 10 years to help develop a sustainable aviation fuel industry

 

CUTTING NET CARBON EMISSION

This announcement means that Qantas is the only airline group to commit to cap its net emissions at 2020 levels, and the second to commit to net zero emissions by 2050.

In total, these commitments are the most ambitious carbon emissions targets of any airline group globally.

Qantas, Jetstar*, QantasLink and Qantas Freight will offset all growth in emissions from domestic and international operations from 2020.

This includes offsetting all net emissions from Project Sunrise, the carrier’s plan to operate non-stop flights from the east coast of Australia to London and New York, should the project proceed. This will also extend to domestic flying, meaning that growth on key routes like Melbourne-Sydney will be carbon neutral.

The aviation industry, which contributes around 2 per cent of global CO2 emissions, has committed to halving emissions by 2050 compared to 2005 levels. It was the first industry to make such commitments. Qantas had signed up to those commitments but will now exceed them.

Qantas will work with industry, research institutions and governments to develop the long-term solutions to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the aviation industry over the next three decades.

OFFSETTING FLIGHTS

Qantas currently operates the largest carbon offset program in the aviation industry, with around 10 per cent of customers booking flights on Qantas.com choosing to offset their flights.

From today, Qantas and Jetstar will double the number of flights offset by matching every dollar spent by customers who tick the box to fly carbon neutral. By matching our customers’ commitment, we expect even more people to offset their emissions.

This additional investment will see Qantas Future Planet, which is already the largest private sector buyer of Australian carbon credits, support more conservation and environmental projects in Australia and around the world.

Existing projects include protecting the Great Barrier Reef, working with Indigenous communities to reduce wildfires in Western Australia and securing over 7000 hectares of native Tasmanian forest.

SUSTAINABLE AVIATION FUEL

Qantas will invest $50 million over the next ten years to help develop a sustainable aviation fuel industry.

Sustainable aviation fuel can reduce carbon emissions by eighty per cent compared to traditional jet fuel, but are currently almost double the price.

Qantas will work with governments and private sector partners to support the development of sustainable aviation fuel in Australia and overseas to make it more viable and increase demand throughout the industry.

The national carrier will also continue to reduce its emissions through continued investment in more fuel efficient aircraft, more efficient operations such as single-engine taxiing, and smarter flight planning to reduce fuel burn.

Qantas is on track to replace its Boeing 747 fleet by the end of 2020 with the more fuel-efficient B787 Dreamliners, which burn 20 per cent less fuel than aircraft of a similar size. Jetstar’s A321neo (LR) aircraft,
which begin arriving next year, use 15 per cent less fuel than the aircraft they are replacing.

The Qantas Group continues to work with aircraft and engine manufacturers on next-generation technology that will deliver a further step-change in emissions reduction – however, innovations such as electric aircraft engines are still some time away.

CEO COMMENTS

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said these commitments would make Qantas a leader in the aviation industry’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

“We recognise that airlines have a responsibility to cut emissions and combat climate change. We’ve already made some good progress, especially by investing in newer aircraft that have a much smaller carbon footprint.

“We want to do more, and faster. We’re effectively doubling our carbon offsetting program from today and we’re capping our net emissions across Qantas and Jetstar from 2020 so that all new flying will be carbon
neutral.

“Qantas offsets all of its own travel needs and so do many of our customers. By matching their efforts, we’re hoping it will encourage even more people to offset and the program will keep growing.

“These short-term actions will go towards a longer-term goal of being completely net carbon neutral by 2050. It’s ambitious, but achievable.

“Innovation is going to be key. We’re investing $50 million to hopefully kickstart a sustainable aviation fuel industry in Australia. We know from our own trials that the technology works but we need to get to a scale of production where it’s a practical substitute.

“Concerns about emissions and climate change are real, but we can’t lose sight of the contribution that air travel makes to society and the economy. The industry has already come a long way in cutting its footprint and the solution from here isn’t to simply ‘fly less’ but to make it more sustainable.

“We’re doing this because it’s the responsible thing to do, but hopefully it will also encourage more people to choose Qantas and Jetstar because of the action we’re taking,” added Mr Joyce.

Copyright Photo: Gordon Reid via John Adlard.

In other news, Qantas has completed precautionary inspections of thirty-three 737NG aircraft, checking for hairline cracks that have appeared in some high cycle aircraft worldwide.

The cracks relate to the ‘pickle fork’ structure, which is located between the wing and fuselage. Qantas brought forward these precautionary checks by up to seven months and completed them within seven days.

Of the 33 of Qantas’ 737 aircraft that required inspection, three were found to have a hairline crack in the pickle fork structure. These aircraft have been removed from service for repair.

The aircraft had all completed around 27,000 cycles. Any aircraft with more than 22,600 cycles was inspected, in line with advice from regulators.

Qantas will minimise any customer impact from having these aircraft temporarily out of service.

Qantas is working with Civil Aviation Safety Authority and Boeing to resolve this issue, which involves some complex repair work. All three aircraft are expected to return to service before the end of the year.

CEO of Qantas Domestic, Andrew David said: “As people would expect with Qantas, we’ve gone above what was required to check our aircraft well ahead of schedule.

“We would never fly an aircraft that wasn’t safe. Even where these hairline cracks are present they’re not an immediate risk, which is clear from the fact the checks were not required for at least seven months.

“Unfortunately, there were some irresponsible comments from one engineering union, which completely misrepresented the facts. Those comments were especially disappointing given the fantastic job our engineers have done to inspect these aircraft well ahead of schedule, and the priority they give to safety every day of the week,” added Mr David.

Qantas will continue to monitor aircraft that are in scope of the airworthiness directive as inspections fall due.

Top Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner VH-ZNJ (msn 66074) (100 Centenary) PAE (Nick Dean). Image: 948008.

QANTAS Airways aircraft slide show:

Record-breaking nonstop New York – Sydney flight touches down

QANTAS Airways made this announcement:

The first nonstop commercial airline flight from New York to Sydney has landed after 19 hours 16 minutes in the air.

A total of 49 passengers and crew were on the flight, which was used to run a series of experiments to assess health and well-being onboard.

Data from these experiments will be used help shape the crew rostering and customer service of Qantas’ ultra long haul flights in future – including Project Sunrise (opens in new window).

Tests ranged from monitoring pilot brain waves, melatonin levels and alertness, through to exercise classes for passengers.

Cabin lighting and in-flight meals were also adjusted in ways that are expected to help reduce jetlag, according to the medical researchers and scientists (opens in new window) who have partnered with Qantas.

Arriving in Sydney, Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: “This is a really significant first for aviation. Hopefully, it’s a preview of a regular service that will speed up how people travel from one side of the globe to the other.

“We know ultra long haul flights pose some extra challenges but that’s been true every time technology has allowed us to fly further. The research we’re doing should give us better strategies for improving comfort and wellbeing along the way.

“Night flights usually start with dinner and then lights off. For this flight, we started with lunch and kept the lights on for the first six hours, to match the time of day at our destination. It means you start reducing the jetlag straight away.

“What’s already clear is how much time you can save. Our regular, one-stop New York to Sydney service (QF12) took off three hours before our direct flight but we arrived a few minutes ahead of it, meaning we saved a significant amount of total travel time by not having to stop,” added Mr Joyce.

David Gray /Getty Images for Qantas

Qantas Captain Sean Golding, who led the four pilots operating the service, said: “The flight went really smoothly. Headwinds picked up overnight, which slowed us down to start with, but that was part of our scenario planning. Given how long we were airborne, we were able to keep optimising the flight path to make the best of the conditions.

“We had a lot of interest from air traffic controllers as we crossed through different airspace because of the uniqueness of this flight. We also had a special sign off and welcome home from the control towers in New York and Sydney, which you don’t get every day.

“Overall, we’re really happy with how the flight went and it’s great have some of the data we need to help assess turning this into a regular service,” said Captain Golding.

Two more research flights are planned as part of the Project Sunrise evaluations – London to Sydney in November and another New York to Sydney in December. Emissions from all research flights will be fully offset.

A decision on Project Sunrise is expected by the end of the year.

Photos by James D Morgan/Qantas.