Australian airline Cantas has completed the longest non-stop commercial passenger flight exploring the potential impact of ultra-long haul flights on pilots, crew and passengers.
With 49 people aboard, the Boeing 787-9 Drinliner completed the 10,066-mile journey from New York to Sydney in 19 hours and 16 minutes.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said: "This is a really important first for aviation. Hopefully, it is a review of regular service that will speed up the way people travel from one side of the globe to the other."
Research on the health and well-being of those aboard was carried out during the flight with tests ranging from monitoring the brain waves to the brain, melatonin levels and vigilance exercises for passenger training.
Oyss added: "We know that the ultra-long flight time presents some additional challenges, but this is true every time technology allows us to fly further. The research we do should give us better strategies to improve comfort and well-being on the road." .
The next test flight will take place in November, from London to Sydney, with another New York flight to Sydney before the end of the year.
Qantas has said it hopes to launch three-city direct flights to Australia's east coast – Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane – and New York and London by 2022 or 2023.
Captain John Golding said: "Overall, we're really happy with how the flight went and it's great to have some of the data we need to help make this a regular service."
How will passengers be monitored?
Researchers from the Charles Perkins Center, the University of Sydney, Monash University and the Center for Security and Productivity Research and Cooperation – an Australian government-backed science program – will examine the impact of long-haul flights on those aboard.
Passengers in the main cab were wearing cheerleaders, and experts at the Charles Perkins Center will learn how it impacted their "health, well-being and body clock" by a set of variables that include lighting, food and beverages, movement, patterns sleep and entertainment in the light.
Persons were advised to keep a daily log of their flight guidance and, after two weeks, to show how they felt and how they dealt with aircraft delays.
Pilots and cabin crew will also keep sleep diaries. The cameras were mounted in the cockpit to record the pilot's vigilance.
"People seem to be wildly different when it comes to the jetlag experience – and we need more research on what contributes to Shetlag and travel fatigue, so we can try and reduce the impact of departing flights. distance, "said Professor Steven Simpson, academic director of the Charles Perkins Center at the University of Sydney, CNN Travel said.
"We have a long way to go in understanding how a wide range of impacts – including nutrition, hydration, exercise, sleep and light – could work together for maximum benefit."
Monash University scientists will focus on flight crews, recording their melatonin levels before, during and after flights, as well as studying brain wave data from pilots carrying electroencephalographic devices.
This information will then be shared with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority "to help inform regulatory requirements related to ultralight flights," Cantas said in a statement.
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