Qantas tests longest non-stop flight



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Qantas Longest Flight

The crew celebrates after landing in Sydney.

Qantas Longest Flight

Ready for departure from New York.

SYDNEY, Australia – Australia’s national carrier has successfully tested the longest non-stop commercial passenger flight.

The Boeing 787-9, carrying 49 passengers and crew, flew from New York to Sydney in 19 hours 16 minutes.

“This is a really significant first for aviation,” said Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce.

“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.”

The airline said the flight was used to run a series of experiments to assess health and well-being onboard.

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

Data from the experiments will be used help shape the crew rostering and customer service of Qantas’ ultra long haul flights in future, the airline added.

“We had a lot of interest from air traffic controllers as we crossed through different airspace because of the uniqueness of this flight,” said Capt. Sean Golding, who led the four pilots operating the service.

“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.”

Qantas has plans for two more research flights – London to Sydney in November, and New York to Sydney in December.

Currently, Singapore Airlines operates the longest commercial flight — from Singapore to New York, which takes 18 hours and 25 minutes.

Airbus biz jets are now just a click away


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Airbus ACJLAS VEGAS, Nev. – Airbus has teamed up with 12 Airbus Corporate Jet operators worldwide to make VIP travel smooth.

Under a plan unveiled this week, Airbus jets can be chartered from any of the operators through the dedicated website.

The site was launched at the National Business Aviation Association’s Conference and Exhibition in Las Vegas.

“The new website will appeal to VIP travelers because it groups together in a single place information about the Airbus corporate jet offerings of 12 operators such as details of their spacious cabins, characteristics and tailored on-board services,” Airbus said.

“Its simplicity enables users to find details about each ACJ VIP charter offering in a single click.”

ACJ operator fleets include the ACJ318, ACJ319, ACJ320 and ACJ340.

“For the first time, we connect business jet travelers to ACJ operators – just click to book a unique flying experience,” said ACJ president Benoit Defforge.

The participating airlines are:

  • Acropolis Aviation
  • AirX Charter
  • Comlux
  • Constellation Aviation
  • Emirates
  • Eva Air
  • Global Jet
  • K5 Aviation
  • MasterJet
  • MJet
  • Nomad Aviation
  • Tyrolean Jet ServiceACJACJACJAll images are courtesy of Airbus Corporate Jets.


Pilatus unwraps the PC-12 NGX


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PC-12 NGX PC-12 NGX LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Swiss aircraft maker Pilatus has unveiled its new single-engine turboprop – the PC-12 NGX – at the National Business Aviation Association’s Convention and Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) in Las Vegas.

The PC-12 NGX incorporates an improved engine, smarter avionics and a completely redesigned cabin with larger windows, making this third generation of the PC-12 airframe the most advanced single-engine turboprop ever, the company said.

“Building on the experience gathered from the worldwide PC-12 fleet of over 1,700 aircraft with more than 7 million flight hours, the new PC-12 NGX brings the latest technology to the turboprop market.”

The aircraft is powered by the PT6E-67XP turboprop engine from Pratt & Whitney Canada.



Embraer strikes $1.4b deal at NBAA show


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The Praetor 600


Michael Amalfitano (left), CEO of Embraer Executive Jets and Michael Silvestro, CEO of Flexjet, celebrate the US$1.4 billion deal.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Embraer has won the first major deal of the National Business Aviation Association’s Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) in Las Vegas.

The Brazilian aircraft maker announced Monday that it had signed a US$1.4-billion agreement with private jet travel services provider Flexjet.

The deal comprises a fleet of Embraer business jets, including the recently certified Praetor jets and the Phenom 300, with deliveries starting in the fourth quarter of 2019.

With this purchase agreement, Flexjet has become the Praetor fleet launch customer, Embraer said.

“We are very grateful for Flexjet’s renewed commitment to Embraer through this new agreement, which reflects the growth and the strength of our partnership over the past 16 years and symbolizes our ongoing support for their journey ahead,” said Michael Amalfitano, president & CEO of Embraer Executive Jets.

“Flexjet owners will appreciate and enjoy a truly elevated customer experience in industry-leading aircraft, including the recently certified Praetor jets, which are different by design and disruptive by choice.”


All images are courtesy of Embraer.

NBAA show focuses on sustainability


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NBAA-BACELAS VEGAS, Nev. – Sustainability is the main focus of this week’s Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) in Las Vegas.

As part of the show, Henderson Executive Airport will for the first time in its history make available Sustainable Aviation Fuel, the National Business Aviation Association said.

“Some 100 airplanes will take on the renewable fuel at the Clark County-owned and operated airport this week, including those on display at the show.”

SAF is a non-fossil power source that can reduce aviation’s carbon lifecycle emissions by up to 80 percent.

“After planes refuel and depart at the show’s close Oct. 24, an estimated 150,000 gallons of SAF are expected to have been pumped at the airport in conjunction with NBAA’s convention,” the NBAA said.

The NBAA is also holding various events throughout the week to promote sustainability.

‘Jetman’ to inspire delegates at NBAA event


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“Jetman” Yves Rossy

“Jetman” Yves Rossy speaks at EBACE 2018 in Geneva.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – The first man to fly with a jet-propelled wing will be among the key speakers at this year’s National Business Aviation Association convention and exhibition, which opens in Las Vegas on Oct. 21, the group announced.

“Jetman” Yves Rossy is the inventor of the so-called jet packs. The Swiss fighter pilot has been a sought-after speaker at aviation events since he first flew them in 2006.

Rossy enthralled the audience at the opening of the European Business Aviation convention and exhibition in Geneva in 2018.

“We are delighted to have ‘Jetman’ Yves Rossy speak at NBAA-BACE,” said NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen.

“His talk is sure to thrill and inspire attendees about possibilities for the future of flight. The ability to fly is one of the most fundamental human aspirations, and we’re looking forward to hearing Rossy’s motivational stories.”

Other major speakers include NBA legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Maj.-Gen. Jeannie Leavitt, America’s first female fighter pilot.

Photo by Abdul Latheef


Airbus celebrates a major milestone


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AirbusThe first Airbus aircraft, an A300B2, was delivered to Air France in 1974. Forty-five years on, Airbus is celebrating the delivery of its 12,000th aircraft.

The Airbus A220-100, previously known as the Bombardier CS100, was assembled in Mirabel, Canada, and handed over to Delta Air Lines on Monday.

Delta received its first A220 last October. The aircraft delivered on Monday was its 12th. The airline has placed a firm order for 90 A220s.


Images are courtesy of Airbus.

Coming soon: AS2 supersonic business jet

Aerion_AS2_NewYork_LRAerion Supersonic received a major boost on Tuesday when Boeing announced “a significant” investment in the company to bring the first supersonic business aircraft to the market.

The Aerion AS2 is designed to fly at speeds of up to Mach 1.4 or about 1,600 kilometers an hour, saving three hours on a transatlantic flight, the two companies said. First test flight is slated for 2023.

Aerion_AS2_Vertical1_LRThe 12-passenger jet was announced in 2014 by Aerion, a company founded in 2003. The aircraft will be powered by a GE Affinity engine.

“Aerion is the industry leader mapping out a successful, sustainable return to supersonic flight,” said Tom Vice, chairman, president and CEO.

“The AS2 is the launch point for the future of regulatory-compliant and efficient supersonic flight. Together with Boeing, we’re creating a faster, more connected future with tremendous possibilities for enhancing humanity’s productivity and potential.”

Steve Nordlund, vice-president and general manager of Boeing NeXt, called the agreement a strategic investment in further maturing supersonic technology.

“Through this partnership that combines Aerion’s supersonic expertise with Boeing’s global industrial scale and commercial aviation experience, we have the right team to build the future of sustainable supersonic flight.”


Images are courtesy of Aerion


Bombardier steals the show with new jets


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_DSC9351Bombardier has added two more aircraft to its Global family of business jets that the company says will deliver “unmatched total performance”.

The Global 5500 and the Global 6500 were launched ahead of this week’s opening of the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition, EBACE 2018, in Geneva.


David Coleal

“Bombardier’s two newest Global aircraft are the result of our unrelenting commitment to innovation, excellence and most of all, our desire to deliver unmatched capabilities to our customers,” said David Coleal, president of Bombardier Business Aircraft, as he unveiled the Global 6500 at a TAG Aviation hangar on Sunday.


The Rolls-Royce Pearl

The Global 5500 can connect Sao Paulo and Paris, and Moscow and Los Angeles while the Global 6500 can connect Hong Kong or Singapore and London, and Toluca and Madrid, the company said.

An all-new Rolls-Royce engine will power the aircraft. The jets are expected to enter service at the end of 2019.

All photos are by Abdul Latheef

‘JetBook is the jewel in our crown’


Antonia Lukacinova: Experiencing HondaJet

The Czech high-flier behind the Sapphire Pegasus business aviation awards is now making headlines as the author of JetBook.

The latest edition of the luxury aircraft and helicopter guide will be unveiled at the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition, EBACE 2018, in Geneva next week ahead of its official release in summer.

“Aviation has always been a huge passion of mine, and JetBook is a book that helps the industry by making it easier to fulfill people’s dreams of owning a private jet or helicopter,” Antonia Lukacinova said.

Book“There is no other guide on the market that offers such a comprehensive overview of the industry today.”

The 232-page book features 55 business jets and 20 helicopters as well as exclusive photos and interviews.

“JetBook is the jewel in our crown. We intend to support it with a wealth of up-to-date articles and information about the latest aircraft, along with lifestyle articles in our upcoming JetBook Life series,” said Lukacinova, who has been working in business aviation in the Czech Republic since 2004.

SaphireShe also founded the Sapphire Pegasus Awards, which honors outstanding performances by companies and individuals in business aviation.

This year’s awards will be announced at EBACE on Tuesday. The winners were chosen from 74 nominees via an online ballot by more than 60,000 voters.

Photos are courtesy of Media Tribune and Sapphire Pegasus.