Project Sunrise to use Airbus fleet for 20-hour non-stop flight

Qantas has announced an order for 12 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft to fly a landmark new route non-stop from Sydney to London. Planned for 2025, the route marks a new era in Qantas' long-haul offering. It is the first time travellers will be able to fly from Sydney to the UK's capital and other ultra-long-haul destinations without a stop-over.

Dubbed Project Sunrise, the new service will be flown using a dedicated fleet of A350-1000s. In its statement, Qantas emphasised its intention to offer class-leading passenger comfort. Hamburg's Airbus facility will manufacture fuselage segments, the wingbox and empennage for the aircraft.

Coinciding with the announcement of Project Sunrise, Qantas also revealed a major fleet renewal programme for its domestic routes, ordering 20 A321XLR and 20 A220 aircraft scheduled to enter service from late 2023. All A321XLR aircraft will be see final assembly at the Airbus facility in Hamburg. Airbus' game-changing A321XLR jet finally brings long-haul travel to the single-aisle segment, with 4,700nm range and 25% less fuel consumption than previous aircraft generations.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce commented: “New types of aircraft make new things possible. That’s what makes today’s announcement so significant for the national carrier and for a country like Australia where air travel is crucial.

“Throughout our history, the aircraft we’ve flown have defined the era we’re in. The 707 introduced the jet age, the 747 democratised travel and the A380 brought a completely new level of comfort. The A350 and Project Sunrise will make any city just one flight away from Australia. It’s the last frontier and the final fix for the tyranny of distance. As you’d expect, the cabin is being specially designed for maximum comfort in all classes for long-haul flying.

“The A320s and A220s will become the backbone of our domestic fleet for the next 20 years, helping to keep this country moving. Their range and economics will make new direct routes possible, including serving regional cities better.

“These newer aircraft and engines will reduce emissions by at least 15 per cent if running on fossil fuels, and significantly better when run on Sustainable Aviation Fuel. This order brings us closer to our commitment to reach net zero emissions by 2050. Project Sunrise will be carbon neutral from day one.

via: Qantas