Qantas launches Project Sunrise and challenges Boeing and Airbus

Qantas has launched its Project Sunrise and challenges both Boeing and Airbus to develop an aircraft that is able to connect the East Coast of Australia with London, New York, Paris and Rio.

Qantas has always looked to the horizon. It has always pushed boundaries and flown further to connect Australians to each other and Australians to the world.

The original kangaroo route from Australian to London took 4 days and stopped seven times. Forty years later, this was reduced to just 20 hours and one stop. As from March 2018, with the introduction of the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner into the fleet and the opening of the airline’s new non-stop Perth-London flight, it will be reduced even further to just 17 hours in a single hop.

Along the way, the airline has made the journey more comfortable. From inventing business class in 1979 to working with scientists to reduce jetlag in 2017.

Today, Qantas is setting its sight on the next frontier: non-stop flights from the East Coast of Australia to London, New York, Paris and Rio de Janeiro, by 2022.

From To Distance
Sydney (SYD) London (LHR) 9.188 nm
Sydney (SYD) New York (JFK) 8.647 nm
Sydney (SYD) Paris (CDG) 9.148 nm
Sydney (SYD) Rio de Janeiro (GRU) 7.229 nm

The airline has challenged the world’s two biggest airline manufacturers Boeing and Airbus, to extend the range of their next generation aircraft to put these direct flights within reach. This would save travellers up to four hours of travel time in the process.

The project was given the name ‘Project Sunrise’, named after the legendary double sunrise flights Qantas flew during the Second World War across the Indian Ocean. These flights lasted long enough to see two sunrises.

25 August 2017


  1. Wasn’t the A340-500 developed to cover such distances? If I remember well, its range was some 9,000 nm.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.