Qantas could launch the Sunrise Project in early 2024.
Qantas wants to launch the Sunrise Project in early 2024. The project includes direct flights between Sydney and the metropolises of London and New York, being considered the longest flights an aircraft could operate. We are talking here about non-stop flights of 18-20 hours.
Qantas has suspended the Sunrise Project in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, just a few weeks before placing the initial order for the Airbus A350-1000. But Qantas did not give up on that plan, and the aircraft would be used for flights between Sydney and London or New York.
The A350-1000 aircraft scheduled for the Sunrise Project will have a special design.
It was rumored that the aircraft will include six private apartments in First Class. These will be spacious, located in a 1-1-1 configuration, similar to those found in Boeing 777 Emirates aircraft.
There will also be larger cabins for Business and Premium Economy classes, but also larger spaces for all passengers, including economy class. Economy seats will have a new design and will provide more legroom.
However, the Boeing 787-9 with which Qantas flew between Perth and London has only 236 seats, compared to the nearly 300 seats offered by Air Canada or Air New Zealand using 787 Dreamliner aircraft, structured in 3 classes. .
The inaugural flights of the Sunrise Project will be able to take off somewhere in the middle of 2023
According to Alan Joyce, CEO Qantas, the inaugural flights of the Sunrise Project they will be able to take off somewhere in the middle of 2023. This term was set after the specialists in the field declared that the aviation industry will start to recover starting from 2023.
Joyce also expects the Sunrise Project flight network to support a "sub-fleet" of aircraft, specially configured to handle these extremely long flights.
"We have three major cities on the east coast of Australia - Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. If we have flights to London, Frankfurt, Paris, New York, Chicago, Rio de Janeiro, Cape Town, we can create a significant and economical sub-fleet that would work very well."
The Sunrise project could eclipse stopover flights, flights operated with large Airbus A380 aircraft, and Qantas could switch to operation with smaller aircraft such as the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
But Joyce said any plane would stay in the fleet as long as it made money. Qantas currently holds the 12 A380 aircraft on the ground and has no chance of returning to flight earlier than 3 years. And as the situation is planned, we don't even think they will return to flight.