Air India launches world’s longest non-stop flight
Air India has taken the title of the world’s longest non-stop flight with a revised route between Delhi and San Francisco.
The route had been second in the ranking of greatest distances flown by a passenger planes, but by changing the direction of travel from crossing to the Atlantic to the Pacific, India’s national carrier has added 1,400 kilometres (870 miles) to the route to secure top spot.
The new route spans a total of 15,300 kilometres (9,506 miles), beating the previous record – held by Emirates’ Dubai-Auckland route – by 1,180km (681 miles). Better yet, despite being longer, the easterly route takes less time – the 86mph tailwinds of the Jet Stream helping the airline to knock two hours off the flight time, covering the distance in 14.5 hours.
Speaking to the Times of India, an Air India official said: “Flying west means facing strong headwinds, that decrease an aircraft’s actual ground speed, and flying east means getting strong tailwinds, which do the opposite.”
The record for the longest non-stop flight is not set to last long, as Singapore Airlines is planning to reinstate its Singapore-New York route – a journey of 16,500km (10,252 miles).