Qantas to run 19-hour test flights to see impact on people's health


The Qantas Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft on December 15, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia.

James D. Morgan | Getty Images

If you are nervous about flying, this one might not be for you. Qantas on Thursday said it's going to run "research" flights from London and New York to Sydney – to 19-hour route – to see how it affects passengers' health.

The Australian airline said it would contain a maximum of 40 people. That includes crew members and a research team on board who will look at things like sleep patterns and food consumption "to assess impact on health, wellbeing and body clock."

Qantas said that passengers – who is mostly staff – will be fitted with wearable devices to run tests throughout the flights. The company says it has already conducted experimental flights along its direct Perth to London service.

Boeing's 787-9 aircraft will be used for the tests, and Qantas said both Boeing and its European competitor Airbus are pitching jets for the long-haul routes. A final decision on whether to run the flights will be made by the end of the year, Qantas said.

To be clear, Qantas said. The purpose of the move is to make such journeys if you started selling them to customers.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce told CNBC's "Capital Connection" on Thursday. "It's really the first time."

"It allows us to test out fatigue risk management, the impact on customers and employees and allows us to help develop the case for these operations," he added.

The company hopes to have the New York-Sydney and London-Sydney direct routes up and running by 2022.



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