Qantas has completed a 19-hour test flight from New York to Sydney, the first non-stop commercial flight between the destinations.
The flight, which landed in Sydney on Sunday morning (20 October), was flown to allow the Australian carrier to measure the affects of the "ultra-long-haul" service on crew and passengers.
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner’s journey with 49 passengers marks the world’s longest flight at 19 hours and 16 minutes.
Tests carried out during the flight ranged from monitoring pilot brain waves, melatonin levels and alertness, through to exercise classes for passengers.
Next month, Qantas plans to test a non-stop flight from London to Sydney and expects to decide on whether to start the routes by the end of 2019.
If it goes ahead with them, the services would commence operating in 2022 or 2023.
Qantas Group chief executive Alan Joyce said: “This is a really significant first for aviation. Hopefully, it’s a preview of a regular service that will speed up how people travel from one side of the globe to the other.
“We know ultra-long-haul flights pose some extra challenges but that’s been true every time technology has allowed us to fly further. The research we’re doing should give us better strategies for improving comfort and wellbeing along the way.
“Night flights usually start with dinner and then lights off. For this flight, we started with lunch and kept the lights on for the first six hours, to match the time of day at our destination. It means you start reducing the jet-lag straight away.
“What’s already clear is how much time you can save. Our regular, one-stop New York to Sydney service (QF12) took off three hours before our direct flight, but we arrived a few minutes ahead of it, meaning we saved a significant amount of total travel time by not having to stop.”