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Qantas Reveals Project Sunrise A350 cabin

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Qantas has revealed how it plans to keep travellers comfortable, even in economy, when it starts flying direct from Sydney to New York and London from late 2025. The airline also released world-first scientific research on reducing jet lag and improving sleep and overall wellbeing before, during and after ultra long-haul flights.

The Qantas Project Sunrise flights will cut down point-to-point travel time by more than three hours compared to routes with one stop. 

By reducing the number of seats onboard the Airbus A350 to 300 plus to 238 Qantas can maximise aircraft performance during ultra long haul flights and improve passenger comfort for up to 22 hours nonstop.

Wellbeing Zone between the Premium Economy and Economy cabins

Fewer seats translate to more space for each customer and a dedicated Wellbeing Zone for travellers to stretch, help themselves to a snack and spend time out of their seat.

Qantas says it’s the first airline in the world to offer a purpose-built Wellbeing Zone located between the Premium Economy and Economy cabins featuring sculpted wall panels and integrated stretch handles, guided on-screen exercise program, a hydration station and a range of refreshments.

Qantas Economy

The 40-seat Premium Economy cabin and the 140-seat Economy cabin will thankfully have the greatest seat pitches of any Qantas aircraft. Those in the back will have 33-inches of legroom.

Premium Economy

Every seat across all four cabins will feature multiple fast USB-C charging ports and every premium seat will also have integrated wireless charging. The Qantas A350 fleet will offer free WiFi, and Bluetooth connectivity. All passengers will be able to connect their personal headset to the individual inflight entertainment screen.

The aircraft will have six large enclosed First Suites designed to feel like a mini boutique hotel room with 2 metre flat bed, dining table for two, separate recliner chair and a 32” 4k ultra-high definition touch screen TV.

The 52 Business Suites will feature sliding doors for additional privacy, lay flat bed, large dining table, bespoke lighting and 18” 4K touch screen TV.

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Aviation

Avoid Flying into Trouble – Get to Know Your Camera Settings as Qantas Bans Photos of Staff and Passengers without Permission

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Travellers are being urged to check their camera settings and capabilities before flying this summer. The advice comes after Qantas quietly banned the taking of photos or videos of staff and passengers without their permission.   

In the video above I explain to Jaynie Seal on Sky News Weekend Edition why camera settings matter. It has to do with how wide you shoot and how deep your depth-of-field is. If you shoot with a wide angle lens you could end up capturing the flight crew but most likely fellow passengers. This is against the rules. It’s OK to video or photograph yourself or travelling group and outside the window but the Qantas rule about in-flight photography says you must get permission from everyone else.

“seek consent before filming or photographing Qantas Group staff, contractors or other customers”

QANTAS Conditions of Carriage
Last updated: 8 November 2023

If you shoot with a GoPro you’ll probably have a very wide angle view so be wary of that. You can narrow this FOV in the settings. Also – depth of field should be shallow – which means the background is out of focus. This won’t happen on a GoPro or similar action camera with a fixed focus lens. Essentially everything is in focus.

Your phone’s tiny sensor will suffer from the same problem. Many have a fixed-focus selfie camera lens, but even those without it, will still keep many people in focus. Phones do fake background blur but this isn’t good enough, as it is adjustable in most cases after the shot is taken.

By understanding how your camera works, you are more likely to avoid scrutiny from cabin crew and other passengers. If you break the rules it could lead to your phone being confiscated, something you agree to in the conditions of carriage.

“use electronic devices (excluding hearing aids and heart pacemakers) when and as directed and in the case of any failure to comply with the direction we may retain the device”

QANTAS Conditions of Carriage
Last updated: 8 November 2023

I can understand why Qantas wants to protect the privacy or aircrew and passengers but I think another big reason is they just don’t want viral videos of in-flight chaos. These can be embarrassing but they could also provide crucial evidence if crew members were assaulted – for example.

Similar rules are in place around the world but that hasn’t stopped viral videos of cabin incidents, especially in the US.

Most aircrew and passengers don’t understand how cameras really work so I’m concerned that people looking to ‘bust’ happy snappers will get it wrong. For example, a couple takes a shot against the fuselage and the passenger behind them protests thinking they are in shot. When, in reality, there was no way that was possible given the angle. This stuff happens all the time when I am shooting out and about. The camera might even be facing away from the disgruntled member of the public and yet they still aggressively ask, “are you photographing me?”

Travel vloggers are going to struggle big time.  They often just walk around recording everyone and everything. So maybe this isn’t so bad.

I’ll also point out that this has not been well publicised by Qantas. I’ve spoken to travel agents who didn’t even know about it. If it’s possible for people to get in trouble with a new rule then they should know about it before flying. Let’s face it, no one is going to read the lengthy conditions of carriage each time they fly. Any change like this should be well publicised.

So that’s why I’m covering it today.

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Aviation

STARSHIP LAUNCH DELAYED

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The launch of SpaceX’s second fully integrated Starship test flight has been delay by one day.

Elon Musk said in an X post, “We need to replace a grid fin actuator, so launch is postponed to Saturday.”

Grid fins are needed to guide the booster on its return to earth.

SpaceX made a number of upgrades to the vehicle and ground infrastructure following the first integrated Starship/Heavy configuration test flight in April.

The initial two-hour launch window that was scheduled to open at 7:00 a.m. CT. Friday (Midnight AEST) is now Saturday CT.

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Aviation

Starship Ready to Launch as SpaceX Receives Clearance

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The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) has cleared SpaceX to proceed with the launch of its second flight test of a fully integrated Starship.

Starship reached an altitude of 39km in the first test flight

SpaceX made a number of upgrades to the vehicle and ground infrastructure following the first integrated Starship/Heavy configuration test flight in April.

Starship reached an altitude of 39 kilometres over the Gulf of Mexico before an self-destruct command was given. Troubles began when leaking propellant ignited, leading to loss of communications to the majority of booster engines.

There was also work to be done on the ground. The launch pad essentially designated under the enormous thrust of the Super Heavy engines. Chunks of concrete were sent flying for kilometres. SpaceX has since made reinforcements to the pad foundation and added a water-cooled steel flame deflector.

 SpaceX made reinforcements to the pad foundation and a water-cooled steel flame deflector

Following approval from the FAA, which also required a report from and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Starship is set to launch on Friday, November 17.

A two-hour launch window opens at 7:00 a.m. CT. (Midnight AEST)

If Elon Musk’s team pull this off, it will super-charge the modern space race.

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