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Qantas #8 from DFW to BNE can't make the nonstop for a second day

Second day in a row, QFA8 doesn't make it nonstop back to Australia. This route has been plagued with range problems due to aircraft performance/capacity. ( More...

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jeremiah long 0
it could if they woulf try the a-380 it has a range of 8,300 miles thats what they should do . flight mentioned has 7,400 miles so the a-380 has 900 miles to spare ...:)
Fleagle 0
Introduce some MARVEL MYSTERY OIL in the crankcases.
Michael Yockey 0
I don't see how you'r able to ascertain the result of the flight from the link. FA loses tracking on Qantas 8 over the Pacific and the arrival times and locations aren't posted.
Roger McHugh 0
Someone should mail an E6B to Qantas.
hardworker7 0
Quantas is using the wrong aircraft. A 777 w/standard tanks could make it non-stop bucking that jet stream @ flt level. And a slightly more northerly track (closer to Hawaii) would keep it away from that jet for a longer time.
Kawaiipoint2 0
@hardworker7- Its spelled Qantas... and Qantas does not own any 777s. but you do bring up good points about the jetstream
sking100 0
It looks like the aircraft didn't get up high enough to where the fuel efficiency of those engines can come into play. Looks like they never got above FL300. Either the winds up higher were horrible or someone stayed down too long after departure. Would have rather pulled the power back a little to increase range, or gotten a faster climb to altitude. May have made the difference.
hardworker7 0
I apologize for my spelling of Qantas. Perhaps V-Australia would've been a better choice of carrier since they do own 777s. I understand the new 747-8's range is comparable to the 777 also!
Eve Olson 0
I'm flying that route back home in 6 weeks. I'll let you know what happens.
if you look at CRWs you can see there is a large jetstream, but It can be avoided like hardworker 7 said. why not fly over honolulu, Micornesia and cross the equator over Paupa new guinea? It would probably add 45 minuites to the standard flight, you must need and extra hour to 1.5 hours of reserve fuel for deviations and holding pattern so thats a plan is it not? better than ending up in a different country...
Joseph Henley 0
I wish DFW could accomodate an a380. But it can't right now because airport runways and taxi ways have to be a certain width for an a380 to taxi on and DFW doesn't make the cut right now. Hopefully sometime in the future an a380 will fly into and out of North Texas.
Dylan0 0
The route is actually designed for the A380's, which are currently unavailable for it, the 747's were being used to publicize it.
preacher1 0
DFW can make the cut; they just have not applied as no Airline has asked for it. As DylanO says, the route is designed for an A380 and Quantas can't get them for it. Those few they do have are all committed. As far as the other comments; we weren't looking out their windshield AND it may be the computer talking as far as generating the flight path/plan
Toby Sharp 0
I think we can sum it all up and say.....stuff happens.....but in a cockpit, especially a 747 cockpit, they should know about it before they ever take off. and I watched that airplane take off, talk about using every inch of that long 18L to get airborne!
preacher1 0
In spite of everything, and regarding Toby's comment here, there was obviously something more here than met the eye. You would think that as high a profile as that route carries and having aleady had several diversions and problems, that sombody would be paying attention to these details, not the least of which would be the flight crew.Even on a hot day with a full load, 18L is 13,400', and they should have been able to get in the air before then.
David Pepper 0
What Qantas should do is to order a Boeing 777-300ER and since it can go 9380 miles, it would have the capacity and almost 2,000 miles to spare.
preacher1 0
Coulda, shoulda, woulda. BUT, they got their nose up Airbus's butt or vice versa. Push come to shove, there ought to be some 777's available from a leasing company somewhere and besides that, according to a log last week, they(Boeing)weren't that far out on production. Like anything else, some bean counter just looked at miles and didn't take mother nature into account.
Mark Duell 0
A380 won't make it with a full payload either. Worst case winds puts the ESAD over 8000nm.
chalet 0
Hardworder 7, thanks for the tip, I am the designated B 777 Boeing salesman for Qantes and I going to contact them ASAP trying to sell them a few aircraft. If I succeed I would like to invite you, wife and up to 6 children (no maids or pet dogs, please) for a full week in Hawaii, all expenses paid, :) LOL!
Paul Claxon 0
Take a train ! lol
agg1930 0
If Chalet is really the designated saleman for "Qantes" (sp) what has he been doing all along? You certainly should not wait for "tips" from outsiders to do your job! Shame! although I cannot believe he is for real.
preacher1 0
I was gonna say something to that effect but didn't. I got a hard time with that for that same reason, agg1930. A major Airline and he has to take an outside tip to find out they ain't flying a 777???????????????????
If he is, ain't no wonder Boeing is getting their butt kicked!!!!!!!!!
chalet 0
agg1930 and preacher1, GOTCHA BOTH!!!!!! LOL. I have absolutely nothing to do with Boeing, they have a huge operation in Australia dating back to the 1960s handling sales of new aircraft both civil and military, Field Tech Offices supporting all aircraft; they also have manufacturing facilities. There is no way that the real Boeing salesmen had not tried to sell the 777 to Qantas even before its first flight 17 years ago. Bye bye.
hardworker7 0
Just logged in. WOW look at the comments! FedExCargoPilot and i, it seems, are on the same "flt plan." A 744 cant consistently make that route non-stop flying directly. They have to stay north to avoid that jet, then drop down to get below the equator and catch the easterlies. In the winter months, the pineapple express changes all the above. V-Australia should've gotten that route!
Eve Olson 0
qantas has a lot of complaints from pilots saying they are under pressure to reduce the ammount they fly with.
toolguy105 0
Given the recent heat wave plaguing the mid west; they may have had to sacrifice some fuel in order to just get airborne. I remember back when I was in the Air Force and flying airborne alert in B52's out of Beale AFB in the summer. We would take off with enough fuel to reach a tanker and still used every inch of runway and the overrun to get in the air.

While the jet stream may be a problem on some days, takeoff weight is also a factor. The ability to land short a refuel gives the crew options from point of departure to destination. No need to arrive over station and declare a fuel emergency.

One would think if this was an every day problem Qantas would look into leasing a trip 7 or possibly change the departure time to a cooler part of the day.
paul ferreira 0
and thats why fedex drop the a 380 due to its range and payload .
toolguy105 0
@Paul; FedEx cancelled their A380 order mainly because of the production delays. They were able to get B767s much faster then the delayed freighter versions of the A380. I am not aware of range or payload problems with Fedex's decision to cancel the order.
mark halden 0
It has always been a balancing act of fuel, people, cargo, weather and available runway and always will be no matter what you fly. Weight is your enemy. Posted for those who don't fly.
Rpalmqui 0
And for those who do fly, i.e. passengers, "wait" is your enemy. I'm sure there were a few annoyed rate payers who were miffed at an unplanned layover/transfer.
toolguy105 0
@Mark, You said it All.
Brent Vegors 0
This is an issue which should easily be resolved. The new 747-800 would easily be able to take the route as should the A-380. GREAT route just need different aircraft. I would take the route BUT I am paying for a NON-STOP!
alex hidveghy 0
Yea, does seem like the "wrong" aircraft fir this route.

And for those who are spelling challenged, here's a little history lesson. Qantas is the Australian national carrier with a long history. The name is an acronym for Queensland And Northern Territories Air Service.....
Brent Vegors 0
Alex, thanks for pointing that out to the spelling challenged! I too actually agree they probably just are dealing with unusually strong headwinds and are probably being told to keep the fuel load to the extreme minimum. Thanks again for explaining the abbreviation. HOPEFULLY it will help!
A 777 on DFW-BNE and DFW-SYD require more than ETOPS-180 to fly it:

And this map is only great circle and doesn't take into account prevailing winds - they wouldn't be able to take a more southernly route for the favorable tracks there.

Someone else can correct me, but I believe CASA has only certified up to ETOPS-180 so far.
Brian Bishop 0
Did anybody here REALLY think Chalet was a Boeing Salesman? :)
alistairm 0
I did a quick search on Google and did not come up with any article talking about this. Daniel, aside from the flight tracking map, any other evidence you can provide? Where does the flight land?
Michel Bitton 0
I don't understand Quantas' logic here. They insist on using the 747-400 which clearly arrives on fumes to its destination, and sometimes has to make a refueling stop. There are numerous aircrafts that can easily accomplish this trip nonstop: B777-200 ER/LR, Airbus A340-600, A380.
alistairm 0
Alright, now i see it in the activity log;)
john karas 0
I am shocked an Airbus product is not quite up to the task of the range and load promised. LOL
AirShepherd 0
From a safety standpoint, this is a small win and a big warning. The pilots had enough courage/sense to buck the culture and divert from a high profile (politically speaking) flight plan. But it reveals the ugly bottom-dollar thinking of some in the airlines -- drift into failure. Continued chipping away at the safety margins on a flight like this is a near guarantee of disaster.
Matt Lacey 0
How often does this happen? I was on a DL 757 4-5 years ago MCO-LAX that had to stop in ONT for a splash and go.
rvmillman 0
You have to take a few hits, as a retired aircraft dispatcher another
case of management not discussing there choice of aircraft on a route.
DFW- hot, hot, matter how long the runways are, when its hot,
or not! RVM
chalet 0
Airlines do whatever they want only if the authorities allow them to. In the 80s Braniff used B727-200 to fly "non-s" stop UIO (altitude 9200 ft. AMSL) to MIA a distance of only 1,570 NM. Most of the flights had to refuel in PTY or Jamaica. Passengers lodgeded strong claims with the Ecuadorian Civil Aviation authority and BN promtly changed to Douglas DC-8-62s. After BN folded Eastern took over the routes and when using Lockheed L-1011s and the house was full, no way they could do it non-stop so they refueled in Panama and Jamaica; again irrate passengers including your truly (I commuted this route some 10-12 times a year) took this to the Ecuadorian Authority (the FAA did not anything in those years) Eastern switched to 757s. In both instances the airlines were risking heavy fines for not meeting their promises to fly non-stop. If Qantas is not meeting theirs, go to the authorities both US and Australia and let's see what they do to avoid fines and penalties. If you don't sream loud enough, nothing will move.
Marcus Pradel 0
Call me a cynic, but is this just the Qantas pilots 'hitting' back at the airline amides contract negotiations? There was a squawk here earlier in the week about making poor-us announcements to the passengers..
yeah they are telling the passengers of all there problems,enroute,this way they have a CAPTIVE audience,rather than striking,at the moment
Wayne Jeffrey 0
QFA does have some 787's on order. One would assume that this was supposed to be the aircraft that they wanted to use on that route, but with the delivery delays they were forced to use their older 747's.
Scott McLeod 0
Due to the minimum fuel requirements Qantas asks of their pilots, I would not at all be surprised if this was a silent protest by the pilots to carry minimum fuel and purposly divert, hence costing the airline more money and and highlighting their concerns regarding minimum fuel requirements.
Josh Ramos 0
There is more to just planning a straight line on these trips. As a flight dispatcher etops, etp's, pnr's, specific routing, and Wx are all contributing factors. Following great circle is not a possible route due to these parameters.
Fleagle 0
I stand with AIR SHEPHERD. It wouldn't BE The First Time.

The Big boys need to knock it off, get real, and purchase appropriate Gear. This isn't Alchemy. Flight Crews aren't magicians. The Laws of Nature are Immutable.
Hurrah! for the stalwart Pilots that Stand by their Personal, on-scene Numbers and arrive SAFE... for - with Those they've been Entrusted with. Even if it's just Boxes. YOU ARE TO BE APPLAUDED.

@SPEEDBIRD. . . too bad it turns into: A " Them or Us " with Bean Counters. GREAT to see Pilots Cohesive to ' send The Message '( *if* - that BE, the Case ).
It's not Always like that; and it Wasn't always like that. The Old and Senior Management were ex-Drivers at one time.That's when it was a Team and a Family not just a 'business venture'. No Loyalty involved.
The New bunch are straight from University with an enviable Pay envelope and 'business man' prestige. They know SQUAT about a Jetstream,EPRs,Vref. or the tension that comes with squeezing Fuel - figuring Wx. to Make the commitment to completing the Mission.
Nor is it In their Ledgers,sums & Equations .

@ CHALET . . . Where The Rubber meets the Road,"Miss", The AUTHORITY Is In The LEFT SEAT. Up Front .
Airlines DON'T- " DO, whatever They Want to".
Presuming you're an old Colleague of an unsavory (deadly 'numbers' Gent by the name of DiLorenzo, a choir boy / alter boy - in appearance & comportment who Destroyed EASTERN AIRLINES? How about T.W.A.?
Wallace Berry 0
50's Qantas guy to SPEEDBIRD Too true
davemc380 0
I can tell you there's no 'protest' min fuel ordering going on here. The airplane just simply won't make it under the current environmental conditions (winds, etc). The A380 *could* make it, but the pavement strength in DFW isn't high enough to allow the operation, so it's the 744 or nothing.

With respect to the 'captive audience' PA being made, here it is in FULL. You work out if you think it's a whinge, or simply a request for support:

"Ladies and gentlemen, this is (insert rank and name), together with (all participating crew) may I briefly have your attention.

On behalf of all Qantas pilots we would like to thank you for choosing to fly with Qantas.

We are proud of our profession and our airline and trust you will support us in keeping Qantas pilots in Qantas aircraft and ensuring our great iconic airline remains uniquely Australian.

For more information and to register your support, please make your next destination

Thank you."
patrick legein 0
john karas, this isn't an Airbus this is a 747 they're talking about!
iflypvt 0
Well stated "Fleagle" senior PIC/EAL66508/What "a woman pilot in '79" w/a degree in Flying Safe/Wx arr with souls, even our own!I also applaude the PIC's here who likewise as a grasp of "the tension" that comes frm squeezing fuel, Jetstream Aware, Wx aware...for the rest, GO LOG SOME TIME!
f4phlyer 0
While I haven't read all this dribble I haven't seen any discussion of departure OAT. I'm betting that with temps pushing 100+ in the DFW area they are right up against max 2nd segment climb limits. The A380 would probably be stretched as well. It all becomes a fine line trade off between payload and fuel. You depart with absolute min fuel requirements, refiles, etc. and all it takes is a headwind 10knots above forecast for an hour or so and the plan goes to pot as your reserves go out the tail pipe.

A380, I don't think it's max weight it's a matter of taxi turn radius. Without rotatable main gear the beast needs filets on all the turns to stay out of the mud.
iflyfsx 0
Looks like Quantas should have thought twice before cancelling the YSSY-KSFO route.
iflyfsx 0
Qantas. Sorry.
davemc380 0
@f4phlyer - in nil wind 100deg, the A380 would be limited to on MTOW by about 15T out of DFW - as you say, this *could* be the difference in also not being able to make it, but it's very close. Don't know the traffic loads, etc. but assuming a fuel load of ~220T, then useful load is around 30-35T, or enough for 300+ pax.

And regarding turn radius - the A380 has no problems with that. Can take a 90 deg turn on a 22m wide taxiway. FYI the rear bogies on the wing gear DO pivot - not in the same way as the B747, but it is there to assist with turns. You can actually do a u-turn on a 60m wide runway in an A380 without touching the sides.

The limit in DFW is pavement strength. The B747 is also over the limit by about 15%, but is operating on a *permanent* dispensation there. The A380 would be over the limit by more than 30%, and continued operation would damage the pavement, so no dispensation would be sought or granted.

@iflysx - Sadly, I think they did think twice about cancelling the SFO route.. unfortunately it looks like they decided to hand yet another Qantas route to Jetstar as part of what seems to be a progressive stripping of Qantas routes whilst building up the Jetstar ones.
f4phlyer 0
davemc380 - great info - I always broke the flight down into smaller parts, evaluating each one as they came up. The first thing is the planning. Mostly an exercise in legal compliance. Then in flight you treat each leg between refile points as a separate leg. Everything's fine til you encounter adverse conditions, more headwind/less tailwind, unable to be cleared to optimum alt., change in route, etc.. Now the reserves start going out the tailpipe and you can't meet the legal requirements for the refile and then you're on your way to your alternate.

My comment on the turn issue was the pictures that came out during certification about tire scrub in turns while taxiing. Very dramatic shots almost pulling the tire off the wheel. I do find your stress comment interesting as I seem to recall that one of the selling points in the beginning was that the beast would have equal or less tire loading than a 747.


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