First non-stop flight between United Kingdom and Australia lands at Heathrow

A Qantas A-380 plane flies past the Sydney Opera house in central Sydney

At flight's inaugural, he said the earliest Qantas flights between Australia and the United Kingdom - known as the "kangaroo route" - had taken four days and involved seven stops.

The airline is using the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, which is twice as fuel-efficient as the Boeing 747.

This will include direct flights from East Australia to Europe on a route called the Sunrise Project.

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce past year said such flights were "the last frontier of global aviation ... the antidote to the tyranny of distance and a revolution for air travel in Australia".

The firm hopes to routinely fly non-stop from Australia to London and NY by 2022, which would take 20 hours.

The historic Qantas flight QF9 is the first non-stop scheduled flight from Australia to Britain landed after 17 hours in London. The 14,484-km route is part of the airline's ambitious plans to connect Europe with airports on Australia's eastern seaboard as new, more efficient aircraft become available.

The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner had more than han 230 passengers and 16 crew on board.

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Some of the passengers have agreed to share data on their sleeping and activity patterns with researchers from the University of Sydney.

The Western Australia government is hoping the new route will open up more tourism to the west of the country.

Aviation consultant John Strickland said the launch of the flights is a significant moment for the airline industry.

Qantas Airways' inaugural service between the Australian city of Perth and Heathrow will touch down in London at 5.05am on Sunday before departing for the return trip at 1.15pm that afternoon.

In a Twitter post, Qantas said the flight was led by Captain Lisa Norman, Captain Jeff Foote, First Officer Dave Summergreene and Second Officer Troy Lane.

The plane was fitted with special features to minimise discomfort during the journey including measures which minimised noise. It starts its route in Melbourne before stopping in Perth to begin its long-haul journey.

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