Yup this is indeed possible , United was to start non stops from US to DEL and BOM but this was pre 9/11 , all plans got shelved later on for obvious reasons. Sean would be the best person to answer this . but one of the reasons for the AI
interest was non stops between India and the US.
As of now load restricted 343's , 744's ,772 LR
, 773 . 345,346's all are capable of doing these routes. No doubt there is an amazing demand but there are other things which come into play. Since all these routes will fly directly over the North Pole, using the great circle mapper , I would presume HF
links would be required on all these aircrafts (United , when it was planning these routes, was talking to Iridium for coverage beyond 82 deg N) The other thing is alternate landing spots on the routes in the event of emergencies. The last thing required would be overflying rights for the airlines.
I travel pretty frequently between DEL and SFO
, and believe me I for one would love a non stop between these 2 places.
Anyway , my 2 cents.