ATLANTA, March 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL - news) today announced it conducted a demonstration flight on a polar routing from New York (JFK) to Beijing, China, March 3-4, 2001, using a Boeing 777 aircraft, featuring its award-winning BusinessElite service. The Boeing aircraft returned from Beijing to Atlanta on March 6, 2001.
Mac Armstong, Delta's executive vice president -- Operations, said, ``Delta conducted this flight to validate training and technical objectives for future polar operations; and to demonstrate Delta's ability to explore new route opportunities as we pursue our goal to become the number one airline in the eyes of our customers, flying passengers and cargo from anywhere to everywhere.''
The 6,559- nautical- mile route from New York to Beijing, which took 14-and- one-half hours to complete, flew over the North Pole and the Siberia region of Russia on a routing referred to as Polar Route 3. The flight provided Delta with the opportunity to fly the polar route, which is less congested and can improve travel times between New York and Beijing by about an hour.
The Delta demonstration flight took place following the Russian government's recent approval of certain polar routes for operations between the United States and Asia. Representatives from the Chinese and U.S. transportation departments, Boeing Company, Rolls-Royce and Honeywell were aboard the demonstration flight to test various equipment.
``This was the first polar route demonstration flight for Delta and the first to operate between New York and Beijing,'' Armstrong said.
A portion of the Delta demonstration flight focused on two different methods to measure the temperature of jet fuel.
A part of the Delta demonstration flight was used test Honeywell's new WINN weather system, which provides color images of weather patterns to help pilots determine which route is best for the passengers, the crew and the carrier. Pilots will be able to access their own ``weather channel in the sky'' to help them evaluate and choose the best routes when approaching adverse weather.
The Delta flight utilized ship #7004 flown by captains John L. Sciera and William M. Guy, with back-up captains David C. Haines and Chip Sassone. Flight attendants on the flight were: Wendy Brigham, Lesya Horen, Diane Jones, Diane Martih, Dudley Ogata, Billy Pao, Shelia Perkins, Fong Rittmann, Steven Stanley and Sandra Welsh.
Delta's goal is to become the #1 airline in the eyes of its customers, flying passengers and cargo from anywhere to everywhere. Passengers already choose to fly Delta more often than any other airline in the world on 5,140 flights each day to 349 cities in 59 countries on Delta, Delta Express, Delta Shuttle, the Delta Connection carriers, and Delta's Worldwide Partners. Delta is a founding member of SkyTeam, a global airline alliance which provides customers with extensive worldwide destinations, flights and services. For more information, visit Delta at delta.com .
SOURCE: Delta Air Lines, Inc.