mel
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Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Sun Oct 28, 2007 9:39 pm

Just looked at flightaware, and noticed Korean Air 38 Chicago-Seoul flying over Winnipeg at FL430! Boeing 777-200. Flytecomm confirms the same altitude. Very unusual for a 12 hour flight to be up so high only 2 hours into its flight. Has anyone seen any other revenue flights cruising higher than FL410?
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boeing767mech
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 12:19 am

Our 737-823's cruise at FL410 on Transcon flights(or did when we flew them BOS-LAX)

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Super80DFW
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 12:24 am

I was on WN flight from DEN to MCi in August and we cruised at FL410. Seemed as if we were at anything FL30+.
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timz
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 1:15 am

Quoting MEL (Thread starter):
Very unusual for a 12 hour flight to be up so high only 2 hours into its flight.

Somebody ought to be able make a fair guess at their minimum weight-- if they do, I'll bet FL430 turns out to be impossible.
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 2:59 am

Quoting MEL (Thread starter):
Just looked at flightaware, and noticed Korean Air 38 Chicago-Seoul flying over Winnipeg at FL430! Boeing 777-200. Flytecomm confirms the same altitude. Very unusual for a 12 hour flight to be up so high only 2 hours into its flight. Has anyone seen any other revenue flights cruising higher than FL410

The first time a PW powered 744 could make 410 was at 240 T. Going from ORD-ICN, there is no real way he could make that altitude. Assuming a ZFW of 180T and 100 T of fuel remaining (low side overhead CYEG, with no payload you still couldn't make it up to 430.... I'd guess Flightaware is wrong!
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AAR90
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 6:15 am

Quoting MEL (Thread starter):
Has anyone seen any other revenue flights cruising higher than FL410?

I've flown AA 757s to their ceiling of FL425 before AA changed the ceiling to FL420. And AA762s & 763s to their ceiling of FL431 (the last one hundred... not very often).
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PhilSquares
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:16 am

Quoting AAR90 (Reply 5):
I've flown AA 757s to their ceiling of FL425 before AA changed the ceiling to FL420.

IIRC the 757 was 45,100.
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AAR90
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:29 am

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 6):
IIRC the 757 was 45,100.

I've never seen that (42.5 was highest I ever saw). From the current AA 757/767 OpMan:
Takeoff, Landing, and Enroute Operational Limits
757
Maximum Operating Altitude............................ 42,000 feet pressure altitude
Maximum Takeoff and Landing Altitude........... 14,500 feet pressure altitude
=TWA=>Maximum Takeoff and Landing Altitude... 8400 feet pressure altitude
767
Maximum Operating Altitude............................ 43,100 feet pressure altitude
Maximum Takeoff and Landing Altitude.............. 8400 feet pressure altitude
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PhilSquares
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 9:02 am

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 6):
IIRC the 757 was 45,100.

Last 757 flight was 12 years ago. I stand corrected.
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411A
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 11:36 am

I've personally flown the L1011-500 at FL430, however at very light weights only.
For the start of a long intercontinental flight, this would not be possible, even if the airplane was devoid of passengers and freight.

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747fan
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 1:53 pm

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 4):
The first time a PW powered 744 could make 410 was at 240 T. Going from ORD-ICN, there is no real way he could make that altitude. Assuming a ZFW of 180T and 100 T of fuel remaining (low side overhead CYEG, with no payload you still couldn't make it up to 430.... I'd guess Flightaware is wrong!

You're most definitely right, flightaware is regularly wrong about the altitude of certain flights; all you have to do to prove that is click on "track log" for some flights and you'll see sometimes that during one minute, the aircraft is climbing through FL310 and during the next minute, suddenly FL360.
I have seen on flightaware some short 744 flights that have reached FL410 or even 430, such as SFO-DEN and LAX-PDX. Of course, I don't know what the payload was, so I wonder if FL430 would be possible even with a high payload since there wouldn't be much fuel onboard for an LAX-PDX or SFO-DEN. IIRC, isn't the 744 theoretically capable of 45,100 ft.? And I think I read somewhere that the 747SP was capable of FL470. PhilSquares, I know you're a 744 captain, so correct me if I'm wrong.
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 2:42 pm

Quoting 747fan (Reply 10):
Of course, I don't know what the payload was, so I wonder if FL430 would be possible even with a high payload since there wouldn't be much fuel onboard for an LAX-PDX or SFO-DEN. IIRC, isn't the 744 theoretically capable of 45,100 ft.? And I think I read somewhere that the 747SP was capable of FL470. PhilSquares, I know you're a 744 captain, so correct me if I'm wrong.

For a short flight such as SFO-DEN the 400 would have no problems getting up to 430-450. However, that always doesn't mean that's the optimum FL for that flight. It might be more fuel efficient to cruise at a lower altitude due to winds and other factors. But the 400 would have no problem getting up to those FLs on a short flight.
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KELPkid
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Mon Oct 29, 2007 3:28 pm

Wasn't the 747SP a pretty high flyer? I seem to recall that Pan Am routinely flew them around at FL450 back in the day...

Also, don't forget Concorde: FL600 at the end of her flight (and the reason that, in the USA, Class A airspace ends at 60,000 feet  Smile ).
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747fan
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:24 am

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 12):
Wasn't the 747SP a pretty high flyer? I seem to recall that Pan Am routinely flew them around at FL450 back in the day...

Yes, I believe it had a certified altitude of FL470, 2K ft. higher than any other 747. All 747's excluding the SP, including the -400, are certified for FL450. But its very rare for the 747 to go any higher than FL430 as the Queen (it will always be the Queen, despite the A380) is not efficient up there (FL450). IIRC, the 747 has a pretty low margin of error up there; for example, the speed range for the plane up there is very narrow. I'm guessing the 747SP didn't have this problem up at FL450 as I do believe that it was routinely flown at that height, correct me if I'm wrong.
 
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Zkpilot
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Tue Oct 30, 2007 4:31 am

Quoting 747fan (Reply 13):
I'm guessing the 747SP didn't have this problem up at FL450 as I do believe that it was routinely flown at that height, correct me if I'm wrong.

Well the SP did have a bigger tail and with it having a smaller body but same wings etc it should have effectively had more % control surface area than other 747s
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PhilSquares
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Tue Oct 30, 2007 4:55 am

Quoting 747fan (Reply 13):
Yes, I believe it had a certified altitude of FL470, 2K ft. higher than any other 747. All 747's excluding the SP, including the -400, are certified for FL450. But its very rare for the 747 to go any higher than FL430 as the Queen (it will always be the Queen, despite the A380) is not efficient up there (FL450). IIRC, the 747 has a pretty low margin of error up there; for example, the speed range for the plane up there is very narrow. I'm guessing the 747SP didn't have this problem up at FL450 as I do believe that it was routinely flown at that height, correct me if I'm wrong.

The SP was certified just like every other 747, that's up to 45100. Generally speaking the SP could make 390 right after a max weight takeoff while the 100/200 would be hard pressed to get up to 310.

The "margin of error" isn't that big of a problem. Mainly because at the gross weights you are at you have plenty of margin at high cruise altitudes.

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 14):
Well the SP did have a bigger tail and with it having a smaller body but same wings etc it should have effectively had more % control surface area than other 747s

The larger tail was to compensate for the shorter fuselage during engine out situations.
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andz
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:36 am

Quoting MEL (Thread starter):
Very unusual for a 12 hour flight to be up so high only 2 hours into its flight.



Quoting KELPkid (Reply 12):
Wasn't the 747SP a pretty high flyer?

I flew jumpseat on a SAA 747SP JNB-DUR once and we went to FL410, the flight duration was about 50 minutes.
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Pagophilus
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:08 am

I've been in an Ansett Australia 747-300 back in 1998 from SYD-KIX that reported on Airshow to be at 42500ft. I assume it was actually at 43000.
 
MadameConcorde
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RE: Revenue Flights - Highest Cruising Altitude

Fri Nov 09, 2007 5:41 pm

Unless I am proved wrong the revenue flights highest cruising altitude was Concorde at more or less 60,000.  Smile
There was a better way to fly it was called Concorde

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