|City of Canberra|
|The City of Canberra lands for the last time at Illawarra Regional Airport, 8 March 2015|
|Construction number||24354 (Line Number 731)|
|Registration||N6046P (Boeing Test)|
|First flight||3 July 1989|
|Owners and operators||Qantas|
|Last flight||8 March 2015|
|Status||Preserved by Historical Aircraft Restoration Society|
|Preserved at||Illawarra Regional Airport|
The City of Canberra is a Boeing 747-438 delivered to Qantas in 1989. During its delivery from the Boeing Everett Factory in the United States, it made a non-stop flight from London Heathrow to Sydney. As of February 2015[update], this remains the longest non-stop un-refuelled delivery flight by an airliner.
The City of Canberra, registered VH-OJA, named after Australia's capital city, was the first Boeing 747-438 delivered to Qantas.[note 1]. It was not modified for the flight in any way – such as by the installation of extra fuel tanks – but some items of equipment were removed from the galleys and cargo compartments to save weight.
The 747-438 took 20 hours and 9 minutes to fly a distance of 9,720 nautical miles (18,001 km) from London Heathrow to Sydney. The elapsed time was six minutes longer than the quickest non-stop England to Australia flight, which was made by an Avro Vulcan of the Royal Air Force in 1961. The City of Canberra set a record for the longest un-refuelled flight by a commercial aircraft, as the Vulcan was a military aircraft and had to be refuelled in flight several times while flying from RAF Scampton to RAAF Base Richmond near Sydney.
City of Canberra remained in service with Qantas until January 2015, when it was retired as part of the draw-down of the airline's fleet of 747s. The last commercial flight was from Johannesburg to Sydney. It was subsequently donated to the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society at the Illawarra Regional Airport via a delivery flight on 8 March 2015, and was placed on public display after a short period of decommissioning.
The City of Canberra name has also been carried by other first deliveries for Qantas, including two other Boeing 747s. The first Boeing 707-138 delivered in July 1959, the first Boeing 747-238 delivered in August 1971 and the first Boeing 747-338 delivered in November 1984, all carried the name.
- The aircraft is a Boeing 747-400 model; Boeing assigns a unique code for each company that buys one of its aircraft, which is applied as an infix to the model number at the time the aircraft is built. Boeing's code for Qantas is 38, hence "747-438".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to VH-OJA (aircraft).|
- "Qantas flies London-Sydney non-stop". Flight International. Sutton, Surrey: Reed Business Publishing Ltd. 136 (4179): 8. 26 August 1989. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
- Freed, Jamie (29 January 2015). "World's longest flight record-holder, Qantas 'City of Canberra' 747-400, retires". The Canberra Times. Canberra, ACT. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
- Jacobs (2011), p.96
- O'Sullivan, Mark (19 January 2015). "Wollongong final resting place for Queen of the Skies". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 17 August 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2015.
- Qanras Inaugural Australia-USA Boeing 707 Service - 1959 Civil Aviation Historical Society & Airways Museum
- First 747 Canberra Times 16 August 1971 page 3
- New Boring for Qantas rolls off assembly line Canberra Times 26 September 1984 page 13