Captain Carlos Mirpuri and his crew flew the widebody aircraft, from Cape Town to the White Continent and back; the journey is 2,500 nautical miles, flying for just over five hours each way. Never before has an A340 landed on an Antarctic blue glacial ice runway. The aircraft will be used this season to fly a small number of tourists, alongside scientists and essential cargo to the White Continent.
Hi Fly 9H-SOL is an A340-313HGW (High Gross Weight) with a maximum take-off weight of 275 tons. It is an aircraft that delivers, every time. Highly reliable, comfortable, with an excellent safety record, the aircraft was carefully chosen to perform well in this extreme environment. Its exceptional range and 4 engine redundancy also makes it ideal for this type of remote operation.
The turnaround in Antarctica took less time than the initially planned three hours, with flight operations, ground operations and maintenance doing an impeccable job.