Boeing 787 Dreamliner draws its own outline with flight path on 17-hour test flight

A Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner plane has created an outline of itself in the sky above America using GPS tracking. 

The plane was given clearance to take the journey, starting at Boeing's headquarters in Seattle, Washington on Wednesday night (local time). 

The Dreamliner stayed entirely within the US border, but travelled further than any other commercial route in operation.  

It flew from Washington State, on the western sea border, across to Lake Superior before crossing above at least 17 states to create the outline.

The nose was directed towards the home of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, the Puget Sound region.

By the time it landed back in Seattle the plane had travelled 15,699 kilometres. Auckland to Doha, the current longest commercial flight route in the world, clocks in at 14,517 kilometres.

The test flight took 18 hours and 10 minutes compared to the 17-hour long haul between New Zealand and Qatar.

Keen aviation fans were able to track the Dreamliner on flightrader24.


The flight was part of a PR stunt, and it's not the first time such a stunt has been pulled off by the company.

In February 2012, a Boeing 787-8 took an 18-hour flight travelling more than 16,093 kilometres from Washington State to Iowa as it traced out 787 and the Boeing logo in the skies above the US. 

Qantas will pick up its first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner in October this year and will use it on another ultra-long-haul route: from Perth to London, non-stop. That flight is expected to take around 17 hours and will fly 14,498km. 

See: Qantas' non-stop Perth to London flights go on sale


See also: Airbus A350 vs Boeing Dreamliner - which plane is best on a long haul?

See also: How to survive the world's longest flight route

Traveller's 10th anniversary reader survey

Vote for your Destination of the Decade and Airline of the Decade in our reader poll to mark 10 years of Traveller