Working with FAA and Airservices Australia Air New Zealand today is scheduled to fly a Boeing 777 test flight using methods to reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions.
Officially dubbed Aspire I, the flight from Auckland to San Francisco should save 4,400 litres of fuel and emit 11 tonnes less carbon dioxide than during a regular flight.
"By operating under these optimum planning conditions we will be able to demonstrate how many millions of tonnes of fuel and carbon emissions can be saved by airlines globally if they are permitted to utilise concepts and technologies in flight efficiency in all phases of commercial flight," says Air New Zealand's General Manager Airline Operations, Captain David Morgan.
The aircraft is operating with an optimised flight plan effectively being unconstrained from pushback to arrival in San Francisco.
Air New Zealand already has a tailored arrivals programme into San Francisco after being the first carrier invited to join by organisers FAA, NASA and Boeing. The carrier joined the programme that allows its Boeing 777-200ERs to fully utilise on-board and ground technology to carry out descents with minimal air traffic control intervention.