London to Sydney in just two hours within 10 years – if they go via space

London to Sydney in just two hours within 10 years – if they go via space | Secret Flying

Two-hour flights from London to Sydney via space soon to be a reality.


Travellers will be able to fly from London to Sydney, Australia, in less than two hours within the next decade – if they go through space, research from the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) suggests.


The CAA is funding medical studies into the effects of suborbital space flights, in which travellers could be thrown into space for a short time period before descending to their destination much quicker than via airplane.


The study, conducted with King’s College London and facilitated by the RAF, found that the majority of people handled the G-forces of suborbital space flights well.


Dr Ryan Anderton, the CAA’s medical lead for flight, said that “physiological responses are likely to be benign for most passengers” but older people usually have slightly “stiffer arteries” which could lessen the pooling of blood away from the brain.


One study placed 24 healthy people aged from 32 to 80 in an RAF centrifuge at Cranwell to recreate the G-forces felt during the launch and descent of suborbital rocket and spaceplane flights.


It found that G-forces could reach four times the usual force of the Earth’s gravity for 20 to 30 seconds during ascent and peak at six times, or 6G, during descent for 10 to 15 seconds, creating a heavy sensation on the chest, making it more difficult to breathe. This can reduce the intake of oxygen, affect the rhythm of the heart and lead blood to pool away from the brain.


The study also noted a rise in heart rate and blood pressure, a dip in blood oxygen and some “greying out” of peripheral vision during periods of high G-force, but found these quickly return to normal. One participant briefly lost consciousness, but with no lasting ill effects. The effects were reduced when the chair was tilted back slightly.


Suborbital flights, such as those offered by Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic and Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin companies, cost more than £350,000 per seat at present.


But regulators have predicted they will soon be less expensive, eventually becoming intercontinental travel option “accessible to anybody”.


Currently, the flight time between the UK capital and Sydney is usually around 22 hours. Earlier this year, Qantas announced plans to reduce this with new direct flights between the two cities from 2025, although they will still see travellers on board for 19 hours.