Roo Tales - engineering

Your behind the scenes access to Qantas, the airline and its people.

That time we towed a plane with a Tesla

Never has a passenger airliner been hitched to an electric passenger vehicle for towing. Well at least until today.
On a remote taxiway at Melbourne Airport, a Tesla Model X P100D with the greatest pulling power of any electric passenger vehicle came face to face against the newest star of the Qantas fleet, a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.

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From the smallest nut to an extra nose cone, we’ve got plenty of spares

Everyone knows an airline has lots of moving parts. But behind the scenes of Qantas’ flying operations is a mammoth engineering service with 250,000 spare pieces of kit ready to be despatched for routine aircraft maintenance and repairs. That’s a lot of parts to manage, but we want to make sure we have whatever it […]

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Some (wing) tips on how our planes beat drag

Snapped a photo from the plane window and noticed a small or even large tip at the end of the wing? These angled tips are ‘winglets’; and for such a small part of an aircraft they pack a big punch. They help us fly more efficiently and smoother. They do all this by reducing something […]

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Fixing planes and wearing flares, how to be an engineer in the 70s

The year was 1976. The population of the world was 4.1 billion, the Apple Computer Company had just been formed, Jimmy Carter was challenging Gerald Ford to become U.S. President, Holden released the HJ and Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ was dominating the charts. Here at Qantas, we had taken delivery of eight B747s, the aircraft that […]

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What’s really at the pointy end…

When you think of the “pointy end” of an aircraft, you’re probably thinking of 1A, lie flat beds and champagne. But if we’re going to be really literal about it, the pointy end is actually the nose cone. And occasionally, it goes under the knife. And by knife, we mean screwdriver. So what’s under there? Underneath […]

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