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The Qantas team at Sydney Airport after it flew nonstop from New York City. Photo: James D. Morgan/Getty Images for Qantas

Qantas confirmed in a statement that it's completed a test for the world's longest flight, with its plane landing at Sydney Airport after flying for 19 hours 16 minutes from New York City's JFK Airport.

Why it matters: Qantas CEO Alan Joyce, who was aboard the Boeing 787-9, hailed the achievement as a "significant first for aviation" that he hopes will become a regular, time-saving service for passengers. Researchers monitored pilots' brain waves, melatonin levels and alertness during the flight.

What's next: The Australian firm plans two more research flights — one from London to Sydney in November and another New York to Sydney in December, Qantas said.

Go deeper

13 mins ago - World

Belgium imposes lockdown, citing "health emergency" due to influx of COVID-19 cases

Belgium Prime Minister Alexander De Croo. Photo: THIERRY ROGE/BELGA MAG/AFP via Getty Images

Belgium is enforcing a strict lockdown starting Sunday amid rising coronavirus infections, hospital admissions and a surge of deaths, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced on Friday.

Why it matters: De Croo said the government saw no choice but to lock down "to ensure that our health care system does not collapse." Scientists and health officials said deaths have doubled every six days, per the Guardian.

34 mins ago - Politics & Policy

First look: Reid Hoffman launches $1M ad urging election patience

Screengrab of ad

Billionaire and LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, one of Democrats' biggest donors, tells Axios he's launching a $1 million digital ad campaign in battleground states urging voters to be patient with election results and prepare for no winner to be known on Nov. 3, no matter what "some people" may prematurely declare via Twitter.

Driving the news: The three-minute ad, titled "We Count! A Patriotic Musical Extravaganza," features the voice of "The Big Bang Theory's" Jim Parsons and Broadway star Barrett Doss. The spot will appear on Facebook targeting voters in the swing states of Arizona, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.