Flight Distance (Non Commercial Aircraft)
The record holder is the GlobalFlyer flown by Steve Fossett on February 12, 2006. The distance was 42,469.46 km. In second place is the Rutan Voyager piloted by Richard Glenn Rutan and Jeana Yeager on December 23, 1986. The distance covered was 40,212.14 km.
At third place is the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress. On January 10 – 11, 1962 it flew a distance of 20,177 km. Lockheed P2V-1 Neptune flew 18,083.6 km from September 29 – October 2, 1946, good for fourth place in the longest flight distance record for non commercial aircraft. It was piloted by Tom Davies and Eugene Rankin.
At fifth place is the Boeing B-29 Superfortress. On November 20, 1945, it traveled 12,739.6 km.
At number six is the Vickers Wellesley. From November 5-7, 1938 the plane flew 11,520.4 km. At seventh place is the Koken-ki piloted by Yuzoh Fujita. The plane traveled a distance of 11,651.011 km from May 13-15, 1937.
At number eight is the Tupolev ANT-25. Piloted by Mikhail Gromov, the craft covered a distance of 10,148.5 km from July 12 – 14, 1937.
At ninth place is the Blériot 110 F-ALCC. The aircraft was piloted by J.M. Rossi and P. Codos on August 7, 1933. The plane traveled 9,104.7 km. At tenth place for the longest flight distance record is the Fairey Long-range Monoplane K1991. The craft was piloted by O.R. Gayford and G.E. Nicholetts. It raveled 8,544 km on February 8, 1933.
Flight Distance (Commercial Aircraft)
The number one is the Boeing 777-200LR piloted by Suzanna Darcy-Henneman. On November 9, 2005 the plane flew 21,602.22 km from Hong Kong International Airport to Heathrow Airport in London.
At second place is the A340-500. On June 28, 2004 it flew 16,600 km from Singapore to New York. The flight took 18 hours and 18 minutes. At third place is the A340-500. It traveled 14,093 km on February 3, 2004, from Singapore to Los Angeles. The journey took 14 hours and 42 minutes.
Longest Flight Distance Records (Other Aircraft)
The Schempp-Hirth Nimbus-4 flew 3,008.8 km on January 21, 2003. It was piloted by Klaus Ohlmann and Gerhard Marzinzik. It was a gliding flight with four legs. The flight took place along the Andes. The total flight time was about 15 hours. The average speed was 200 km/h.
Another one worth noting is the flight of Breitling Orbiter, a balloon. It was flown by Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones and traversed 40,814 km. The date was March 21, 1999.
The earliest flights were done on December 17, 1903 by Wilbur Wright on the Wright Flyer. It traveled 279 m for 59 seconds. His brother Orville flew the Wright Flyer on the same day for 12 seconds. It traveled 39 m.
The quest for the longest flight distance records isn’t just borne out of the need to travel. Just like climbing a mountain, people do it because it presents a challenge.