On Monday, an Azul Brazilian Airlines ATR 72 turboprop plane took off a few minutes past noon, just west of São Paulo. When it landed two and a half hours later, it had drawn the logo of Azul, a stylized outline of Brazil, on the radar. However, the purpose of the flight remains a mystery – for now.
In the latest addition to the world of flight path art, Azul Brazilian Airlines has drawn its logo in the skies just West of São Paulo in Southeast Brazil. Operated by a turboprop ATR 72, the flight, outlining a stylized version of the map of Brazil, lasted for two hours and 27 minutes.
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The honor of representing its carrier on the publicity mission was given to an ATR 72-600 registered as PR-AQH. The aircraft joined Azul’s fleet of 33 ATR 72s in April 2013 upon completion at the manufacturer’s final assembly line in Toulouse. It goes by the name Inifinto Azul.
It took off on its meticulously planned quest from Viracopos – Campinas International Airport (VCP) at 12:15 local time. After a sharp left turn, it continued South while climbing to 11,000 feet. Then it turned inland again, proceeded to 11,500 feet, and commenced the drawing of the logo 25 minutes after take-off. It landed back at VCP two hours and two minutes later.
Simple Flying reached out to Azul for a comment and received the somewhat cryptic message that the flight was operated as a teaser for an announcement the carrier would be making tomorrow, Tuesday. Well, it most certainly has our attention.
Flight planners’ creative club
There has been a lot of artistic activity in the skies of late. Just last week, we watched as Qantas bid farewell to its Boeing 747 in true Aussie-style, drawing a kangaroo in the air off Australia’s West Coast.
However, the jumbo did not land back in Syndey, but rather it continued to California and the Mojave desert’s long-term storage. Meanwhile, it could potentially not remain there for too long, as there are rumors it, along with Qantas’ four other jumbos, has been purchased by General Electric for engine testing.
This was not the first 747 bowing out in style. On Israeli carrier El Al’s final jumbojet flight from Rome’s Fiumicino to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion, the pilots added an extra two hours of flight time, passengers informed, to draw an intricate self-portrait of the iconic quad-jet.
Furthermore, on April 23rd this year, Turkish Airlines made history when one of its Boeing 777s drew the Turkish flag in the sky to commemorate the National Sovereignty and Children’s Day and the foundation of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. The flight drew four million flight trackers, beating the previous record-holder, one of Qantas’ Project Sunrise flights, with over 400%.
What is your favorite piece of flight path art? Which one do you think was the trickier, and why? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.