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40 years since Concorde's first New York flight

Air France Concorde flew from Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle to JFK International this week in 1977

The first Air France Concorde flight from Paris to New York took off airport 40 years ago this week.

Just three-and-a-half hours after take-off, the supersonic plane that left from Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle landed at JFK International.

It was not the first commercial Concorde flight to cross the Atlantic - that took place nearly two years earlier, on January 21, 1976, when an Air France Concorde flew from Paris to Rio de Janiero - but US authorities had initially refused to allow the plane to land in America, citing environmental and noise concerns.
The US Secretary of Transport lifted the ban on landing in New York and Washington in February 1976, but flights to New York could only begin in November 1977 following a long stand-off between the US Supreme Court and New York Port Authorities.

That flight was the culmination of 15 years' collaboration between French and British aeroplane manufacturers Aérospatiale and British Aircraft Corporation under an Anglo-French cooperation treaty. It's first supersonic test flight took place

That first supersonic flight to New York took place 31 years after an Air France plane first landed in New York. That DC4 plane from Orly took 23 hours and 45 minutes to cross the Atlantic, taking in two stops - in Ireland and Newfoundland - on July 1, 1946.

Sadly, in July 2000, an Air France Concorde between Paris and New York crashed shortly after take-off, killing 113 people. All commercial flights ended three years later.

Current flights between Paris and New York take about eight hours - though a number of aeronautical agencies are reportedly developing supersonic aeroplanes.

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