Flight crew breaks record for circumnavigating globe via both poles
CNN - Thu 11 Jul 20:56 GMT

An international flight crew has broken the record for the fastest circumnavigation of the globe via the North and South Poles, with an impressive margin of almost six hours.

  An international flight crew has broken the record for the fastest circumnavigation of the globe via the North and South Poles, with an impressive margin of almost six hours.

  The previous record, set in 2008, took 52 hours, 31 minutes and four seconds, at an average speed of 822.8km/h (511.26 mph).

  The aircraft later refueled in Kazakhstan before flying to Mauritius to begin the South Pole leg of the trip.

  The first pole-to-pole circumnavigation flight took place in 1965 in a modified Flying Tiger Line Boeing 707-349C carrying 40 scientists, guests and crew.

  To make the trip possible, the plane -- nicknamed Pole Cat -- had to be modified with two additional fuel tanks installed in the main cabin.

  This plane didn't set a speed record, but by landing for fuel at Antarctica's McMurdo Station, it was the first aircraft to touch all seven continents.

  Pan Am Flight 50's speed record stood for 31 years until 2008, when a Bombardier Global Express business jet broke it, thanks to perfect planning and shorter fuel stops.