By comparing the duration of the non-stop Perth–Johannesburg flight route with the same route with a stop, we can conclude the route is only possible if Earth is a sphere.
There are other Perth–Johannesburg flights but with a stop, like in Dubai. Flat-Earthers use it to “prove” a flat Earth. In reality, it does not mean the non-stop route does not exist. And it is easy to verify the existence of the non-stop route. These are consistent only with a spherical Earth and can never be explained if the Earth is flat.
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ETOPS is a safety regulation that prohibits airliners from flying too far from the nearest diversion airport. A higher ETOPS rating allows the flight to fly farther from the closest airport but has more stringent requirements, demanding higher operational costs.
As of 2021, there is no flight route over Antarctica, and flat-Earthers use it to “prove” a flat Earth. In reality, a reason for that is the lack of diversion airports in Antarctica, requiring aircraft with a higher ETOPS rating. Due to costs & the lack of market, no airliner considers it commercially viable yet.
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If we look toward the south at night in any location in the southern hemisphere, we will see the same set of stars. We will see the stars rotating around the south celestial pole, in the Octans constellation, near the star Sigma Octantis.
The flat-Earth model cannot explain the phenomenon. Looking at the so-called ‘flat-Earth map,’ we should see another set of stars on a different location in the southern hemisphere. The reason is that the flat-Earth model is a false representation of the Earth.
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The existence of the non-stop Sydney-Johannesburg flight route is only possible if Earth is a sphere. We can find that out by comparing its duration to the same route but with a stop.
There are other Sydney-Johannesburg flight routes, but with a stop, like in Dubai. Flat-Earthers use the existence of these routes to “prove” a flat Earth. In reality, it does not mean the non-stop route does not exist & it is not difficult to verify that the non-stop route exists.
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During the COVID-19 pandemic, many flight routes are being canceled, suspended, or cut down due to lockdowns, travel warnings, travel bans, or insufficient demand. These include flight routes that are impossible if Earth were flat.
Flat-Earthers looked for these routes, and when they could not find them, they use the lack of these routes to “prove” Earth is flat. In reality, they made these lookups during the COVID-19 pandemic, when most of these routes are not available or severely cut down.