Northwest invokes Lindbergh's spirit in launching Paris serviceby Martin Moylan, Minnesota Public Radio
Northwest Airlines launched nonstop service between the Twin Cities and Paris Tuesday afternoon.
Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport — Among the passengers is Lars Lindbergh, grandson of Charles Lindbergh, who made the first solo, nonstop transatlantic flight in history. Lindbergh flew from New York to Paris in 1927.
Northwest pilot Gary Peterson is part of the crew on the inaugural Northwest flight. Peterson said he appreciates how far aviation has come since Lindbergh's history-making journey.
"His aircraft took 33 hours and 30 minutes to get over to Paris. And today, we're going to do it in about seven hours and 50 minutes. His aircraft weighed 5,130 pounds. And coincidentally the A330 is 513,000 pounds. So, it's exactly 100 times heavier than the Spirit of St. Louis. And he had one passenger. And we will have, including crew, 313 passengers," he said.
Peterson will also have a much more comfortable plane. The Airbus A330 aircraft assigned to the route features some lie-flat seats and entertainment systems that offer 40 movies on-demand.