Soldiers serving with 16 Air Assault Brigade are seated on a Royal Air Force C17 for the final leg of their journey to Afghanistan, in this picture entitled "Prepare for Landing".
But what’s even more remarkable than the milestone or the view is the plane itself, and the maneuvers the pilots have to make in preparation for landing. The A318 is a small jet designed for short and medium-haul flights, but British Airways is the only carrier to fly it on a transatlantic route (with a stop in Ireland when heading to New York) due to LCY’s short runway and steep approach (the A318 is the only plane certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency for steep approaches). According to British Airways, the A318 is modified specifically for that landing, with spoilers on the wings that help the pilot maintain the proper speed. Despite the shorter runway, the plane uses only about half of it, thanks to a good set of brakes and reverse thrusters.