book was published in 1979 on behalf of the Aviation Historical
Society of Australia.
It was the story of the Qantas Empire Airways secret wartime
flights from Perth to Ceylon and Karachi, conducted in radio
silence through Japanese controlled airspace. The service commenced
in 1943 using Consolidated Catalinas transferred from BOAC,
which took an average of 29 hours between Perth and Lake Koggala
in Ceylon, although one trip was airborne for 32 hours. The
few high priority passengers on each flight were awarded a certificate
The Secret Order of the Double Sunrise, which is reproduced
in colour in the book. Consolidated Liberators and Avro Lancastrians
were later introduced on the route.
This book was the result of a joint research between Geoff Goodall
and Barry Pattison, which proved to be an enjoyable and productive
project. A number of surviving Qantas pilots and engineers were
interviewed and their first-hand recollections and logbooks
were invaluable to document an authoritative history.
The book sold out within a few years.
I have commenced on a long-term project to publish a revised
edition, to incorporate the significant additional detailed
information collected over the intervening years.