City in the Sky


Series 1 - Episode 1 Departure



You wouldn’t think it would be possible to make a fresh, fascinating TV sequence about a passenger jet taking off, but this programme manages it. The scene at the end where presenter Dallas Campbell sits in the cockpit as a huge Lufthansa Airbus barrels down the runway at Frankfurt Airport explains the science stuff well, but also makes you grasp what a bizarre feat the whole thing is.

Before then, there’s much explanation of how planes and airports work, with the excellent Dr Hannah Fry visiting Yakutsk Airport in Siberia, where at minus 47 degrees the ground crew struggles to stop a plane’s engine oil from becoming “like marmalade”.


Dallas Campbell and Dr Hannah Fry present a documentary exploring aviation, beginning with a look at the challenges of getting aircraft into the air. The programme features a visit to the world's busiest airport to discover the work that goes into getting its millions of visitors off the ground. Plus, the construction of the world's largest passenger plane and the dangers of taking off from the coldest city on Earth.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Dallas Campbell
Presenter Dr Hannah Fry
Director Russell Leven
Director Matt Barrett
Producer Russell Leven
Producer Matt Barrett
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