Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Malaysia Airline Flight 370 Mystery Day 51 ( April 29 , 2014 ) and Day 52 ( April 30 , 2014 ) ..... Status of sea and airborne surface search , as wind down of those efforts begins ( New Straits Times articles ) Guessing Games ??? A pilot from New York believes he has found the wreckage of the missing Malaysia Airline Flight 370 off the coast of Thailand after searching thousands of satellite images online , The recreational pilot from Tonawanda said he was shocked to discover that the aircraft, which vanished two months ago, appeared to be in one piece beneath the water off the northeast coast of Malaysia, just west of Songkhla in Thailand. The image was taken days after the crash ........ Meanwhile , A marine exploration company based in Australia claims it may have located the wreckage of Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 - 3,000 miles away from where authorities have been looking -- However, According to Australian news Channel 7 News, the Adelaide-based company GeoResonance says its own private research has identified elements on the ocean floor in the Bay of Bengal consistent with material from a plane. GeoResonance’s search covered 2million sq km of the possible crash zone, using images obtained from satellites and aircraft. Scientists focused their efforts north of MH370’s last known location, using more than 20 technologies to analyse the data including a nuclear reactor. According to company spokesperson David Pope, “The technology that we use was originally designed to find nuclear warheads, submarines. Our team in the Ukraine decided we should try and help.”

4 / 30 / 14.......

Malaysia Chronicle.....


Wednesday, 30 April 2014 17:40

PLOT TO KEEP MH370 HIDDEN FOREVER?: Wreckage in Bay of Bengal claims REJECTED without checks

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PLOT TO KEEP MH370 HIDDEN FOREVER?: Wreckage in Bay of Bengal claims REJECTED without checks
A private company said it had found what it believes is wreckage of a plane in the Bay of Bengal that should be investigated as potential debris from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, but the possibility was dismissed by search coordinators.
The Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) managing the multinational search for the missing plane said it continued to believe that the plane came down in the southern Indian Ocean off Australia.
The Bay of Bengal is located between India and Myanmar, thousands of miles from the current search area. The wreckage was reported by Australian geophysical survey company GeoResonance.
"The company is not declaring this is MH370, however it should be investigated," GeoResonance said in a statement.
The company said it had passed on the information to Malaysian Airlines and the Malaysian and Chinese embassies in Australia on March 31, and to the JACC on April 4.
"The company and its directors are surprised by the lack of response from the various authorities," GeoResonance said.
"This may be due to a lack of understanding of the company's technological capabilities, or the JACC is extremely busy, or the belief that the current search in the Southern Indian Ocean is the only plausible location of the wreckage."
GeoResonance says on its website that it offers a unique and proven method of geophysical survey that detects electromagnetic fields from various chemical elements. GeoResonance did not respond to requests for further comment.
Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, went missing in March en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
The Australian-led search team said it was relying on information from satellite and other data to determine the missing aircraft's location and the location in the GeoResonance report was not within that search arc.
"The joint international team is satisfied that the final resting place of the missing aircraft is in the southerly portion of the search arc," it said.
A massive search operation involving aircraft, ships and sophisticated underwater equipment capable of scouring the ocean floor has so far failed to turn up any trace of the plane.
Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott said on Monday the chance of finding floating debris was now remote, and a new phase of the search would focus on the seabed.
Malaysia's transport ministry said in a statement late on Tuesday that it was assessing the credibility of the latest report.
"In line with Malaysia's consistent stand of verifying and corroborating any new lead since Day 1 of the search operations, we are aware of a report citing the detection of potential aircraft wreckage in the Bay of Bengal," said Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.
"Malaysia is working with its international partners to assess the credibility of this information." - Reuters

New Straits Times.....



MH370 Tragedy: 10-hour day searches for plane among challenges - Pilot

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SUBANG: The daily, 10-hour duration set for the operation to locate the vanished Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370 aircraft was an arduous task for the crew of the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) C-130 Hercules aircraft.

However, the crew of the aircraft which departed for the Pearce Royal Australian Air Force Base (RAAF) on March 28, faced the long periods stoically.
A pilot of the aircraft, Major Azman Amat, 44, said the aircraft crew went through many experiences and challenges, among which were foul and uncertain weather in the waters of the Indian Ocean, which at times forced them to turn back.
"Our mission was quite challenging, followed by the lengthy period of at least 10 hours of search a day, going and coming back.    
"Definitely dangerous, but it was a task given to us. I also informed my wife regarding whatever condition I faced, whether the weather was good or bad," he told reporters upon his arrival at the Subang Air Force Base with 53 other personnel and officers taking part in the mission since March 29.
He said the crew also hoped to find something positive in the search, but when informed the debris found in the operation turned up negative, they would feel disappointed and sad.
"I always strove hard in the searches in the hope of finding something. But, when I found something and was told it was not debris (from the aircraft), I feel sad because I fervently want to find something, even if only a small piece of debris," added Azman who is from Salak Tinggi, Sepang, Selangor.    
He said 'Ops Pyramid', in which he was involved to fly out Malaysian students, following the political turbulence in Egypt was different from the current mission, as it only entailed going there to fly out the students.
"This is more dangerous and challenging. It is the most challenging and most time-consuming in the 24 years I have been working with RMAF," he said.
Flight MH370, with 227 passengers and 12 crew departed from the KL International Airport at 12.41am on March 8 before disappearing from the radar, an hour later over the South China Sea.
On March 24 - 17 days after the Boeing 777-200ER went missing, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced that MH370 ended in the southern Indian Ocean.
Meanwhile, Azman's wife, Zamzurina Zakaria, 43, said her husband's absence due to his participation in the operation brought out numerous emotions within her.
"I felt choked, afraid and a myriad of things played out in my mind when my husband was assigned for the mission...but as the wife of a military personnel, I am forced to accept and be prepared mentally and physically.    
"Our three children and I always missed him but we could communicate with him daily, whether via telephone or short messaging service," said Zamzurina, who manages her own business.
She said among the most worrying was when her husband informed her that the aircraft he piloted flew low, and once, a storm forced them to stop the search for a while.
"Normally, my husband would tell me about such matters after the operation but they would still cause worry and fear. I prayed a lot so that everything went well and safely," she said.
For Siti Zanirah Ab Aziz, 34, pacifying the emotions of her children who were still small was her biggest challenge when her husband, Sergeant Mohd Nazri Mohamad, 34, was in Perth on the same mission.    
"Initially, my husband was expected to be there for only two weeks, so when he did not return at the end of the period, which was extended, my children started enquiring as to when he would return.    
"As a mother, I feel anguished when my son said if he was able to, he wanted to go to Australia to find his father," said Siti Zanirah, who is pregnant with their third child.
Two RMAF C-130 Hercules aircraft which took part in the search for the MH370 aircraft arrived safely home this morning after leaving the Pearce RAAF base late last night.
A total of 19 officers and 35 personnel arrived in the aircraft, following announcement on the suspension of the air search to give focus to the intensive search on the sea bed.
-- BERNAMA

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MH370 Tragedy: Australia dismiss claims by exploration firm

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SYDNEY: Australian authorities on Wednesday dismissed claims by a marine exploration company that material found in the Bay of Bengal could be from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

Adelaide-based GeoResonance was quoted in Malaysian media and by  Australia’s Channel Seven as saying it had detected possible debris from a  plane 5,000 kilometres (3,100 miles) from the current search location.
On Tuesday, Malaysia’s acting transport minister Hishammuddin Hussein said  he was verifying the information but Australia’s Joint Agency Coordination  Centre, which is fronting the search, downplayed any link.
“The location of MH370 suggested by the GeoResonance report (in the Bay of  Bengal) is not in the Australian search and rescue zone,” a spokesman for the  government agency told AFP.
“The Australian led search is relying on information from satellite and  other data to determine the missing aircraft’s location. The location specified  by the GeoResonance report is not within the search arc derived from this data.
“The joint international team is satisfied that the final resting place of  the missing aircraft is in the southerly portion of the search arc.”    
The Beijing-bound Malaysia Airlines flight with 239 people aboard  disappeared shortly after take-off from Kuala Lumpur on March 8.
Based on calculations involving the plane’s speed and fuel and satellite  data, investigators believe it veered off course and crashed into the southern  Indian Ocean off Australia, although a massive hunt for evidence has so far  yielded nothing on the surface or below.
The aerial hunt has been called off while the underwater search by an  unmanned mini-submarine and other technology is being expanded across a huge  swathe of seabed of about 56,000 square kilometres (21,600 square miles).
GeoResonance, which specialises in geophysical surveys to find oil and gas,  groundwater, and uranium, said its research using images from satellites and  aircraft had identified elements on the ocean floor consistent with material  from a plane.
The company said it surveyed over 2,000,000 square kilometres.
“We identified chemical elements and materials that make up a Boeing 777... these are aluminium, titanium, copper, steel alloys and other materials,”  company representative Pavel Kursa told Channel Seven.
   
Another company representative, David Pope, told the broadcaster: “We’re  not trying to say that it definitely is MH370, however it is a lead we feel  should be followed up.” AFP

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MH370 Tragedy: Preliminary report out tomorrow: Hishammuddin

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SEPANG: The preliminary report on the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 aircraft's disappearance will be released tomorrow, said Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein.

He said the report would be similar to the one forwarded to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) by the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA).
"I don't think there's going to be any problem to issue it. But we have decided it as a team, that it's going to be issued tomorrow. 
"The way forward and the consent that I requested in my negotiation with Australia and other stakeholders in the search, I tabled and reported it to the Cabinet this morning, and I got all the necessary mandate," he told a press conference after opening the Express Rail Link (ERL) Station at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport2 (Klia2) here today.
The government commitment to release the report was voiced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak last week. 
Hishammuddin, who is also defence minister, said he would be going to Australia next week to discuss the new phase of search operation for MH370 which now focused on deep sea search, including the financial aspect. 
He said any announcement pertaining to the cost of search for the new phase would also be made next week, if the stakeholders reached a consensus and agreement on it.
"But we don't know what the cost would be until we decide where to search, what assets are going to be used and who are going to supply those assets," he said, adding that three ministerial committees had been working on the matter.
During a press conference in Canberra on Monday, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the search was now entering a new phase with more focus to be given over a much larger underwater search area. 
He said it would involve commercial contractors with a high degree of specialisation in deep ocean search which would cost about AUD60 million (RM184 million).
Abbott added that Australia would seek "some appropriate contribution" from other nations involved in the search operation.
Flight MH370 with 239 people on board disappeared from radar screens about an hour into its flight while over the South China Sea on March 8. 
A multinational search was mounted for the plane, first in the South China Sea and then, it was learnt that the plane had veered off course and its flight path ended in the southern Indian Ocean. Bernama

NSTP/Yazit Razali








4 / 29 / 14 .....







Various theories and perceived sighting of the wreckage.....



http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com : another-mh370-sighting-is-this-it-us-pilot-claims-plane-still-in-one-piece-underwater-right-where-it-vanished-from-radar



Tuesday, 29 April 2014 06:45

ANOTHER SIGHTING - IS THIS MORE LIKELY? US pilot claims MH370 still 'IN ONE PIECE' off M'sian coast right where it vanished

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ANOTHER SIGHTING - IS THIS MORE LIKELY? US pilot claims MH370 still 'IN ONE PIECE' off M'sian coast right where it vanished
A pilot from New York believes he has found the wreckage of the missing Malaysia Airline Flight 370 off the coast of Thailand after searching thousands of satellite images online.
Michael Hoebel, 60, spent hours trawling through the images made available to the public on a crowd-sourcing website, TomNod.com, before coming across what he believes is the doomed plane.
The recreational pilot from Tonawanda said he was shocked to discover that the aircraft, which vanished two months ago, appeared to be in one piece beneath the water off the northeast coast of Malaysia, just west of Songkhla in Thailand. The image was taken days after the crash.
Is it the wreckage? Michael Hoebel is pictured showing an image of what he believes is the wreckage of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. He found the image on a website that shares satellite images
Is it the wreckage? Michael Hoebel is pictured showing an image of what he believes is the wreckage of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. He found the image on a website that shares satellite images
'The perfect size': He said he used a scale given by the website and compared it to the specifications listed on Boeing's website - and discovered that the figure in the water was the right size
'The perfect size': He said he used a scale given by the website and compared it to the specifications listed on Boeing's website - and discovered that the figure in the water was the right size
Discovery: He said that the lighter markings on the image matched up with the design of the plane
Discovery: He said that the lighter markings on the image matched up with the design of the plane
He told WIVB that he used the scale at the bottom of the map on TomNod and compared them to the specs on Boeing's website to establish that the white figure he saw was the perfect size.
'I was taken aback because I couldn't believe I would find this,' he told the news channel.
Where is the plane? A map shows where Hoebel believes the plane is, compared to its intended flight (red line) and suspected flight path (in blue)
Where is the plane? A map shows where Hoebel believes the plane is, compared to its intended flight (red line) and suspected flight path (in blue)
He pointed to the image on his computer as he explained why he thought it was the missing airliner.
'The lighter skin where the wing attaches to the fuselage - you see that lighter skin,' he said, comparing the grainy image to a photograph of the make of plane.
And when WIVB reporter Ed Drantch questioned if the shadow could be a shark, Hoebel responded: 'That's a 210ft shark.'
TomNod allows members of the public to go through millions of satellite pictures in a bid to help investigate the crash.
It also allows other users to rate whether or not they agree with another user's theory - and so far, no one has disagreed with Hoebel's, he said.
No one else has noted finding the wreckage at the same spot, he added.
He said that he started searching for the plane because he wanted to aid the investigation to help the families who had lost loved ones.
He added that he has contacted the NTSB and the FBI with what he found - but so far they have not contacted him in response.
This weekend, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said surface search efforts for the plane have been scaled back because it is 'highly unlikely' clues will be found on the surface.
Certain: Hoebel said that he had looked through thousands of satellite images to come across this one
Certain: Hoebel said he looked through thousands of satellite images to find the potential wreckage
Hobby: The recreational pilot, 60, said that he felt deeply for the families who have lost their loved ones
Hobby: The recreational pilot, 60, said that he felt deeply for the families who have lost their loved ones

Instead, the search will enter a new phase with the focus on the ocean floor - despite there being no 'pings' from what was earlier hoped were the aircraft's black boxes.
Mr Abbott said that as the aircraft, which had 239 people on board, has been missing for 52 days, if there had been any debris from the aircraft it would have now sunk.
Malaysia's Prime Minister, Mr Najib Razak, has also conceded that investigators have made no substantial progress since March 8 - the date that the plane is believed to have crashed.
'That's all we have until today,' Mr Najib told the Wall Street Journal.
No signs: Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless concluded its work searching for the black box on Friday
No signs: Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless concluded its work searching for the black box on Friday
Are they looking in the right place? A map shows the planned search areas just west of Australia
Are they looking in the right place? A map shows the planned search areas just west of Australia
No answers: Relatives of some of the Chinese passengers on board the Malaysia Airlines flight comfort each other as they continued their sit-in protest outside the Malaysian embassy in Beijing
No answers: Relatives of some of the Chinese passengers on board the Malaysia Airlines flight comfort each other as they continued their sit-in protest outside the Malaysian embassy in Beijing - Dailymail


http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com :here-we-go-again-mh370-found-marine-firm-claims-wreckage-in-bay-of-bengal





Tuesday, 29 April 2014 06:46

MH370 'FOUND' - Aussie marine firm claims wreckage in BAY OF BENGAL

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MH370 'FOUND' - Aussie marine firm claims wreckage in BAY OF BENGAL
A marine exploration company based in Australia claims it may have located the wreckage of Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 - 3,000 miles away from where authorities have been looking.
The aircraft, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, left Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 12.41am on March 8 and disappeared from radar screens about an hour later, while over the South China Sea. It was due to have arrived in Beijing at 6.30am on the same day.
A multinational search was mounted for the plane and analysis by the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch concluded that Flight MH370's last position was in the middle of the Indian Ocean, west of Perth, Australia - an outcome later backed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
However, According to Australian news Channel 7 News, the Adelaide-based company GeoResonance says its own private research has identified elements on the ocean floor in the Bay of Bengal consistent with material from a plane.
GeoResonance’s search covered 2million sq km of the possible crash zone, using images obtained from satellites and aircraft.
Scientists focused their efforts north of MH370’s last known location, using more than 20 technologies to analyse the data including a nuclear reactor.
According to company spokesperson David Pope, “The technology that we use was originally designed to find nuclear warheads, submarines. Our team in the Ukraine decided we should try and help.”
GeoResonance experts compared their findings with images taken on March 5, three days before MH370 was reported missing – and they did not find what they had detected at that spot.
“The wreckage wasn’t there prior to the disappearance of MH370.
"We’re not trying to say that it definitely is MH370 - however, it is a lead we feel should be followed up,” said Pope.
“We identified chemical elements and materials that make up a Boeing 777 … these are aluminium, titanium, copper, steel alloys and other materials."
Six weeks have now passed since the plane disappeared and extensive searches in the Indian Ocean have failed to locate any wreckage.
Earlier today, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott admitted the chance of finding debris on the surface was 'slim to none'.
He said efforts will not focus on the ocean floor, but GeoResonance believes authorities have been looking in the wrong place.
It started its own search for the missing aircraft on March 10 and staff said they could not believe what they found in the Bay of Bengal.
“Our team was very excited when we found what we believe to be the wreckage of a commercial airliner,” Mr Pope said.
An initial report was sent to authorities while the aircraft's black box still had two weeks of battery power.
The full report was delivered on April 15. - Daily Mirror

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Star Online.....



Nation



Published: Tuesday April 29, 2014 MYT 4:31:00 PM
Updated: Tuesday April 29, 2014 MYT 5:41:03 PM

MH370: Findings by Australian exploration company yet to be verified, says Hisham

An image of Monday’s search area released by Australia’s Joint Agency Coordination Centre
An image of Monday’s search area released by Australia’s Joint Agency Coordination Centre
   
KUALA LUMPUR: A claim by an Australian exploration company that it has detected the wreckage of missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 in the Bay of Bengal has yet to be verified, said Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.
The Acting Transport Minister said the claim by GeoResonance would be discussed during the MH370 Technical Committee meeting.
“There have been too many speculations out there ... it is impossible to entertain them all.
“However, the search mission is still ongoing and the status quo remains,” he told pressmen after meeting Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera at Wisma Pertahanan here, Monday.
Adelaide-based GeoResonance said Monday that it had begun its own search on March 10, two days after flight MH370 went missing, and that possible wreckage had been detected in the Bay of Bengal, 5,000km away from the current search location in the southern Indian Ocean, off Perth.
GeoResonance’s search covered 2,000,000 sq km of the possible crash zone using images obtained from satellites and aircraft, with company scientists focusing their efforts north of MH370’s last known location. Over 20 technologies were used to analyse the data, including a nuclear reactor.
In another development, Hishammuddin said Malaysian authorities would discuss the possibility of increasing assets for the second phase of the search mission with their Australian counterparts.
“We need to reach an understanding with Australia on the funding for additional assets.
“We are entering the second phase. At the same time we have to be fair to Australia as we have not discussed the financial implication,” Hishammuddin said.
He added that the second phase would involve combing the seabed for any sign of wreckage.
Hishammuddin, who is also Defence Minister, vowed that the search operation would not stop until wreckage is found.

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http://www.cbsnews.com/news/malaysia-airlines-flight-370-georesonance-wreckage-of-a-commercial-airliner-found/

*****


Australian land and sea survey company GeoResonance said in a statement sent Tuesday to CBS News that it had discovered materials "believed to be the wreckage of a commercial airliner" about 100 miles south of Bangladesh in the Bay of Bengal using proprietary technology which scans vast areas for specific metals or minerals. 


A map provided by GeoResonance

A map provided by GeoResonance on April 29, 2014, shows the location, indicated with a yellow icon, where the company located materials it believes are consistent with the "wreckage of a commercial airliner," in the Bay of Bengal, about 100 miles south of Bangladesh.
 GEORESONANCE


****



"During the search for MH370, GeoResonance searched for chemical elements that make up a Boeing 777: aluminum, titanium, copper, steel alloys, jet fuel residue, and several other substances. The aim was to find a location where all those elements were present," said the company in the written statement.
Scanning "multispectral images" taken from the air on March 10 -- two days after Flight 370 went missing -- GeoResonance says it found "an anomaly in one place in the Bay of Bengal" where many of those relevant materials were detected in significant amounts, and in a pattern which matched the approximate layout of a large aircraft.


A graphic from GeoResonance shows images depicting underwater "anomalies" suggesting deposits of various metals in the approximate formation of a passenger airliner on the floor of the Bay of Bengal

A graphic from GeoResonance shows images depicting underwater "anomalies" suggesting deposits of various metals in the approximate formation of a passenger airliner on the floor of the Bay of Bengal.
 GEORESONANCE

The company said analysis of images take of the same area five days earlier showed the "anomaly had appeared between the 5th and 10th of March 2014."
In a statement released to the press on Tuesday, Malaysian Acting Minister of Transport Hishammuddin Hussein confirmed that his government was "working with its international partners to assess the credibility of this information."
A U.S. official with knowledge of the investigation told CBS News on Tuesday that they were still in the early stages of gathering information about GeoResonance's claim, but they were "very skeptical" it would lead to anything, given all the data that investigators have been working with points to the southern Indian Ocean. 
A team of experts working for the International Investigation Team have been studying the data available on the flight, which includes the attempted communications between Flight 370 and satellites which led officials to focus their search in the so-called Southern Arc. They continue to analyze that data and their focus remains to the south, says CBS News transportation correspondent Jeff Pegues.
British satellite company Inmarsat provided the relevant data to the Malaysian government -- a final seven "pings" recorded from the plane to the satellite. Based on those pings alone, two possible flight paths for the plane were charted from its last known location; one heading north toward the Bay of Bengal, and the other heading south into the Indian Ocean.
On March 24, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak announced that, based on new analysis of that data, Inmarsat and the lead investigators had "concluded that MH370 flew along the southern corridor, and that its last position was in the middle of the Indian Ocean, west of Perth."


Reached Tuesday by CBS News, Inmarsat Vice President Chris McLaughlin said the decision to focus the search for the missing jet solely in the southern corridor was made by the Malaysian government and its search partners, not Inmarsat.
McLaughlin noted that the data was scrutinized by experts from a variety of different countries, and "all agreed the aircraft came down in the southern Indian Ocean."
One of the primary factors in that decision, according to McLaughlin, was the fact that not a single nation along the northern corridor -- which includes the Bangladeshi coast -- reported picking the plane up on domestic radar.
When the decision to focus on the southern Indian Ocean was made, CBS News' Pegues reported that Inmarsat had also contributed one more piece of evidence which helped guide the move: the so-called Doppler effect.
By measuring the sound waves from the plane's final pings, engineers from Inmarsat were able to determine the aircraft's location relative to the satellite; it's the same effect that makes an approaching vehicle sound different to the human ear than one moving away. The analysis of this data from Inmarsat suggested the plane had travelled south, reported Pegues.
Inmarsat engineers compared Flight 370's direction and speed against six other Boeing 777s flying the same day in various directions. The findings were said to confirm the plane could not have gone north, and instead most likely crashed in the southern Indian Ocean.
There have been many false leads in the hunt for the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 since it disappeared from commercial radar northeast of Manila on March 8.
Investigators still believe the plane made an inexplicable about-face after losing contact, heading southwest into the Indian Ocean.
Officials said Monday that with not a clue found to date, the huge search area about 1,000 miles southwest of Perth, Australia -- which has been combed fastidiously by a robotic U.S. Navy submarine using sonar imaging -- would beexpanded significantly and the air search called off.
"It is highly unlikely at this stage that we will find any aircraft debris on the ocean surface. By this stage, 52 days into the search, most material would have become waterlogged and sunk," Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Tuesday.
"Therefore, we are moving from the current phase to a phase which is focused on searching the ocean floor over a much larger area," he said. That search, according to Abbott, could take at least eight months.
GeoResonance said it first alerted officials with Malaysia Airlines, and the Chinese and Malaysian embassies in Australia, that possible aircraft debris had been found in the general area of its discovery on March 31, "well before the black box batteries had expired."
"These details were also passed onto the Australian authorities (JACC) in Perth on April 4, 2014. A more detailed study was completed in early April. The final 23 page report including the precise location of the wreckage was passed onto Malaysian Airlines, Malaysian High Commission in Canberra, Chinese Embassy in Canberra, and the Australian authorities (JACC) on April 15, 2014," according to the company.

It was not immediately clear whether the international search team has previously investigated GeoResonance's information.






AND......







New Straits Times......



MH370 Tragedy: Ex-DCA DG to lead international investigation team

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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has hired Datuk Kok Soo Chon, a former director-general at the department of civil aviation, to lead the international investigation team tasked to find the cause of the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, the government said today.

Other team members are from the U.S. National Transport Safety Board, Britain's Air Accidents Investigations Branch, China's Aircraft Accident Investigation Department, France's Land Transport Accident Investigation Bureau, the Australia Transport Safety Bureau, aircraft manufacturer Boeing and British satellite communications company Inmarsat.
The team also has representatives from Singapore and Indonesia.
"The main purpose of the international investigation team is to evaluate, investigate and determine the actual cause of the incident so similar incidents could be avoided in the future,"  Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said.
The investigation, he said in a statement, "is not aimed at apportioning blame or liability with regards to the incident".
The search for Flight MH370, which vanished while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8 with 239 people on board, has so far failed to turn up any trace of wreckage from the plane.
Efforts have focused on a vast expanse of water in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Western Australia. It remains unclear what caused the Boeing 777 to veer sharply off course and disappear from radar as it prepared to cross into Vietnamese airspace.
Malaysia will discuss with other countries involved in the search, the deployment of equipment with deep sea search capabilities, the cost of the operation and how best to keep next of kin informed. It is also verifying reports of potential wreckage sightings in the Bay of Bengal, the statement said.   --REUTERS

Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein speaks during a press conference held in Kuala lumpur on April 23. Pix by Asyraf Hamzah



MH370 Tragedy: Press statement by Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

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ACTING MINISTER OF TRANSPORT

YB Dato’ Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said:

“The fact that MH370 has still not been found underscores the complexity and difficulty of this search operation.
We are tremendously grateful for the effort the Australian authorities have made, leading the search for MH370 off the coast of Perth.

“Malaysia will discuss with our international counterparts, including Australia, how the new search operation, as announced by Prime Minister Abbott on Monday, will proceed.
This discussion will include issues such as the deployment of assets with deep sea search capabilities, the cost of the operation and how best authorities can ensure the next of kin of those onboard MH370 are properly informed of the latest developments.

“In line with Malaysia’s consistent stand of verifying and corroborating any new lead since Day 1 of the search operations, we are aware of a report citing the detection of potential aircraft wreckage in the Bay of Bengal.
China and Australia are also aware of this report. Malaysia is working with its international partners to assess the credibility of this information.”
We have also appointed the Investigator in Charge for the International Investigation Team – Dato Kok Soo Chon.
He is the former Director General of the Department of Civil Aviation and also a former permanent representative to the ICAO Council in Montreal.
The International Investigation Team, which has already commenced its work, has accredited representatives from the US National Transport Safety Board (NTSB), the UK Air Accident Investigation Bereau (AAIB), China’s Aircraft Accident Investigation Department (AAID) of The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), France’s Bureau d'Enquêtes et d'Analyses (BEA), the Austrialia Transport Safety Bereau (ATSB) and representatives of ASEAN from Singapore and Indonesia.
Included in the team are also Boeing, who is under the US Accredited Representative and Rolls Royce and Inmarsat, who are under the UK Accredited Representative.
The main purpose of the International Investigation Team is to evaluate, investigate and determine the actual cause of the incident so similar incidents could be avoided in the future.
I would like to stress that this investigation is not aimed at apportioning blame or liability with regards to the incident.
It is imperative for the government to form this independent team of investigators which is not only competent and transparent but also highly credible.
This investigation will be carried out in accordance with Annex 13 -  Aircraft Accident and Incident Investigation to the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention) as implemented by the Civil Aviation Regulations 1996, which requires each party to investigate air accidents independently with full powers in their respective countries. 

FILE PICTURE. Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein during a press conference of the Missing MH370 flight at Royale Chulan Hotel. NSTP/Yazit Razali


MH370 Tragedy: Two C-130 Hercules aircraft to return home

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PERTH: Two Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) C-130 Hercules aircraft are scheduled to return to Malaysia today night after aerial searches for a missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) plane were suspended following an announcement on the intensification of the underwater search.

RMAF 20th Squadron chief Major Muhammad Jafri Suboh said the two planes would depart at 9 pm while another RMAF C-130 would for the time being remain here until further notice.
Muhammad Jafri, who is the detachment commander of the RMAF search operation here, said that 53 air, ground and support crew from the total 78 RMAF personnel involved in the operation would leave Base Pearce tonight.
"Personally I see that all my personnel have shown a high level of commitment and professionalism whether they are undertaking flight duties or the maintenance crew.
"They work hard 24 hours to ensure the aircraft is ready to fly," he told Bernama and RTM when met at the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Pearce in Bullsbrook.
The two RMAF planes along with the 53 crew are expected to arrive at the RMAF base in Subang around 10 am on Wednesday.
The involvement of RMAF personnel in the search operation in the Indian Ocean for the MAS Flight MH370, missing since March 8, began on March 29.
On Monday, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott told a media conference in Canberra that the search mission would enter a new phase with more focus to be given over a much larger area of the ocean floor.
He said the decision was made after considering, among others, that it was highly unlikely at this stage that any aircraft debris would be found on the ocean surface.
However, he pointed out that a few vessels from Australia, Malaysia and China would continue with the maritime search and that RAAF P3-Orion aircraft would be put on standby.
Commenting further on the overall RMAF mission here, Muhammad Jafri said it was a proud for moment for RMAF and the crew to have been able to join the multinational search mission.
He said although the aerial search had stopped at this stage, the RMAF personnel were ready to return to action if needed.
Meanwhile, RAAF group commander Craig Heap thanked and praised the RMAF team for their "tremendous job" delivered with a high level of dedication and professionalism as the three RMAF planes undertook 43 missions and overcame numerous challenges, particularly extreme weather conditions.
Heap noted that all the six nations involved in the air search operation had to battle long hours of visual searching amid challenging conditions, including those posed by the weather.
"But we were tremendously motivated to arrive at an outcome and bring closure for the families of those aboard the Malaysian plane," he said.
Heap said that cooperation with RMAF, which had been going on long before the search operation was initiated, would continue although the aerial search mission in the Indian Ocean had ceased.
The six nations involved in the aerial search were Malaysia, Australia, the United States, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea.
Heap pointed out that the Australian P3-Orion would be put on standby at Base Pearce while the aircraft from other nations would return to their home countries in stages over the next few days.
They might rejoin the search operation if required, he added.
Flight MH370 with 239 people onboard disappeared from radar screens about an hour into its flight while over the South China Sea.
A multinational search was mounted for the plane, first in the South China Sea and then, after it was learnt that the plane had veered off course, in the southern Indian Ocean.-- BERNAMA

In this April 17 file pic, a Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) C-130 Hercules aircraft takes off from Pearce Airbase in Perth, Australia. AP Photo


MH370 Tragedy: Japan requests to join expert panel

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KUALA LUMPUR: Japan has requested to take part in the international panel of experts looking into the Malaysia Airlines MH370 tragedy, said Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.

He said Japan was welcomed to join in as the panel was transparent and credible.
"We have no problem getting people to come onboard because the whole world wants to know about MH370 and, like I said before, probably what we find out about MH370 will change the history of aviation," he told reporters.
Hishammuddin had earlier received a courtesy visit from his Japanese counterpart Itsunori Onodera at the Defence Ministry in Jalan Semarak, here, today.
He noted that Malaysia and Japan were keen to continue working on issues like ensuring peace and stability in the region, disaster relief, sharing information on counter-terrorism and the defence industry.
On reports that Japan had withdrawn from the search operation for the missing aircraft, Hishammuddin said: "It's very far from the truth. It's defence minister came just now to ask what more they could do to help.
"This shows their commitment to the search effort is still strong."
This was the first meeting between Hishammuddin and Onodera since the latter became Japan's defence minister in December, 2012.
Flight MH370 with 239 people onboard disappeared on March 8 while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. 
An undersea search operation headed by Australia is currently being conducted in the waters off Perth, Australia.-- BERNAMA

Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein receives a courtesy call from his Japanese counterpart Itsunori Onodera at the Defence Ministry in Jalan Semarak. Pix by Yazit Razali