Thursday, April 10, 2014

Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Mystery - Day 34 April 10 . 2014 -CURIOUS LACK OF DEBRIS: Was MH370 carefully landed in ocean & allowed to slowly SINK? ( Or did it land on lans somewhere - let's ask that question ) ..... Efforts to locates floating debris associated with flight 370 continue as 14 Military and Civilian Aircraft , along with 13 Ships are assisting in search efforts today ........ the hunt for additional black box pings continues as the search area continues to narrow , searchers are more optimistic the plan may be shortly found - but note the difficulties ahead in recovering the black boxes in the extremely deep waters ! We literally are in uncharted waters , at a depth of 15 000 feet !

Late Afternoon / Evening  April 10 , 2014 ( EDT )  Updates ... .was-mh370-deliberately-landed-in-ocean-allowed-to-slowly-sink-is-this-why-there-is-no-debris ?

(  Authorities reduced to speculating  as to two explanations but why not consider a third one - that the plane landed elsewhere and on land ? )

Thursday, 10 April 2014 16:00

CURIOUS LACK OF DEBRIS: Was MH370 carefully landed in ocean & allowed to slowly SINK?

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CURIOUS LACK OF DEBRIS: Was MH370 carefully landed in ocean & allowed to slowly SINK?
EXPERTS inside the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH 370 Joint Agency Coordination Centre believe there are just two possible explanations for the lack of debris on the ocean surface from the downed jet.
The wide-bodied Boeing 777 was either flown under control into the ocean, largely intact and sank to the bottom in one piece or its wreckage was scattered by a cyclone that passed through the search area soon after the search began.
In late March there were fears that Cyclone Gillian, which set off a cyclone warning in the southern corridor, could hamper search and rescue operations.
Hunt continues ... Jenna Shiel supervises on the gun direction of HMAS Perth during the s
Hunt continues ... Jenna Shiel supervises on the gun direction of HMAS Perth during the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean.
In calm seas it is possible to “ditch” a jet airliner in one piece and phantom wartime bombers have even been known to land on their own after all the aircrew bailed out.
Fourteen ships, including seven from the Chinese Navy, and 14 aircraft have been unable to find a single piece of wreckage.
Search ... the Ocean Shield drop sonar buoys to assist in the acoustic search for Flight
Search ... the Ocean Shield drop sonar buoys to assist in the acoustic search for Flight MH370. Source: AFP
The lack of flotsam has authorities baffled.
“It is painstaking work to scour a massive area but we are perplexed about the lack of wreckage,” a source said.
“We expect to find some debris such as the wing (fuel) tanks that are air tight and would float.”
It is understood that the battery life of the locator beacons attached to the flight data and cockpit voice recorders will last for up to 45 days so the Australian Defence vessel Ocean Shield still has about 12 days left to isolate the signal.
Once that happens an unmanned underwater vehicle can be sent 4500-metres down to try and retrieve the boxes and photograph any wreckage.
Meanwhile the US will send a supply ship into the search area this week to relieve the Australian replenishment vessel HMAS Success that has been operating 24/7 in the area for 18 days.
The multinational search effort has had a positive spin-off with the military forces of the US and China operating more closely than ever before and a Malaysian ship conducting its first ever replenishment at sea from HMAS Success.

( Hmm , already setting the stage for nothing useful from the black boxes )

Thursday, 10 April 2014 18:42

SAME THING FOR MH370? UK reveals how another MAS plane had engine trouble & all its BLACK BOX DATA LOST

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SAME THING FOR MH370? UK reveals how another MAS plane had engine trouble & all its BLACK BOX DATA LOST
A Malaysia Airlines jumbo jet had to return to Heathrow due to engine trouble - and all black box cockpit voice recorder data was lost, it has emerged.
As the hunt for missing flight MH370 continues, UK air accident investigators have revealed an earlier serious incident involving the same airline.
The Boeing 747 had to return to the west London airport after significant vibration was noted on one of the engines shortly after departure for Kuala Lumpur, said the report by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB).
During the approach to land back at Heathrow, all three autopilots disengaged, the cockpit displays and lights flickered and a series of fault messages were displayed.
There was a subsequent loss of power to some systems but the captain, with 340 passengers and 22 crew aboard, managed to make a safe landing at 11.20pm on August 17 2012.
The jumbo jet had a cockpit voice recorder (CVR) - a device which can record the last two hours of cockpit conversations.
The AAIB, which classed the incident as "serious" in its report today, said the CVR continued to run for some time after the aircraft landed "and as a result all relevant CVR recordings were lost".
The AAIB said: "The investigation determined that the operator's procedures for the preservation of flight recording was not sufficiently robust to ensure that recordings would be preserved in a timely manner following an incident or accident."
The report said that Malaysia Airlines had "expressed willingness to address this issue" and updated its procedures.
The AAIB said there had been a series of failures within the aircraft's electrical system.
The report listed action taken by Boeing after the incident.
The CVR and the flight data recorder comprise the black box equipment on passenger aircraft.
The boxes are actually orange and their recovery in the case of Malaysia Airlines flight 370 could solve the mystery of the plane's disappearance. - Daily Mirror

MH370 TRAGEDY: Search and recovery continues (Day 34)

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PERTH: Up to 10 military aircraft, four civil aircraft and 13 ships will assist in today's search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

Aircraft and ships reported spotting a large number of objects during yesterday's search, but only a small number were able to be recovered.
None of the recovered items were believed to be associated with MH370.
Today AMSA has planned a search area of about 57,923 square kilometres.
The centre of the search area lies approximately 2280 kilometres north west of Perth.
Moderate south easterly winds with isolated showers are forecast. Visibility will be fair (5000 metres) during the showers.
The underwater search continues today, with ADV Ocean Shield at the northern end of the defined search area, and Chinese ship Haixun 01 and HMS Echo at the southern end.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau continues to refine the area where the aircraft entered the water based on continuing ground-breaking and multi-disciplinary technical analysis of satellite communication and aircraft performance, passed from the international air crash investigative team comprising analysts from Malaysia, the United States, the United Kingdom, China and Australia. -- JACC

MH370 TRAGEDY: Hunt for black box signals zeroes in on 'final resting place'

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PERTH (Australia): The hunt for more black box "pings" from missing Malaysian airliner MH370 was narrowing Thursday to a specific patch of remote ocean after two more signals were detected.

The head of the Australian-led search Angus Houston raised hopes Wednesday that wreckage will be found within days even as the black box batteries start to expire.
Houston's Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) announced Thursday the search area off western Australia was now 57,923 square kilometres (22,364 square miles) -- some 20,000 square kilometres down on Wednesday.
But Australian ship Ocean Shield is focused on an area of the Indian Ocean 2,280 kilometres (1,400 miles) northwest of Perth where it picked up two fresh signals Tuesday to match a pair of transmissions logged over the weekend as searchers try to pinpoint the exact crash zone.
No debris from the Boeing 777 which disappeared on March 8 has yet been found.
A large number of objects were spotted on the surface on Wednesday, JACC said, "but only a small number were able to be recovered.
"None of the recovered items were believed to be associated with MH370."
Officials had feared that the signals which were initially picked up might not be detected again, particularly since the batteries on the black box tracking beacons have a normal lifespan of about 30 days.
"Yesterday's signals will assist in better defining a reduced and much more manageable search area on the ocean floor," Houston told a press conference.
"I believe we are searching in the right area but we need to visually identify the aircraft before we can confirm with certainty that this is the final resting place of MH370."
Houston, however, again urged caution for the sake of the families of those aboard the flight which mysteriously vanished en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board, and said the search for more signals would go on.
"Hopefully with lots of transmissions we'll have a tight, small area and... in a matter of days we'll be able to find something on the bottom that might confirm that this is the last resting place of MH370," he said.
Australia confirmed Wednesday that the first signals were consistent with black box recorders.
"The analysis determines that a very stable distinct and clear signal was detected at 33.331 kHz and that it consistently pulsed at a 1.106 second interval," Houston said, explaining that the exact frequencies can vary according to time and conditions.
"They (experts) believe the signals to be consistent with the specification and description of a flight data recorder," he said.
No other ships will be allowed near the Ocean Shield, as its work must be done in an environment as free of noise as possible.
With the clock ticking on how long the black boxes could feasibly continue to transmit, Houston said it would not be long before a US-made autonomous underwater vehicle called a Bluefin 21 would be sent down to investigate.
"I don't think that time is very far away," he said.
Up to 10 military aircraft, four civil planes and 13 ships would take part in the search on Thursday, JACC said.
Fair visibility was predicted for the day with moderate southeasterly winds and isolated showers.
The case of the missing jet has baffled aviation experts and frustrated the families of those on board, two-thirds of whom were Chinese.
"I want to see the evidence that the plane is at the bottom of the sea," said Malaysian Tan Tuan Lay, whose daughter, 31-year-old bank employee Chew Kar Mooi, was one of the passengers on board.
"I am really sad (about) what has happened but I am prepared to accept whatever comes," Tan said when asked to comment on the fresh signals. -- AFP

Thursday, 10 April 2014 06:24

MH370 wreckage may be found in the NEXT FEW DAYS - investigators

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MH370 wreckage may be found in the NEXT FEW DAYS - investigators
Investigators are optimistic that they can soon locate wreckage from the missingMalaysian Air (MAS) jet in the Indian Ocean after reacquiring acoustic pings that may emanate from the flight recorders.
Australian search vessel Ocean Shield detected a signal two more times, a possible step toward narrowing the hunt enough to deploy a robot submarine to scan the seabed. The sounds are consistent with those from beacons on Flight 370’s black boxes, said retired Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, who heads Australia’s Joint Agency Coordination Centre.
“Hopefully with lots of transmissions, we will have a tight, small area -- and hopefully in a matter of days we will be able to find something on the bottom,” Houston told reporters yesterday in Perth.
The pulses heard on April 8 following two April 5 contacts bolstered authorities’ confidence that they are finally zeroing in on debris a month after Flight 370 vanished. Knowing where to start underwater surveillance is pivotal before committing the Ocean Shield’s sonar-equipped submersible.
The two most recent sounds were faint and partially obscured by background noise, according toPhoenix International Holdings Inc., the Largo, Maryland-based contractor operating the U.S. Navy’s towed pinger locator aboard the Ocean Shield.
‘Very Distinct’
“While they didn’t hold that signal for a long time, it still had a very distinct repetition rate and audible signal,” General Manager Jim Gibson said in an interview. Australia’s JACC said one of the contacts lasted for 5 minutes and 32 seconds, and the other for 7 minutes.
Fading power reserves for the beacons on the Boeing Co. 777-200ER’s cockpit-voice and flight-data recorders add urgency to the search. The batteries are nearing the end of their life span after the Malaysian Airline System Bhd. plane disappeared en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur on March 8. On board were 239 passengers and crew members.
Malaysia is “cautiously more optimistic,” Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said in a Twitter posting after Houston’s press conference. “Pray latest leads will help us all move ahead.”
The Ocean Shield carries an unmanned sub, the Bluefin-21, that is ready to launch and start scouring the seafloor with sound waves once the search zone is refined, Houston said. Water depths in the area exceed about 4,500 meters (14,800 feet), far from any natural light from the surface.
‘Probability Circle’
By passing back and forth across the area, the search vessel and the towed pinger locator are “narrowing the probability circle of where the debris field is suspected to be,” said John Fish, a principal of Bourne, Massachusetts-based American Underwater Search & Survey Ltd.
Sounds from the pingers don’t travel as far when the signal weakens, so picking up the new contacts suggests that the Ocean Shield is getting closer to the wreckage, said Fish, whose company has helped recover numerous aircraft and their black-box recorders from underwater.
The pingers have a range of about 2 miles (3.2 kilometers), according to the manufacturer, Dukane Seacom, a unit of Hollywood, Florida-based Heico Corp. (HEI/A) The black-box maker is Morris Township, New Jersey-based Honeywell International Inc. (HON)
‘Very Difficult’
Dukane Seacom has analyzed data collected on the pings and concluded that the signals “would be very difficult to be anything else than the acoustic signature of a beacon,” President Anish Patel said in a telephone interview. “Does it have to be the black-box beacon? It could be something else, but the likelihood of it being something else is doubtful.”
Analysis of earlier pings heard by the Ocean Shield determined that a “very stable” signal was detected at 33.331 kilohertz and it consistently pulsed at 1.106-second intervals, JACC’s Houston said. Two signals -- one lasting two hours and 20 minutes and the other for 13 minutes -- were detected after the deployment of the pinger locator. On the second pass, two pinger signatures were recorded simultaneously, Houston said April 7.
Dukane Seacom’s pingers are supposed to pulse at 37.5 kilohertz. While the units are designed to have a tolerance of plus or minus one kilohertz from the intended frequency, the difference between the intended signal and the pulses picked up at sea in recent days may not be significant, Patel said.
Frequency Shift
Tests on a beacon recovered from Air France Flight 447, the jet that crashed in the South Atlantic in 2009, found that the unit had shifted frequency after months on the ocean floor, transmitting at 34 kilohertz, Patel said.
According to a map from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, the four pings heard so far came from a triangular zone with one side almost 30 kilometers long. The distances between the four detections may be explained by the fact that there are two black boxes, each with a pinger, Fish said.
Even after sending the Bluefin-21 into the water to prowl the ocean bottom with sonar, the search may face complications because of a blanket of silt several meters deep on the seabed, Houston said.
“I am now optimistic that we will find the aircraft, or what is left of the aircraft in the not-too-distant future,” Houston said. “But we haven’t found it yet because this is a very challenging business.”
Houston said the location of the pings is lining up with other evidence of where the plane may be. The underwater sounds were detected near where analysts estimate a final, partial satellite signal was received from the Malaysian plane, Houston said.
Flight’s End
That last pulse to an Inmarsat Plc (ISAT) satellite is where investigators believe the 777’s two engines may have flamed out, Houston said. “It’s probably significant in terms of the end of powered flight,” he said.
The jet’s disappearance is now the longest in modern airline history, baffling authorities because contact was lost less than an hour into a routine trip as Flight 370 headed north over the Gulf of Thailand. After vanishing from radar, the wide-body craft doubled back, flew over Peninsular Malaysia and on into some of the world’s most remote waters.
While the motive behind that heading remains unknown, Flight 370 was deliberately steered south on a path ending in the Indian Ocean, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has said.
Detecting the pings has transformed the nature of the hunt for clues, Phoenix’s Gibson said.
“At the end of the day it’s not a small area, but it’s an area that is certainly more manageable than starting out with hundreds of thousands of square miles,” Gibson said.

Thursday, 10 April 2014 07:05

PLUMBING NEW DEPTH: Missing flight MH370 & the M'sian govt

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PLUMBING NEW DEPTH: Missing flight MH370 & the M'sian govt
FOR anyone in any doubt about the scale of the task facing the team trying to recover the flight recorder from Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, the Washington Post has published an excellent graphic. The Post gives some idea of the depths to which the crews will need to sink by scaling the distance to the sea-bed against some impressive examples. America's Sea Wolf class submarines, for example, can make it down to about 1,600 feet. Giant squids have been recorded at a depth of 2,600 feet, roughly the depth of an inverted Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building in Dubai. A sperm whale has been known to dive to 3,280 feet, while the Titanic came to rest 12,500 feet down.
The Malaysian plane's black-box signal, meanwhile, was recorded at a depth of 15,000 feet. That is nearly three miles down, where the pressure is a mind-boggling 6,680 psi. Add to this that, as the BBC reports, the topography the ocean floor is poorly charted, and it will be remarkable should they manage to recover it. One hopes that, for the grieving families' peace of mind, they do so somehow.