#MH370: Latest Updates in the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370


 Updated: Wednesday 7 December 2016

 MH370 Debris Overview of confirmed and to be examined debris
(Click icon for info & images) | Enlarged Map: http://tinyurl.com/DebrisMapMH370 | Full Search Map of Events as they were unfolding http://tinyurl.com/WhereIsMH370

MH370 Debris Overview


Click here to enlarge

Summary of Events 


Click here to enlarge

Operational Search  Updates:  ATSB  |  All Search Updates JACC >>
ATSB News >> | ATSB Correcting The Record | Debris Examination Reports 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 |

Summary of Possible MH370 Debris Recovered:  15 AUGUST 201614 October 2016 |

MH370 Official Site >> | MOT Malaysia |  Press Releases Minister of Transport Malaysia Liow Liong Lai>> | Media Releases Minister of Infrastructure AU >>


Media Releases by rss >>NEWSFEED >>   |  (Watch Top Breaking News Headlines LIVE here >>

ps. This blogpost is part of MH370.bookofresearch.com | MH370 Search Overview


Documentation of Latest Updates in the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370

 


Wednesday 7 December 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/806349960878821376

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator paused underwater search operations on Tuesday, 6 December 2016, and commenced passage to Fremantle for a routine re-supply.  It will then return to the search area to continue using the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV).  Over the past week, Fugro Equator completed a total of 4 successful AUV missions, with an average duration of 23 hours.
  • On Saturday, 3 December 2016, Dong Hai Jiu 101 concluded underwater search operations and commenced passage to Fremantle to demobilise the Phoenix Remora III Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) before the vessel returns to Shanghai.
    Dong Hai Jiu 101 has completed 33 dives with the ROV since October 2016.

Underwater search operations

As has been reported in previous Updates, search operations moved from deep tow operations to AUV and ROV operations in October 2016.

Deep tow vehicles are equipped with side scan sonar and multibeam echo sounders, making them ideal for searching large areas of the seafloor in a single pass.  They are towed behind the vessels on 10 kilometre-long cables and while they require reasonable conditions to safely launch, once they are in the water they can remain deployed for days at a time.

Areas of the seafloor that are difficult or inefficient to search using the deep tow vehicles, for example areas with irregular terrain are searched using the highly maneuverable AUV.  The AUV is also used to reacquire sonar contacts which require further investigation. The AUV must be launched and recovered in relatively calm sea conditions which limits these operations to the better summer weather months in the search area.

The ROV on Dong Hai Jiu 101 has been used to reacquire, investigate and eliminate sonar contacts of potential interest identified during previous deep tow and AUV search operations.

An ROV is launched from the side of the vessel and is tethered by a cable.  The vessel must remain geostationary over the top of the ROV during a dive and therefore these operations must also be conducted in calmer sea conditions.  The sonar contacts reacquired by the ROV in the past swing of Dong Hai Jiu 101 have been shown to be mainly geology with some manmade items, including cables and drums, which have no relationship to MH370.

Deep tow operations of the search area were completed in October 2016.  Since that time AUV and ROV operations have been used to undertake detailed examination of sonar contacts and points of interest, and examine areas not able to be covered by deep tow operations.

The search vessel, Dong Hai Jiu 101, provided by the People’s Republic of China, departed the search area on 3 December 2016 and has completed its missions in the search for MH370.

Fugro Equator’s missions in the remaining parts of the 120,000 square-kilometre search area are expected to be completed in January/February 2017.

Search Status

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on
22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square-kilometre search area.

Ministers have reiterated that this does not mean the termination of the search.  Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, searching the entire 120,000 square-kilometre underwater search area has taken longer than first planned.

Currently it is expected the search operations of the current area will be completed in January/February 2017.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

Weather

A succession of troughs will move across the area from Wednesday.  A high pressure system to the west will extend a ridge into the area on Saturday and move across the area on Sunday.

With no vessels operating in the search area, operations will not be impacted.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates

 


Tuesday 6 December 2016

Six pieces of Madagascar debris handed over to Malaysian investigators today

https://twitter.com/h1ppyg1rl/status/806118338938236928

 

https://twitter.com/cryfortruth/status/805949259900186624

DCA collects debris after families launch MH370 search

Malaysian aviation investigators have collected six pieces of suspected MH370 debris in Madagascar, two days after seven family members of victims arrived on the island on their self-funded search.

The family members believe the investigators were prompted to go to Madagascar because of their trip, but Department of Civil Aviation director-general Datuk Seri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman called it a “coincidence”.

Azharuddin told Malay Mail a Malaysian foreign mission near Madagascar was assisting in the retrieval of the debris.

“We also have an agreement with the authorities there that if there is debris found, they will inform us,” he said.

He said the six pieces of debris and personal items were handed over to investigators on Monday, who would bring them back to Malaysia.

“For the debris, we will discuss with our Australian counterparts and hand the personal items to the police.”

Azharuddin said the authorities would be taking a close look at some personal items found as they were “very important”.

“It’s not that we don’t want to take the debris. It’s far away, time consuming and costly to do so. We also have to get visa’s done and engage with the authorities before hand,” he said.

“We want to sign a memorandum of understanding between the countries (which have been discovering suspected debris) but that is not something we can do in just a month.”

Lawyer Grace Nathan, whose mother Anne Daisy was aboard the missing aircraft, posted on Facebook that the Malaysian investigators arrived in Madagascar after debris had been left for six months.

“Malaysian investigators arrived in Madagascar to collect debris, we are grateful that our initiative to come to Madagascar prompted the authorities to act,” she said.

The group, with the assistance of independent investigator Blaine Alan Gibson, had decided to go to Madagascar, Mozambique and Tanzania out of frustration over the inaction of authorities to search for the jet in the area where the debris was found.

Gibson was instrumental in the discovery of debris and personal effects on the islands south of Africa.

Grace yesterday also posted that they had held a press conference in French and English, and had exhibited maps and pieces of debris to raise awareness about “where to look, what to look for, and how to handle any debris found”.

She said they would split into three groups and be travelling to Tamatave, Isle of St Marie and Nosy Be island to cover as much ground possible to search for debris.

“Please keep us in your thoughts. If you have any information or contacts in these areas we would be grateful if you could share them with us,” she said.

The flight, carrying 239 passengers and crew, disappeared on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014.

It sparked the world’s biggest international search in the southern Indian Ocean, covering more than 110,000 square kilometres. The search is ongoing but has been scaled down.

Also Read: MAS turnaround on documents stumps Aussie MH370 kin (7 Dec 2016)


Sunday 4 December 2016

MH370 Families’ Plea to Madagascar: Help Us Find Debris

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLuZ54s7N406ePcZyhwLkfrhMa9-IBn3ad

Relatives of some of the 239 passengers and crew on missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 arrived in Madagascar Saturday to ask for help in the search for debris from the missing aircraft that may have drifted across the Indian Ocean. Ahead of meetings with community leaders and a journey to coastal areas to talk to villagers about the plane, half a dozen relatives traveled to Antananarivo, Madagascar’s capital.

mh370-familiies-search-brochure

Instruction flyer about how to identify debris, how to collect debris and what to do with it when you find it. Download

The plane vanished in 2014, Grace Nathan, a Malaysian whose mother was on the flight said “We hope that we can raise awareness, teach them about how to identify debris, how to collect debris, what to do with it when they find it.”

They have created Maps showing high debris concentration areas in Madagascar, Mozambique and Tanzania where MH370 debris may wash up on the shore line and also included brochures detailing guidelines for those who find potential MH370.
The pdf file can be downloaded here
An Updated (5 Dec 2016) zip file including a google earth kml here 

Seven Next-of-Kin (NOKs) of passengers on board the Missing Flight MH370 will travel to Madagascar from the 03 Dec 16 to 11 Dec 16.

cy4wa7qviaqwboAll debris collected to date have been found off the East Coast of Africa by the public. Despite these hugely important finds, there has been no systematic, organised search by any responsible party. This leaves the NOKs no other choice except to take it upon themselves to do something in their quest to find answers and closure.

The NOKs would like to invite the local and international media to a Press Conference in Antananarivo:

Date: 05 Dec 2016
Time: 14.00 (2.00 pm)
Venue: Café de la Gare (Soarano)
Arabe Rainibertsimisaraka,
Antananarivo 00101, Madagascar

The purpose of the press conference is to highlight the purpose of our trip, which is to

1. raise awareness about the still missing plane
2. mobilise the local coastal populations to be on the lookout for potential debris;
3. set up possible collection points;
4. establish a possible incentive system for debris recovered;
5. meet with service organizations and community-based groups, to facilitate help in continuing the search, and
6. search for debris ourselves.

English version | French version

https://twitter.com/cryfortruth/status/805386925129498624


Sunday 4 December 2016

https://twitter.com/AirInvestigate/status/805220121539215360

Another document from the confidential Royal Malaysian Police (RMP) investigation into the disappearance of MH370, was released by Mick Rooney, @Airinvestigate on Twitter.
These are said to be part of the 1,000-page Royal Malaysian Police investigation report that was leaked.

After already releasing documents of the RMP report on 12, 14 and 24 November, Mick Rooney has released another document of the report on 4 December 2016;

Folder 5 Aircraft Records and Radar .pdf (74 pages)
This 74 pages document suggests a DVD-R exists with the raw radar data

On 12 November 2016 Mick Roony posted a part of the leaked RMP report that confirms that MH370 FO’s cell phone was briefly detected south of Penang on 8th March, 2014 at 1:52am (MYT) and a Summary conclusion of FO phone & test analysis (with parts clipped & redacted).

On 14 November he posted the RMP Report documents;

  1. Data from Flight Simulator Computer.pdf 658 kB (14 pages)
    This 14-page document includes technical information about the data found on Captain Zaharie Shah’s flight simulator hard drives. It appears that the machine crashed multiple times in the months before MH370’s disappearance. The document also includes a log of when the flight sim was played, the last time being on March 15, 2014, a week after the plane disappeared (presumably this reflects activity by investigators.) Prior to that, the sim had last been played on February 20, two weeks before the disappearance.
    .
  2. Data from Prelim Exam Report (Translated from Malay).pdf 374.12 kB (7 pages)
    This 7-page document seems to have been machine-translated from Malay, and appears to describe a preliminary investigation of the computer hard drives by a Malaysian police technician. It lists the various hard drives found with the flight-sim computer. Among the information recovered were passwords and account information for Captain Zaharie Shah’s hobbies and interests, as well as information about an online bookstore, his various social media accounts, and online shopping. After a section discussing the seven deleted points from the flight simulator,  the report concludes with a brief Summary: “The results of the examination of the goods were found that no any activity outside the common. The overall computer use to host gaming Flight Simulator only. Nor has any information source which directly indicates there any plans to eliminate MH370 found.”
    .
  3. Sim Data.pdf 12.55 MB (31 pages)
    This 31-page document appears to contain all of the saved data in the seven above-mentioned flight simulator points.

And on 24 November 2016 he posted;

MH370 ATC Audio Analysis and Other Records (Inmarsat).pdf  (82 pages)
This 82-page document contains an expert report analyzing the cockpit/ATC audio up to 17:21, which concludes (with less than 100% confidence) that it was probably Zaharie who uttered the final words “Good night, Malaysia 370.” It also includes ACARS data and the Inmarsat logs which had already been released in 2014.

 


Friday 2 December 2016: Day 1000

Today marks 1000 days since Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 went missing with 239 souls on board 

mh370-1000-days-missing

https://twitter.com/cryfortruth/status/803967837941465088

https://twitter.com/Jannilixious/status/804669696826081281

https://twitter.com/cryfortruth/status/805636611413278720


Wednesday 30 November 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  = MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/803827519677939712

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is continuing underwater search operations in the north of the 120,000 square-kilometre search area using the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV). As of today, Fugro Equator has undertaken a total of 21 missions this swing. 5 AUV missions were successfully completed this week, with an average duration of 25 ½ hours.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is continuing underwater search operations using the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) in the south of the search area with some operations affected by unsuitable weather conditions. Dong Hai Jiu 101 has conducted a total of 24 ROV dives during the swing.

Underwater search imagery

The underwater search continues with an AUV searching areas of challenging terrain and an ROV examining a range of sonar contacts which have been previously identified. Over the past week, ROV missions have revealed those contacts to be geological or man-made objects. Dive 17 identified a contact cluster as geological comprising basaltic rock outcrops on a slope. Some outcrops were 5m in length and 0.75 m high. Dive 19 video footage identified a single contact as a discarded standard 200 litre oil barrel.

Figure 1: HH0029 contact from side scan sonar data selected for reacquisition
Figure 1: HH0029 contact from side scan sonar data selected for reacquisition
Source: ATSB

Figure 2: A scattered rock outcrop identified during Dive 17 contact reacquisition HH0029 by the ROV on 23 November 2016

Figure 2: A scattered rock outcrop identified during Dive 17 contact reacquisition HH0029 by the ROV on 23 Nov 2016. Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Figure 3: A screen grab from the video monitor on board DHJ101 of a 200 litre oil barrel seen by the ROV during Dive 19 contact reacquisition FE0005 on 26 November 2016

Figure 3: A screen grab from the video monitor on board DHJ101 of a 200 litre oil barrel seen by the ROV during Dive 19 contact reacquisition FE0005 on 26 Nov 2016. Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Figure 4: Cable debris identified during Dive 18 contact reacquisition FE0090

Figure 4: Cable debris identified during Dive 18 contact reacquisition FE0090. Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

Weather

Weather conditions are suitable for AUV and mostly suitable for ROV operations during the upcoming week. Weather is not expected to impact operations on Dong Hai Jiu 101 or Fugro Equator for any extended period.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Thursday 24 November 2016

https://twitter.com/AirInvestigate/status/801553355449442304

Some documents from the confidential Royal Malaysian Police (RMP) investigation into the disappearance of MH370, were released by Mick Rooney, @Airinvestigate on Twitter.
These are said to be part of the 1,000-page Royal Malaysian Police investigation report that was leaked.

After already having releasing documents of the RMP report on 12 and 14 November, Mick Rooney has released another document of the report on Thursday 24 November;

MH370 ATC Audio Analysis and Other Records (Inmarsat).pdf  (82 pages)
This 82-page document contains an expert report analyzing the cockpit/ATC audio up to 17:21, which concludes (with less than 100% confidence) that it was probably Zaharie who uttered the final words “Good night, Malaysia 370.” It also includes ACARS data and the Inmarsat logs which had already been released in 2014.

On 12 November 2016 Mick Roony posted a part of the leaked RMP report that confirms that MH370 FO’s cell phone was briefly detected south of Penang on 8th March, 2014 at 1:52am (MYT) and a Summary conclusion of FO phone & test analysis (with parts clipped & redacted).

On 14 November he posted the RMP Report documents;

  1. Data from Flight Simulator Computer.pdf 658 kB (14 pages)
    This 14-page document includes technical information about the data found on Captain Zaharie Shah’s flight simulator hard drives. It appears that the machine crashed multiple times in the months before MH370’s disappearance. The document also includes a log of when the flight sim was played, the last time being on March 15, 2014, a week after the plane disappeared (presumably this reflects activity by investigators.) Prior to that, the sim had last been played on February 20, two weeks before the disappearance.
    .
  2. Data from Prelim Exam Report (Translated from Malay).pdf 374.12 kB (7 pages)
    This 7-page document seems to have been machine-translated from Malay, and appears to describe a preliminary investigation of the computer hard drives by a Malaysian police technician. It lists the various hard drives found with the flight-sim computer. Among the information recovered were passwords and account information for Captain Zaharie Shah’s hobbies and interests, as well as information about an online bookstore, his various social media accounts, and online shopping. After a section discussing the seven deleted points from the flight simulator,  the report concludes with a brief Summary: “The results of the examination of the goods were found that no any activity outside the common. The overall computer use to host gaming Flight Simulator only. Nor has any information source which directly indicates there any plans to eliminate MH370 found.”
    .
  3. Sim Data.pdf 12.55 MB (31 pages)
    This 31-page document appears to contain all of the saved data in the seven above-mentioned flight simulator points.

Wednesday 23 November 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/801277328391163904

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is continuing underwater search operations in the north of the 120,000 square-kilometre search area using the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV). As of today, Fugro Equator has undertaken a total of 16 missions this swing. Three AUV missions were successfully completed this week, with an average duration of 27 hours.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is continuing underwater search operations using the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) in the south of the search area but operations have been affected by unsuitable weather conditions. Dong Hai Jiu 101 has conducted a total of 13  ROV dives during the swing. Two dives were completed by Dong Hai Jiu 101 in the past week with one sonar contact identified as geology. Dive 13 identified a sonar contact as a debris field from a nearby shipwreck (Shipwreck #2). Dive 14 is currently underway.

Underwater search imagery

The underwater search continues with an AUV searching areas of challenging terrain and an ROV examining a range of sonar contacts which have been previously identified. The first figure below shows the original sonar data featuring a contact (designated HH0009a) detected earlier in the search. The second image is a frame grab of video taken by the ROV on the seafloor. The contact was confirmed as being manmade and is almost certainly debris from a nearby shipwreck.

These images show the complexity of imagery of the search and the difference in sonar and visual interpretations of contacts.

Figure 1: HH0009A Contact cluster on original sonar record
Figure 1: HH0009A Contact cluster on original sonar record. Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Figure 2: ROV video frame grab from dive 13 showing metal box debris almost certainly from the shipwreck 700 m to the west

Figure 2: ROV video frame grab from dive 13 showing metal box debris almost certainly from the shipwreck 700 m to the west. Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on
22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

Weather

Weather conditions are suitable for AUV and marginally suitable for ROV operations during the week and are expected to impact ROV operations on Dong Hai Jiu 101 but not on Fugro Equator.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Wednesday 16 November 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/798739662537834496

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is continuing underwater search operations in the north of the search area using the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV). During the past week, Fugro Equator has undertaken 5 missions, each one taking, on average, 21 hours.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is continuing underwater search operations using the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) in the middle of the search area but operations have been affected by unsuitable weather conditions. Two contact reacquisitions have been undertaken during the past week with both being identified as geological features (pictures below):

Figure 1: Frame grab from ROV camera showing basalt outcrop from contact reacquisition during Dive 10

figure-1-frame-grab-from-rov-camera-showing-basalt-outcrop-from-contact-reacquisition-during-dive-10

Figure 1: Frame grab from ROV camera showing basalt outcrop from contact reacquisition during Dive 10. Source: ATSB

Figure 2: ROV video frame grab from contact reacquisition on Dive 11 showing densely spaced angular rocks (corresponding to bright return on deep-tow side scan sonar)

figure-2-rov-video-frame-grab-from-contact-reacquisition-on-dive-11-showing-densely-spaced-angular-rocks-corresponding-to-bright-return-on-deep-tow-side-scan-sonar

Figure 2: ROV video frame grab from contact reacquisition on Dive 11 showing densely spaced angular rocks (corresponding to bright return on deep-tow side scan sonar). Source: ATSB

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be unsuitable for both AUV and ROV operations periodically during the week and are expected to impact the progress of the search operations to some extent.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Monday 14 November 2016

RMP Sim Data & Analysis 

Some documents from the confidential Royal Malaysian Police (RMP) investigation into the disappearance of MH370, were released by Mick Rooney, @Airinvestigate on Twitter.
These are part of the 1,000-page Royal Malaysian Police investigation report that was leaked.

https://twitter.com/AirInvestigate/status/797983693172142080

  1. Data from Flight Simulator Computer.pdf 658 kB (14 pages)
    This 14-page document includes technical information about the data found on Captain Zaharie Shah’s flight simulator hard drives. It appears that the machine crashed multiple times in the months before MH370’s disappearance. The document also includes a log of when the flight sim was played, the last time being on March 15, 2014, a week after the plane disappeared (presumably this reflects activity by investigators.) Prior to that, the sim had last been played on February 20, two weeks before the disappearance.
    .
  2. Data from Prelim Exam Report (Translated from Malay).pdf 374.12 kB (7 pages)
    This 7-page document seems to have been machine-translated from Malay, and appears to describe a preliminary investigation of the computer hard drives by a Malaysian police technician. It lists the various hard drives found with the flight-sim computer. Among the information recovered were passwords and account information for Captain Zaharie Shah’s hobbies and interests, as well as information about an online bookstore, his various social media accounts, and online shopping. After a section discussing the seven deleted points from the flight simulator,  the report concludes with a brief Summary: “The results of the examination of the goods were found that no any activity outside the common. The overall computer use to host gaming Flight Simulator only. Nor has any information source which directly indicates there any plans to eliminate MH370 found.”
    .
  3. Sim Data.pdf 12.55 MB (31 pages)
    This 31-page document appears to contain all of the saved data in the seven above-mentioned flight simulator points.

On 12 November 2016 Mick Rooney, @Airinvestigate on Twitter, released two pages of  the 1,000-page Royal Malaysian Police investigation report which confirm that the co pilot’s cell phone was briefly detected south of Penang on 8th March, 2014 at 1:52am (MYT).
Followed by a summary conclusion of the co pilot’s phone & test analysis (Some parts are clipped & redacted).

https://twitter.com/AirInvestigate/status/797248271475503104

https://twitter.com/AirInvestigate/status/797460659671863296


Wednesday 09 November 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/796203908200697856

Key developments this week

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

First Principles Review Meeting

A First Principles Review meeting was hosted by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau in Canberra on 2-4 November 2016. The meeting brought together the Search Strategy Working Group and other Australian and international experts and advisors along with representatives from Malaysia (including officers of the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation) and the People’s Republic of China. The purpose of the meeting was to review the results of the search undertaken to date and all of the available data, associated analysis, assumptions and modelling which have informed the definition of the search area and which may also assist operations in the remainder of the search effort.

The development of a report detailing the outcomes of the First Principles Review meeting is currently underway and will be published by the ATSB in the coming months.

Weather

Weather conditions are predicted to be reasonable throughout the week and are not expected to adversely impact the progress of the search operatio.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Thursday 03 November 2016

ATSB – Correcting the Record:

Misleading media reporting on the First Principles Review into the search for MH370

3 November 2016

3nov2016-atsb-correcting-the-record

ATSB Correcting the Record 3 Nov 2016

It has been reported by the ABC and news.com.au that the purpose of the First Principles Review meeting in Canberra on 2-4 November 2016 is for the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) to seek additional funding from the Australian Government to extend the search for MH370.

This is not correct.

The First Principles review meeting consists of experts from the Search Strategy Working Group including Australian Defence Scientists, Boeing, Thales, Inmarsat, the National Transportation Safety Board of the US and the Air Accident Investigation Branch of the UK along with experts from CSIRO, Geoscience Australia and Curtin University, and with representatives for Malaysia (including officers of the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation) and the People’s Republic of China. They are reviewing all the available data and associated analysis, assumptions and modelling undertaken to inform the definition of the search area. The review will inform the remainder of the current search effort, and if needed, develop guidance for any future search operations.

Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China, agreed at the Tripartite meeting in July 2016 that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would not end, but be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

It has also been suggested by the ABC that “Australia is understood to be using the meeting to put together the best scientific thinking, along with a sound and reasonable business plan that will make it impossible for Malaysia and China to back away from.” This is not correct. This is not the purpose of the meeting and the agenda is not to expand the search area.

Representatives from both the Government of Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China are present at the three-day meeting, and Australia continues to work closely with Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China on the search for MH370. In accordance with the Tripartite arrangement, Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China continue to take decisions together regarding the search.

For the First Principles Review, the ATSB has assembled experts from around the world to reassess the data available. A report detailing the findings of the First Principle Review will be made available following the meeting.

Source: ATSB


Wednesday 02 November 2016

Press Conference — MH370

INTERVIEW
DCI011/2016 – 02 November 2016

Subjects: Progress report on the search for MH370

Darren Chester: Thank you, but also thank you on behalf of the Australian Government for the work that’s been undertaken. In many ways, the search for MH370 has been both historic and heroic and our thoughts are always with the loved ones of the 239 passenger and crew on board who have been missing since March 2014. Australia’s role since April 2014, though, has been leading the underwater search in some of the most inhospitable waters in the world. Keep in mind we are talking about a search here which is located 2600 kilometres off the coast of Western Australia. We’re talking about a search area in many cases up to 6 kilometres deep, in terms of the water, and we see conditions which have been extreme on many, many occasions these past two years.

Australia has been working closely with the governments of Malaysia and China in the search for MH370. The three countries have had an agreement to take all significant decisions regarding the search on a tripartite manner. Our current search efforts continue to be focused on what is known as the Seventh Arc in the Southern Indian Ocean which is associated with the final handshake between the aircraft and the satellite ground station. There are two vessels currently deployed by the search effort, there is more than 110,000 square kilometres which has been searched so far. We have remotely operated autonomous underwater vehicles which have been used to further examine contact points which have been identified by the sonar towfish operations.

The operations, as I indicated, 120,000 square kilometre high probability search area, have been hampered on many occasions by extremely poor weather and particularly of recent times. In fact, later this week, there are forecasts of sea conditions of seven to nine metres and this is by any summation a challenging environment. The searching of the entire area, the 120,000 kilometre high probability search area, is expected to be completed early in 2017, which I acknowledge is later than has been anticipated which has been due primarily to the inclement weather. And I remind everyone that following the meeting in July this year in Malaysia where the Ministers from Malaysia, Australia, and the People’s Republic of China gathered on the 22nd of July it was decided that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended on completion of that 120,000 square kilometre search area.

I’d like to acknowledge again the efforts of the crews who are on station west of Western Australia. Can I say every effort has been made at this stage to locate the aircraft and we remain as hopeful as ever that the aircraft will be found in the remaining months of this search. Should this not occur, the entire highest probability search area which has been identified by expert analysis will have been covered. This week, we have here in Canberra ATSB experts joined by a team of international experts to undertake what we call a ‘first principles review’ to reassess the evidence and the information which is currently available to us and I want to thank the international team for their efforts and their involvement to this stage.

Shortly, I’ll hand over to Greg Hood to comment on the findings of the report and activities planned for this week. Let me simply conclude by saying the search for MH370 is ongoing and we have a team of experts who are analysing all the available information. In the absence of finding the aircraft, there will always be speculation and there’ll always be theories, but I’m not going to second guess the experts. I would like to thank Greg Hood and Pete Foley and the entire team for the work they’ve done, the work they’ve undertaken on behalf of the Australian people and on behalf of the families of the MH370 victims.

Greg Hood: Thanks Minister and thanks to members of my team at the ATSB and also the international and Australian experts that are gathered for the next three days. So, today the ATSB has released this report. It’s entitled MH370 Search and Debris Examination Update.There are four elements to this report. One is the analysis of the satellite exchanges between the aircraft and the satellite at the last point of contact, which indicates a steep and increasing rate of descent. The second point is some end of flight simulations conducted by the aircraft manufacturer. The third is what is maturing drift modelling, largely effected by CSIRO. And finally, an analysis of the right outboard main wing flap of Nine Mike Mike Romeo Oscar, the airframe operating as Malaysian 370. So, I’d like to once again thank the ATSB team and those international folk that are gathered here for the next three days to conduct a further review of where we’re at with the scientific analysis.

Darren Chester: Well, ladies and gentlemen, we’re available to answer any questions.

Question: Minister, how long to do you anticipate this first principles review will take to complete?

Darren Chester: Well, the team’s going to be here in Canberra for the rest of the week, so we’re talking about a three-day process and that will conclude by the end of this week.

Question: What do you hope to get out of it?

Darren Chester: Well, it’s an opportunity to gather the experts from around the world to look at the available information, to exchange ideas. It’s an opportunity for a full assessment of how the underwater search has been carried out, and a reassessment of the information from this process will be made publicly available at the conclusion—once there has been time to evaluate the discussions.

Question: Will there be a new search come out of it? It seems pointless to have a reassessment if the search is drawing to a close.

Darren Chester: Well I disagree. There is nothing pointless about what I said was quite an historic and heroic effort to search for MH370. We do owe it to the families involved of the passengers and crew to do the best we possibly can. We are doing the best we possibly can, and we assembled experts from around the world to reassess the data that’s available to us and then make our decisions.

Look, into the future I must emphasise that decisions made in relation to the search area are not those for Australia alone. As I indicated, it’s a tripartite agreement. We work in partnership with the Malaysian and Chinese governments on these issues. Quite rightly, we will continue to explore every bit of information that’s available, and allow the experts from the ATSB in Australia, also the international experience, to inform our efforts.

Question: Are you ruling out a new search?

Darren Chester: All I’m providing for you today is an update on what’s occurred thus far, and the plan for the next three days in terms of the first principles review. It’s not my role as a Minister to second-guess the experts. What we’re saying is there was an agreement reached in July this year between the three nations involved to focus on and complete a 120,000 square kilometre search area, and in the absence of any further credible evidence leading to any specific location, the search would be suspended at that time. So that is the process we’ve undertaken.

Question: Darren, you said that they’re quite confident that they should be able to find something in the current search area. How likely is that?

Darren Chester: Well, those aren’t words I’ve used in terms of confidence, or levels of confidence. We’ve remained hopeful throughout the whole process that we are searching the right area, and the report released today confirms we are searching in the right area. But in the absence of finding the aircraft, obviously it leaves room for further speculation and theories, but I simply won’t second-guess the experts.

The information provided to us is that we are searching in the right area, but the degree of difficulty is something we all need to understand. We are talking about a search area which is 2,600 kilometres off the coast of Western Australia; we’re talking about searching sections of the ocean which are four to six kilometres deep, with canyons and ravines. It is an extremely difficult and complex search. It has tested the limits of human engineering excellence and technical capacity, and it has been an historic effort.

To have not found the aircraft at this stage is frustrating for everyone involved, and particularly for the families of the passengers and crew, but we’re continuing to work through the final 10,000 square kilometres of the 120,000 square kilometre high priority area, and we look forward to the discussion this week in terms of gathering experts from around the world to allow them to exchange their ideas, to re-examine the evidence that’s available to us. And I think everyone involved is trying to keep hopeful and keep their spirits up about the prospects of locating MH370.

Question: Minister, could you actually give us an idea—you’ve mentioned that this is 6 kilometres deep in places, the canyons and ravines, very tough underwater terrain. What are the chances the aircraft could’ve slithered into some sort of underwater gully?

Darren Chester: Look, it’s probably best if I defer to Peter now, in terms of the technical details in that regard. You’ve painted a very accurate picture of the challenging circumstances. If we were to imagine this 120,000 square kilometre search area and imagine it was on land, you’re talking about a section of terrain from Melbourne to Sydney along the Great Dividing Range, except the depths are deeper than the Dividing Range is high. It is an extraordinarily challenging search area, but I’ll refer you to Peter, if you like, in terms of some of the technical aspects.

Peter Foley: It’s a good question, Brendan, and essentially why we’re conducting the reacquisition of a number of sonar contacts with a remotely operated vehicle is to eliminate them. We’ve also got an AUV out there that covers some of the more challenging terrain, and it’s a process of improving our confidence that we haven’t missed it within the current search area.

Question: One of the aspects of this whole search that is quite extraordinary is the tiny amount of evidence you’re actually working with. Now, you are–Defence, scientists and others–have helped you mine tiny signals that have come from this aircraft, or have been sent to this aircraft, responses to signals or whatever. This has been criticised by some as being too slender a body of evidence for you to rely on. Now, I understand that’s all that you’ve got, but you do have an expert panel advising you–I gather some of those members are here. Is the feeling among the experts that you have advising you supportive of the conclusions you’ve reached so far?

Peter Foley: I must say, ATSB convene and coordinate the search strategy work as a whole, it’s contributed to by a range of expert individuals, we’ve commissioned additional work, drift modelling is a good example of that where we’ve commissioned an expert to do our drift modelling as well once we started to see debris turn up around the coastlines of Africa. So you know, in essence we’re not just reliant on the very scant satellite data, it’s a key piece of the puzzle but we’re also informed by anything that we can be informed by in addition to that. At this point it is probably debris which has enhanced our knowledge of certainly what happened at the end of flight, with the analysis of that section of main flap and indeed what we are doing with drift modelling, and currently in the process of, which is outlined briefly in the report there.

Question: Can you explain a little more about the flap, whether it was extended or not and what that actually means in terms of whether anyone was in control of the aircraft?

Peter Foley: What we’ve concluded from the analysis of that section of right main flap is that it was probably in a non-extended position which means that the aircraft wasn’t configured for a landing or a ditching. You can draw your own conclusions as to whether that means someone was in control or not but taken together with the analysis of those last two burst frequency offsets, which indicate a high and increasing rate of descent, it means that we’re looking for an aircraft that’s actually quite close to the seventh arc.

Question: When we last spoke you mentioning the doubt about the evidence of the flap, what would it point to, I’m just wondering how confident you are as it’s the mother of all conspiracy theories around some of these things. I mean how much solidity is there in kind of what you found? Is it sort of possible to definitively say you’ve got enough here to rule out some of those odd theories going around?

Peter Foley: The words in the report are most likely and that’s the state that we indicate the flap was in, it was most likely in a non-extended or housed position, so you can never be 100 per cent and we are very reluctant to express absolute certainty but that’s the most likely scenario.

Question: If the plane doesn’t turn up in this last 10,000 square kilometres that needs to be searched, would the search be seen as a failure or do you think it was always the case of a needle in a haystack? You’re probably not going to find it anyway?

Peter Foley: I don’t think in any way, shape or form spending two and a half years of extraordinary effort looking for the aircraft could be seen as a failure and I would hate to express that thought amongst my team and indeed all the experts who are in the room who’ve devoted an extraordinary amount of time to finding the solution to a puzzle. I mean every single one of us is motivated by the desire to find the aircraft for the families and indeed for aviation safety more broadly.

Question: What do you hope this re-examination of evidence will achieve?

Peter Foley: Robin, it’s really about going back to first principles and looking at all the evidence before us, any new analysis that we have before us and some of the analysis is emerging as Greg indicated, the drift analysis is evolving, I think also it’s a chance to look back and see if there’s anything else that we can possibly do to better our understanding, any additional work that can be done to better our understanding about what happened to that aircraft.

Question: And with this first principles review could we then see the search extended?

Peter Foley: That’s not a question for me, it’s a question for government, so I mean we will produce a report at the end of the day, from what the experts discuss, so over the next three days and then of course it’s up to the governments tripartite to make any decisions in relation to that.

Question: And what is a realistic timeline though with searching for the aircraft? Obviously there’s an end date at the moment, how long would you like to see that extended for?

Peter Foley: I have personal views, which I don’t care to share but I don’t think anyone, anyone who’s been involved in this search wants to walk away without finding that aircraft, that’s just human nature.

Question: Is this your last shot at maybe you know, finding that somewhere else?

Peter Foley: I don’t think there’s a last shot, I think we’re doing what’s a sensible approach at this point and that’s to review all the evidence we have and look at the analysis and see if there’s anything extra that can be done.

Source: minister.infrastructure.gov.au

https://youtu.be/DIjICTMKqUA


https://twitter.com/jessedorsett/status/793594646257471488

https://twitter.com/jessedorsett/status/793595713225568256


Wednesday 02 November 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/793679538324590592

MH370 – Search and debris examination update

Published: 2 November 2016

Executive summary

This report provides an update to the MH370 search area definition described in previous ATSB reports. It comprises further analysis of satellite data, additional end of flight simulations, a summary of the analysis of the right outboard wing flap, and preliminary results from the enhanced debris drift modelling.

For background information, please refer to the ATSB publications available online at www.atsb.gov.au/mh370:

  • Definition of underwater search areas, 18 August 2014
  • Flight Path Analysis Update, 8 October 2014
  • Definition of Underwater Search Area Update, 3 December 2015.

The Australian Defence Science and Technology (DST) Group (Formerly the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO)) conducted a comprehensive analysis of the Inmarsat satellite communications (SATCOM) data and a model of aircraft dynamics. The output of the DST Group analysis was a probability density function (PDF) defining the probable location of the aircraft’s crossing of the 7th arc.

Details of this analysis and the validation experiments are available in the open source published book here: http://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-981-10-0379-0.

Additional analysis of the burst frequency offsets associated with the final satellite communications to and from the aircraft is consistent with the aircraft being in a high and increasing rate of descent at that time. Additionally, the wing flap debris analysis reduced the likelihood of end-of-flight scenarios involving flap deployment.

Preliminary results of the CSIRO’s drift analysis indicated it was unlikely that debris originated from south of the current search area. The northernmost simulated regions were also found to be less likely. Drift analysis work is ongoing and is expected to refine these results.

Download search and debris update: [Download PDF: 2.68MB]


Wednesday 02 November 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/793679538324590592

Key developments this week

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on
22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

ATSB Report: MH370 – Search and debris examination update

Today the ATSB released the latest update report on the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: MH370 – Search and debris examination update. This report provides an update of the MH370 search area definition described in previous ATSB reports. It comprises further analysis of satellite data, additional end of flight simulations, a summary of the analysis of the right outboard wing flap, and preliminary results from the enhanced debris drift modelling.

Download search and debris update: [Download PDF: 2.68MB]

First Principles Review Meeting

The ATSB has convened a First Principles Review in Canberra from 2 – 4 November 2016. The Review brings together members of the Australian and international Search Strategy Working Group and other experts and advisors. They will review the results of the search undertaken to date and all of the available data, associated analysis, assumptions and modelling which have informed the definition of the search area. The Review may also assist operations in the remainder of the search effort. A report detailing the outcomes of the Review will be published by the ATSB in the coming months.

Weather

Weather conditions are predicted to be marginal changing to poor later in the week. These conditions may impact the progress of the search operations as the ROV requires frequent launching and recovery from the vessel – operations which call for suitable conditions.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Tuesday 01 November 2016

Plans to extend hunt for MH370, at potential cost of $30 million

1nov2016

Just when it seemed the search for missing Malaysia MH370 was drawing to a frustrating close with no result, PM can reveal that a plan is taking shape to extend the hunt.

The focus may shift north, to an area around the 34th parallel.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau reckons it needs another $30 million to mount the search.

It’ll host a three day ‘back to first principles’ meeting of experts in Canberra from tomorrow.

The aim is to shape a proposal for the Transport Minister to take to his Malaysian and Chinese counterparts.

Today, Malaysia Airlines also agreed to give lawyers for the victims access to a huge cache of potentially sensational company records – so far released only to the still secret Malaysian police report.

It includes maintenance log books of the Boeing 777, and medical and personnel records of the captain and co-pilot.

http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/news/audio/pm/201610/20161101-pm-fullprogram.mp3

Source: ABCnet.au | Peter Lloyd reported this story on Tuesday, November 1, 2016 18:10:00 

On Wednesday 2 November, ATSB’s Greg Hood is to give an interview to ABC PM programme on the  search progress.


Wednesday 26 October 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/791128528339234816

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator berthed at AMC Henderson on Friday 21 October, and commenced
    re-mobilisation of the Hugin 4500 Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) search system for its deployment in the search. The vessel departed the Australian Marine Complex at Henderson on 24 October, proceeding to the calibration range to test the performance of the AUV.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 departed Fremantle on Thursday 20 October and, after conducting trials of the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), proceeded to the search area. The vessel arrived in the search area on Monday 24 October and commenced search operations.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on
22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

Weather

Weather conditions are predicted to be marginal changing to poor later in the week. These conditions may impact the progress of the search operations as the ROV requires frequent launching and recovery – operations which call for suitable conditions.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Wednesday 19 October 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/788591666672402432

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator departed the search area on 15 October 2016. The vessel is travelling to AMC Henderson to commence re-mobilisation of the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) for its deployment in the search.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 remains berthed at Fremantle undertaking resupply operations and
    re-mobilising the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) for its deployment in the search. Further detail is provided below.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on
22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Due to poor weather conditions over the Southern hemisphere winter, it is expected searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around January/February 2017.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4

Click image to enlarge

 Weather

Weather conditions are predicted to be marginal changing to poor later in the week.  However, these conditions will not impact the search operations as no vessels will be in the search area this week.

Remotely Operated Vehicle Operations

Dong Hai Jiu 101 is currently alongside in Fremantle where Phoenix International Holding’s Remora III remotely operated vehicle (ROV) is being remobilized on the vessel. The ROV is equipped with a range of instruments including video cameras. The ROV will be tasked to reacquire and investigate, through video imaging, a range of sonar contacts which have been identified during previous deep tow operations.

None of the sonar contacts targeted for reacquisition exhibit the characteristics of a typical aircraft debris field and are therefore not classified as category 1 sonar contacts. However some exhibit man-made properties and therefore must be investigated further to be positively eliminated. Winter weather conditions have, until now, prevented the safe deployment of the ROV, but now sea states are improving. For further information on the classification of sonar contacts refer to the factsheet MH370: Sonar Contacts.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Friday 14 October 2016

Summary of possible MH370 Debris recovered

mh370-status-of-debris-14-oct-2016

MH370: Updated Status of Debris (14 October 2016) Image by Bookofresearch

On 14 October 2016 MH370 Official Site has released an update on the previous Summary of debris recovered that was released on 15 August 2016 by the Ministry of Transport (MOT) of Malaysia.

The updated version that was released today shows 22 pieces of debris of which three are confirmed as parts of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 and five parts as almost certain from MH370. Another part is deemed unidentifiable and the remaining thirteen pieces are still under evaluation.

The ATSB Examination Reports can be found here 

Debris Examination Report 1.pdf (19 April 2016) Identification of two items of debris recovered in Mozambique
Debris Examination Report 2.pdf (12 May 2016, Amended 24 May 2016) Identification of two items of debris recovered from the beaches in South Africa and Mauritius
Debris Examination Report 3.pdf (15 September 2016) Identification of large flap section recovered off the Tanzanian coast
Debris Examination Report 4.pdf (22 September 2016) Preliminary examination of two items of debris recovered near Sainte Luce, Madagascar)
Debris Examination Report 5.pdf (7 October 2016) Identification of wing trailing edge debris recovered from Mauritius


Wednesday 12 October 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/786054320710004736


Friday 7 October 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/784243581594632192

Debris Report 5 (7 October 2016)

Published: 7 October 2016

Debris examination – update No. 5

Identification of wing trailing edge debris recovered from Mauritius

Introduction

An item of composite debris was recovered on the island of Mauritius around 10 May 2016. The item profile was consistent with the trailing edge of an aircraft wing. The item was subsequently collected by a member of the Malayisan investigation team and hand-delivered to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau for identification.

This document is a brief summary of the item identification, designated part number 6. It follows the previous identification and examination reports available on this website. This summary is released with the concurrence of the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370.

Identification

Part No. 6

A part number was identified on a section of the debris, identifying it as a trailing edge splice strap, incorporated into the rear spar assembly of a Boeing 777 left outboard flap. This was consistent with the appearance and construction of the debris.

Adjacent to the part number was an “OL” part identifier, similar to those found on the right outboard flap section (Examination update 3). The flap manufacturer supplied records indicating that this identifier was a unique work order number and that the referred part was incorporated into the outboard flap shipset line number 404 which corresponded to the Boeing 777 aircraft line number 404, registered 9M-MRO and operating as MH370.

Figure 1: Left outboard flap trailing edge section showing part identification numbers

Left outboard flap trailing edge section showing part identification numbers
Source: ATSB

Conclusion

Part number 6 was a trailing edge section of Boeing 777 left, outboard flap, originating from the Malaysian Airlines aircraft registered 9M-MRO.

_____________

Download PDF of the Debris report 5 PDF

General details

General details
Date: 07 Mar 2014 Investigation status: Active
Time: 1722 UTC Investigation type: External Investigation
Location   (show map): Southern Indian Ocean Occurrence type: Missing aircraft
State: International Occurrence class: Technical
Release date: 24 May 2016 Occurrence category: Technical Analysis
Report status: Pending Highest injury level: Fatal
Expected completion: Jan 2017

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft model: 777-200ER
Aircraft registration: 9M-MRO
Operator: Malaysian Airlines
Type of operation: Air Transport High Capacity
Sector: Jet
Departure point: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Destination: Beijing, China

Press Statement By YB Transport Minister – Debris Recovered on Mauritius from MH370.pdf 

https://twitter.com/liowtionglai/status/784258761867169792

https://twitter.com/liowtionglai/status/784260670439104512


Wednesday 5 October 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/783527028960202752


Wednesday 28 September 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/781003990247043073

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is in the search area and conducting search operations.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is at anchor off Fremantle awaiting the onset of better weather in the search area when it will recommence search operations.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

It is expected that searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around December 2016.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Examination of suspected MH370 debris

On 22 September 2016 the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) issued a report following examination of two items of fibreglass-honeycomb composite debris provided by Mr Blaine Gibson.

Due to the absence of manufacturing identifiers such as part numbers or serial numbers it was not immediately apparent whether or not the debris was from a Boeing 777 aircraft.

Further work will be undertaken in an attempt to determine whether the items originated from a Boeing 777 aircraft

The full report, Debris examination – update No. 4: Preliminary examination of two items of debris recovered near Sainte Luce, Madagascar (22 September 2016), is available on the ATSB website.

Weather

Strong to gale force winds are expected in the search area over the coming days which may impact search operations.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Thursday 22 September 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/778810166422614017

Debris examination – update No. 4

Preliminary examination of two items of debris recovered near Sainte Luce, Madagascar

Introduction

Two items of fibreglass-honeycomb composite debris were recovered near Sainte Luce on the south-east coast of Madagascar, having reportedly washed ashore in February 2016. They were hand-delivered to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau on 12 September 2016. The items were initially reported in the media as being burnt.

This document summarises the ATSB’s preliminary examination of the items for any evidence of exposure to heat or fire.

Examination

No manufacturing identifiers, such as a part numbers or serial numbers were present on either item, that may have provided direct clues as to their origin. At the time of writing, the items had not been identified and work in this respect is ongoing.

A dark grey colouration was present on a significant proportion of both sides of each item (Figures 1, 2 and 3). Detailed examination of these areas showed that the colour related exclusively to a translucent resin that had been applied to those surfaces (Figure 4).

A cross section through the panel showed a clear delineation between the dark resin and the other surface coatings without any evidence of gradual transition. The lighter grey surface areas resulted from a thinner film of the same resin applied over an off-white background. Figure 5 shows the cross section directly and Figure 6 shows the same section at an oblique angle. This confirmed that the dark colour of the coating was an inherent property of the resin, and not the result of exposure to heat or fire.

Despite no evidence of overall gross heat damage, two small (<10mm) marks on one side of the larger item and one on the reverse side were identified as damage resulting from localised heating (Figures 2 and 3). A burnt odour emanating from the large item was isolated to these discrete areas. The origin and age of these marks was not apparent. However, it was considered that burning odours would generally dissipate after an extended period of environmental exposure, including salt water immersion, as expected for items originating from 9M-MRO.

Figure 1: Smaller composite panelSmaller composite panel
Source: ATSB

Figure 2: Larger composite panel showing discrete area of heat damageLarger composite panel showing discrete area of heat damage
Source: ATSB

Figure 3: Reverse side of larger composite panel showing discrete areas of heat damage
Reverse side of larger composite panel showing discrete areas of heat damage
Source: ATSB

Figure 4: Close-up of applied coatingsClose-up of applied coatings
Source: ATSB

Figure 5: Cross-section through composite skin, showing surface colouration through thicknessCross-section through composite skin, showing surface colouration through thickness
Source: ATSB

Figure 6: Higher magnification image of Figure 5, showing clear delineation between layersHigher magnification image of Figure 5, showing clear delineation between layers
Source: ATSB

Summary

The following findings were made during a preliminary examination of two items of composite debris, recovered near Sainte Luce, Madagascar. At the time of writing, work is ongoing to determine the origin of the items, specifically, whether they originated from a Boeing 777 aircraft.

  1. The dark grey colouration on the outer surfaces of the items related to an applied resin and was not the result of exposure to heat or fire.
  2. Three small marks on the larger item were indicative of localised heating. The age and origin of these marks was not apparent.

Download PDF of the Debris report 4

General details

General details
Date: 07 Mar 2014 Investigation status: Active
Time: 1722 UTC Investigation type: External Investigation
Location   (show map): Southern Indian Ocean Occurrence type: Missing aircraft
State: International Occurrence class: Technical
Release date: 24 May 2016 Occurrence category: Technical Analysis
Report status: Pending Highest injury level: Fatal
Expected completion: Nov 2016

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft model: 777-200ER
Aircraft registration: 9M-MRO
Operator: Malaysian Airlines
Type of operation: Air Transport High Capacity
Sector: Jet
Departure point: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Destination: Beijing, China

Thursday 22 September 2016

Examination of suspected MH370 debris

MEDIA RELEASE
DC123/2016
22 September 2016

22-sept-2016-examination-of-suspected-mh370-debris_-http___minister-infrastructure-gov-a

MEDIA RELEASE DC123/2016 – 22 September 2016

Debris recovered from near Sainte Luce on the south-east coast of Madagascar suspected to be from Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has not been able to be linked to the missing aircraft.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said Blaine Gibson had provided the two items of fibreglass-honeycomb composite debris to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) on 12 September 2016.

“With the agreement of the Government of Malaysia, the ATSB examined the items but found no manufacturing identifiers such as part numbers or serial numbers that provided clues as to the items’ origins,” Mr Chester said.

“At this stage it is not possible to determine whether the debris is from MH370 or indeed even a Boeing 777.

“What is known is that contrary to speculation there is no evidence the item was exposed to heat or fire.

“Further work will be undertaken in an attempt to determine the origin of the items, specifically whether they originated from a Boeing 777 aircraft.

“The search for MH370 is continuing and we remain hopeful the aircraft will be located.”

Ministers from Malaysia, the People’s Republic of China and Australia agreed at a tripartite meeting on 22 July 2016 that the search for MH370 will be suspended on completion of the 120,000 square kilometre high priority search area unless credible new evidence about the specific location of the aircraft emerges.

minister.infrastructure.gov.au


Wednesday 21 September 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/778459632641544193

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is in the search area and conducting search operations.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is at anchor off Fremantle awaiting the onset of better weather in the search area when it will recommence search operations.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

It is expected that searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around December 2016.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4
Click image to enlarge
 

Tanzanian wing flap confirmed as from MH370

Last week the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) released its report into the aircraft wing part found on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania.

Examination revealed the presence of unique identifying numbers relating to the part’s construction which allowed it to be determined as definitely coming from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. This is the second piece of debris – after the flaperon – to be conclusively linked to the aircraft.

While the debris affirms the focus of search efforts in the southern Indian Ocean, it does not, however, provide information that can be used to determine a specific location of the aircraft.

Debris Report 3 is available from AE-2014-054.

Weather

Weather conditions should allow search operations to continue.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Sunday 18 September 2016

MH370: Test Results On Four Pieces Of Debris To Be Known In 3 Months – Liow

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 (Bernama) — The test results on four pieces of debris that could belong to the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, Flight MH370, are expected to be known in less than three months.

mh370-confirmed-debris

Graphic with short summary of #MH370 confirmed and almost certain debris

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the pieces of debris were found along the coastal areas of South Africa, Mozambique, Mauritius and Tanzania.

“We believe that soon, we will know the test results…just like on the piece found in Tanzania, which took two and a half months to ascertain whether it belonged to the (missing) aircraft,” he told reporters after opening the 3 on 3 Basketball Competition at Wisma MCA, here, today.

Last Friday, Liow said 22 pieces of debris had so far been found along South Africa, Mozambique, Mauritius and Tanzania. Two were confirmed and four believed to almost certainly belong to the missing aircraft, while the rest were difficult to be identified as they have no serial numbers or other details on them.

Liow said the confirmed debris from MH370 were a flaperon found on Reunion Island in July, last year and a piece from the wing found on Pemba Island in Tanzanian waters in June, this year.


Friday 16 September 2016

MH370: debris found in Madagascar in June still not collected by Malaysia

Independent investigator Blaine Gibson says six pieces remain with island authorities and have not yet been analysed for links to missing aircraft.

debris-madagascar-still-not-collected-by-malaysia

Independent investigator Blaine Gibson with debris that he believes could have come from MH370 but has not yet been collected by Malaysian authorities. Photo:: Blaine Gibson

Debris thought to be from the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has been languishing in storage for months awaiting collection by Malaysian authorities, prompting questions about the ongoing search effort.

Blaine Gibson, the US independent investigator who has previously discovered debris confirmed to be from MH370, found several further pieces on beaches in Madagascar in June that that he believed to be from the missing plane.

He told the Guardian that he notified Australian and Malaysian authorities, but the items have not been picked up by Malaysia, which oversees the retrieval and analysis of evidence in the plane’s disappearance.

Six pieces of possible aircraft debris remain with authorities in Madagascar, awaiting collection, Gibson said, three months after he discovered them. There were also “possible personal effects” of the plane’s passengers, he added.

Gibson has been investigating the plane’s disappearance for more than a year and has found several pieces of debris on beaches bordering the Indian ocean. He delivered five separate finds to analysts at the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) in Canberra in person on Monday.

“I brought it myself this time because I was coming [to Australia] and because the Madagascar authorities have been waiting for three months for them to pick [the other pieces] up,” Gibson told Guardian Australia in Sydney.

The ATSB, which is coordinating the underwater search for the plane, said it was seeking advice from Malaysian authorities on how to proceed with the pieces.

Dato’ Sri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, the director-general of the Malaysian department of civil aviation, confirmed in a statement published in the Malay Mail this week that the authority had been notified of the debris found by Gibson in Madagascar.

He said his department was seeking help from the Malaysia high commissioner in Pretoria, South Africa, to retrieve the debris from the relevant authorities and courier it to Malaysia.

Malaysian investigators would then determine whether or not to send it to the ATSB for further analysis in Canberra.

The department also noted that it was “in constant touch with the relevant authorities … as more debris are coming on to land”.

It added: “We wish to urge all parties to allow the experts to conduct the verification processes.”

Guardian Australia’s requests for further clarification were responded to with the same statement.

Gibson was critical of the pace of the Malaysian authorities’ response, but acknowledged they had now pledged to act.

“I’ll believe that when I see that, but there is some reaction from Malaysia, there is some movement. So I don’t want to be too critical of them now if they’re fixing it.”

He had appealed to the Malaysian prime minister, Najib Razak, in a post to Facebook on 5 July: “I found some pieces of your plane about a month ago. Please send your people to come pick them up and investigate … and if they don’t, let’s request ATSB and ICAO [International Civil Aviation Organisation] to please do it.”

rid21-stab-evidence_03

Right Horizontal Stabiliser panel (No Step) confirmed as almost cetrain from MH370

Gibson has found several items of debris that have been linked by investigators to MH370, including a tail part that came to be known as the “No Step”, washed up in Mozambique in March. The ‘no step’ debris found by Blaine Gibson in Mozambique, later confirmed to be a horizontal stabiliser panel segment from the right-hand tail of MH370.

Six pieces of debris have so far been confirmed as MH370 wreckage.

The ATSB has previously analysed several pieces and concluded that four of them were “almost certainly” from the missing plane.

fig1_inboard-section-of-outboard-flap_debris3

Inboard section of outboard flap found off the coast of Kojani, Pemba Island, Tanzania

In addition, on Thursday it said a wing flap found on Pemba island, off the coast of Tanzania, in June “was confirmed as originating from the aircraft registered 9M-MRO and operating as MH370”.

stream_img

Flaperon found at Reunion Island on 29 July 2015.

A flaperon found on Réunion Island off the coast of Madagascar in July last year was the first piece to be formally identified as part of the plane wreckage.

Source: TheGuardian

https://twitter.com/Bookofresearch/status/777826298387394560


Thursday 15 September

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/776357361879351298

Published: 15 September 2016

Debris examination – update No. 3

Identification of large flap section recovered off the Tanzanian coast

Introduction

On 20 June 2016, a large item of debris was found on the island of Pemba, off the coast of Tanzania. Preliminary identification from photographs indicated that the item was likely a section of Boeing 777 outboard flap (Figure 1).

Assistance from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) was requested by the Malaysian Government in the formal identification of the item, to determine if the item came from the Malaysian Airlines Berhad (MAB) aircraft, registered 9M-MRO and operating as MH370. The Malaysian investigation team secured the item of debris and arranged shipping to the ATSB facilities in Canberra.

This document ( Update 3) is a brief summary of the outcomes from the identification of the item, designated as Part number 5. It follows the identification of Part numbers 1 through 4, the outcomes of which were released by the ATSB in Updates 1 and 2, available on the ATSB website.

This debris identification summary is released with the concurrence of the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370.

Identification

Part No. 5

Part number 5 was preliminarily identified from photographs as an inboard section of a Boeing 777 outboard flap. On arrival at the ATSB, several part numbers were immediately located on the debris that confirmed the preliminary identification. This was consistent with the physical appearance, dimensions and construction of the part.

A date stamp associated with one of the part numbers indicated manufacture on 23 January 2002 (Figure 2), which was consistent with the 31 May 2002 delivery date for 9M-MRO.

All of the identification stamps had a second “OL” number, in addition to the Boeing part number, that were unique identifiers relating to part construction. The Italian part manufacturer recovered build records for the numbers located on the part and confirmed that all of the numbers related to the same serial number outboard flap that was shipped to Boeing as line number 404. Aircraft line number 404 was delivered to Malaysian Airlines and registered as 9M-MRO.

Based on the above information, the part was confirmed as originating from the aircraft registered 9M-MRO and operating as MH370.

Figure 1: Inboard section of outboard flap (inverted) Inboard section of outboard flap (inverted). Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Figure 2: Exemplar part number and date stamp Figure 2: Exemplar part number and date stamp. Source: ATSB
Source: ATSB

Further analysis

At the time of writing, the flap section was being examined for any evidence of interaction with mechanisms, supports and surrounding components (such as the flaperon, which abuts the inboard end of the outboard flap) that may indicate the state of flap operation at the time of separation from the wing. This information may contribute to an increased understanding of end of flight scenarios.

Conclusions

It was confirmed that Part No. 5 was the inboard section of a Boeing 777 right, outboard flap, originating from the Malaysian Airlines aircraft registered 9M-MRO.

General details

General details
Date: 07 Mar 2014 Investigation status: Active
Time: 1722 UTC Investigation type: External Investigation
Location   (show map): Southern Indian Ocean Occurrence type: Missing aircraft
State: International Occurrence class: Technical
Release date: 24 May 2016 Occurrence category: Technical Analysis
Report status: Pending Highest injury level: Fatal
Expected completion: Nov 2016

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft model: 777-200ER
Aircraft registration: 9M-MRO
Operator: Malaysian Airlines
Type of operation: Air Transport High Capacity
Sector: Jet
Departure point: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Destination: Beijing, China


MEDIA STATEMENT BY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT LIOW TIONG LAI – 15 September 2016

csy1rdkusaauof1

MEDIA STATEMENT Minister of Transport Malaysia, Liow Tjong Lai, 15 September 2016

press-release-liow-15-sept-2016-p1

press-release-liow-15-sept-2016-p2


Thursday 15 September 2016

ATSB extends and retains the potential use of Fugro in the search for MH370 until August 2018.

Contract Notice View – CN2562511-A10

Also read:
Go north, MH370 guru Neil Gordon tells searchers – 15 September 2016 – The Australian
New MH370 search areas to be mapped with drift modelling – 14 Septeber 2016 – Spatialsource.com.au


Wednesday 14 September 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/775923059274330112

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator departed Fremantle on 8 September 2016 and is in transit to the search area.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is at port in Fremantle awaiting the onset of better weather in the search area when it will recommence search operations.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

It is expected that searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around December 2016.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Weather

Forecast fair weather should allow search operations to recommence when Fugro Equator arrives in the search area.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Tuesday 13 September 2016

PRESS STATEMENT
BY DATO’ SRI AZHARUDDIN ABDUL RAHMANAN,
DIRECTOR GENERAL, DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL AVIATION MALAYSIA

https://twitter.com/DCA_Malaysia/status/775644466392686596/photo/1

POSSIBLE MH370 DEBRIS

The Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia (DCA) has been officially notified by the Australian Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) of the debris found by Mr. Blaine Gibson in Madagascar recently. The debris was handed over to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) on September 12, 2016.

In our agreement with ATSB, any debris found will be analysed and examined in Canberra, Australia. It is crucial to note here that any debris found must be carefully examined and verified. At this juncture, it is too premature to certify the debris is indeed from MH370.

The DCA wishes to also note that we are in constant touch with the relevant authorities of South Africa, Mozambique and Madagascar as more debris are coming on to land.

Any possible debris found in these states will be made known to DCA by the respective authorities and will be kept in custody of the said authorities. Upon initial verification via photographic evidence, we will then either send a team to retrieve the debris or request the authorities to courier the debris to Malaysia.

Alternatively we will obtain the assistance of our nearest High Commissioner to retrieve the debris on behalf of the Government of Malaysia and subsequently courier the debris back to Malaysia.

The Malaysian team of experts will then determine the necessity to send it to ATSB for further examination and analysis.

The DCA is currently in the process of obtaining assistance from our High Commissioner in Pretoria, South Africa, to retrieve the debris from the relevant authorities of South Africa, Mozambique and Madagascar and subsequently courier the debris to Malaysia.

We wish to urge all parties to allow the experts to conduct the verification processes.

The next of kin of the loved ones of MH370 remains a priority and undue speculations will only add to their grief and pain.

We will make a necessary announcement on the outcome once the verification process has been completed.


Tuesday 13 September 2016

The following images and article are copyrighted and may not be reproduced or shared without the consent of the author Blaine Gibson.

By Blaine Gibson©  

Five additional probable MH370 debris found in Madagascar.

These include the first debris items from Southern Madagascar, and the first to show apparent signs of possible exposure to heat or fire.

1. Southeast Madagascar, near Saint Luce.Thanks go to Milson Tovontsoa, Rija Ravokatra, and Eodia Andriamahery, local Malagasy friends of mine who are helping search for debris.

image3

Debris piece that has burn/scorch marks to both sides, found at Sainte Luce, Madagascar. Photo: Blaine Gibson ©

Sainte Luce #1

Thin shattered composite panel with hexagonal honeycomb inside. 17″ x 10″, and 3/8 ” thick. Evidence of blackened singeing and burning of unknown origin on off white colored paint on panels on both sides. It is unclear if this occurred prior to the crash, or as a result of burning by local people in or near a fire afterwards. There is no evidence of burning or melting around the shattered edges, indicating the fire more likely occurred before the crash. This piece of debris was found about 7 km. north of Sainte Luce. Believed to have washed ashore in February 2016.

.

.

image17

Debris piece 2 found at Sainte Luce, Madagascar . Photo: Blaine Gibson ©

Sainte Luce # 2

Small tapered panel, painted silver on one side, shiny grey on the other, with non metallic hexagonal honeycomb in between. 11 1/2 ” x 8″ , and 3/4 ” thick. Found about 12 km. north of Sainte Luce in Bay of Etagotso. Believed to have washed ashore in December 2015.

.

3

Debris piece number 3 found at Sainte Luce, Madagascar. Photo by Blaine Gibson

Sainte Luce # 3

Small shattered composite panel with hexagonal honeycomb inside. 7 1/2″ x 2 3/4″, and 1/2 ” thick. Similar to Sainte Luce # 1, however # 3 is more solid, has one intact edge 4 ” long. Evidence of blackened singeing and burning of unknown origin on off white colored paint on panels on both sides. There is no evidence of burning or melting around the edges, indicating the fire more likely occurred before the crash. This piece of debris was found about 4 km. north of Sainte Luce. Believed to have washed ashore in February 2016.

Northeast Madagascar, Antsiraka and Riake Beaches

Antsiraka Beach # 4.

image24

The fourth piece found on Antsiraka Beach, Madagascar. Photo: Blaine Gibson ©

Probable interior cabin debris, fiberglass with hexagonal honeycomb inside. 11 1/2 ” by 7 3/4 “, and 3/4 ” thick. Has a natural curve as a wall or overhead bin would have that begins after 9″ of length. This is the fourth piece of aircraft debris from Antsiraka Beach.

image30

Piece number 6 from Riake Beach. Photo: Blaine Gibson ©

Riake Beach # 6.

Carbon fiber polymer panels with hexagonal non metallic honeycomb sandwiched in between. 11 ” x 21″, and 3/8 ” thick. Found by Blaine Gibson and Rija Ravokatra on Sept. 1, 2016 during the solar eclipse. One intact empty pin hole 1/2 ” in diameter. This is the sixth piece of probable 370 aircraft debris recovered from Riake Beach.

All five pieces were handed over to ATSB in Canberra for identification, investigation, and analysis.

This article and these images are  copyrighted and may not be reproduced or shared without the consent of the author Blaine Gibson.

https://twitter.com/h1ppyg1rl/status/775651948393590784


Monday 12 September 2016

Supposed MH370 debris brought to Australia

Canberra: A piece of plane debris with scorch marks, which is thought to be from the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, has arrived in Australia for examination, authorities said on Monday.


Amateur investigator Blaine Gibson, who has found 13 of the 27 pieces of debris from the missing Boeing 777 jet, arrived in Canberra on Monday with the pieces which he believes could be the most significant find in the search for the missing airliner, Xinhua news agency reported.

The most significant finding, according to Mr Gibson, is of the two alleged burnt pieces, recovered near Sainte Luce, in south-eastern Madagascar.

It is unclear, however, if the apparent burn marks were caused by fire prior to the crash or as a result of burning afterwards, he said

Mr Gibson said the scorch marks could represent a fire in the cargo bay, but also admitted it could be the result of the huge force of impact.

 “The top layer of paint has been singed, scorched black,” Mr Gibson said.

“(It`s significant) because it appears to be from the interior of the plane but not the main cabin, perhaps the cargo hold, perhaps the avionics bay.”

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is expected to examine the piece of debris in Canberra, and should it determine the piece is from the missing plane, it could prove to be pivotal in the investigation as it is the first piece to indicate the possibility of a fire on board.

However, despite the fact that Gibson brought the debris to Canberra, the ATSB was seeking clarification from colleagues in Malaysia before they examined the piece.

The spokesperson said Malaysian authorities were leading the investigation and are “responsible for the analysis” of all potential pieces of the plane.

Sources: zeenews.india.com , TheStar.com.my, BBC.com, News.com.auNews.com.au

Watch: Interview with Blaine Gibson (Video)


Sunday 11 September 2016

Suspected significant new piece of debris found by debris humter Blaine Gibson

Debris hunter Blaine Gibson has recovered from Madagascar what may be the most significant piece of wreckage yet that could tell investigators what happened on board to cause the loss of 239 lives on March 8, 2014.

The new pieces, to be given to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau in Canberra, are non-structural and appear to be sections of an internal wall panel which has been burnt, quite likely by a flash fire.

They bear a remarkable resemblance to some of the the panelling used in the Boeing 777 Avionics Bay which is located below and behind the cockpit under the main cabin floor.

The pieces were found by Milson Tovontsoa, Rija Ravolatra, and Eodia Andriamahery from the town of Saint Luce on the south east coast of Madagascar. Mr Gibson told AirlineRatings.com that he was immediately struck by the significance of the pieces which showed scorch marks and had obviously been exposed to heat.

However, he cautioned that the experts at the ATSB needed “to forensically examine the pieces to determine where they came from and what happened to them” before any conclusions could be drawn. Mr Gibson who has found 13 pieces of confirmed or suspected debris from MH370 has become the focus of picking up wreckage.

So far 27 pieces have been recovered. Mr Gibson now has an army of followers in a host of west Indian Ocean locations scouring beaches looking for debris. The new find gives investigators and searchers other scenarios for the loss of MH370.

The most widely held theory has been that the captain took control of the Boeing 777 and flew it to the southern Indian Ocean.

However, these new pieces raise other possibilities including cascading failures after a flash fire. But Mr Gibson says that the burn marks may have been from when the aircraft crashed into the Indian Ocean.

“The sea is slowly giving up her secrets. “I believe these pieces are extremely important.” Rather than give up the new pieces to the Madagascar authorities, as he has done before, Mr Gibson has brought them to Australia to hand them over directly to the ATSB.

“Malaysia is yet to pick up five pieces I found there three months ago,” said Mr Blaine. One of those pieces is a frame for a seat back monitor from a Boeing 777 which would indicate that the plane was involved in a catastrophic impact with the ocean.

Source: Airlineratings.com

https://twitter.com/7NewsPerth/status/774912132055838720


Wednesday 7 September 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/773386254406778881

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator arrived in Fremantle this morning this morning for a scheduled port visit and resupply. The vessel is expected to depart for the search area on 8 September 2016.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is conducting trials off Fremantle. Pending the onset of better weather in the search area, the vessel will undertake routine training and maintenance.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

It is expected that searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around December 2016.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Search methods and strategy

The methods and process by which the search is being conducted continue unchanged. Different conditions – both under and above the water – call for different approaches. This fact has always been acknowledged and allowed for in the planning of the search.

The towfish (vehicles equipped with side scan sonar or synthetic aperture sonar, and multibeam echo sounders) are ideal for searching large swathes of the seafloor in a single pass. The towfish are towed behind the vessels on very long cables and, while they require reasonable conditions to safely launch, once they are in the water they can remain deployed for days at a time.

The sonar data is fed directly to the vessels where it is reviewed and analysed for signs of the aircraft. To ensure nothing of interest is overlooked, the data is subsequently examined by analysts in the Fugro office in Perth and by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) in Canberra. A final independent analysis of the data is then conducted by experts in the United States of America.

Areas of the seafloor that are difficult to search using the towfish, for example areas with irregular terrain, are marked, as are sonar contacts of potential interest. These areas are searched using different equipment. You can find the factsheet MH370: Sonar Contacts on the ATSB website.

An Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) is highly manoeuvrable and is used to search areas where the geology of the ocean floor is difficult for effective deep tow operations. The sonar contacts of interest are also further investigated using either a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) or the AUV.

The ROV and AUV deployed from the search vessels must be recovered at the end of each mission. Safe launching and recovery of these vehicles require relatively calm sea conditions. The winter weather has prevented the safe use of this equipment and accordingly some small areas within the search area will not be fully searched until the advent of better weather in the coming months. This approach has always been part of the overall search strategy and operational planning.

The Governments of Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China remain committed to searching the entire 120,000-square kilometre search area thoroughly. Our efforts to date have been careful and comprehensive and we have no reason to think the MH370 wreckage could have been overlooked. That we have found and identified items such as shipwrecks is evidence that the crews, vessels and equipment being used to conduct the search are of the highest quality. We have complete confidence in the capabilities and dedication of everyone involved.

Weather

Poor weather is expected over the coming days, however the absence of vessels in the search area means this will have no effect on search operations.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Tuesday 6 September 2016

https://twitter.com/7NewsPerth/status/773109544335527936


Monday 5 September 2016

Three pieces of debris that could belong to MH370

https://youtu.be/cMLq7MnDPW8

MOZAMBIQUE authorities have exhibited three new pieces of aircraft parts that washed up along its coast and are suspected of belonging to the missing flight MH370.

The largest item is a triangular shaped piece which is red and white on one side and metallic on the other.

It was picked up late last month by a South African hotelier, Jean Viljoen, off the waters of Mozambique’s southern province of Inhambane, and was posted to Moz Forum on Facebook.

Joao de Abreu, director of Mozambique’s aviation authority said it was the first time a coloured piece had been found.

image15

Label on the triangular shaped debris found by Jean Viljoen on Linga Linga beach, Inhambane Mozambique on 25 August 2016, with Assembly Number 177W3103-3. Picture: Jean Viljoen

At a news conference, he said the piece could be “an aileron, a flap, (or) an elevator.” On the inside, “we can see a label which will make it much easier to identify which aircraft it belongs to,” he said.

3 pieces of the debris found in Mozambique

Three pieces of the debris found in Mozambique

The other two pieces are smaller and were picked up by the son of a European Union diplomat near the southern resort of Xai Xai and handed to the authorities last month, he said, giving no further details.

The items will be sent to Malaysia for examination.


Wednesday 31 August 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/770850141188173824

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is in the search area and conducting search operations.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 remains at anchor off Fremantle.
  • It is expected that searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by around December 2016.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

 

Debris found off Mozambique

Late last week, further debris was reported as being found on Linga Linga beach in Mozambique. Retrieval and analysis of evidence, including possible debris from MH370, is the responsibility of the Government of Malaysia. Australia, via the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), is continuing to support Malaysia with the examination of debris where appropriate.

The finding of debris on islands in the Indian Ocean and along the east and south coasts of Africa is consistent with drift modelling performed by Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific Industrial and Research Organisation (CSIRO), and affirms the focus of search efforts in the southern Indian Ocean.

Weather

Gale force winds with seas up to nine metres are expected in the south of the search area over the coming days. Search operations in the north of the search area are expected to be unaffected

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Tuesday 30 August 2016

What flaperon barnacles revealed about MH370 mystery

Not much to work with ... Professor Patrick De Deckker examining tiny barnacles from MH370 debris at the School of Earth Science at the Australian National University in Canberra. Picture: Kym SmithNot much to work with … Professor Patrick De Deckker examining tiny barnacles from MH370 debris at the School of Earth Science at the Australian National University in Canberra. Picture: Kym Smith

ANALYSIS of barnacles found on a flaperon from MH370 has added to the mystery surrounding the plane’s final resting place — with scientists in France and Australia reaching different conclusions.

Extensive testing by Australian National University (ANU) scientist Patrick De Deckker has revealed the onstart of growth of the barnacles occurred in warmer waters probably to the north of Perth.

The most extensive period of growth then took place in cooler water temperatures such as those in the latitude of Perth, and the more recent growth happened in the tropical waters around La Reunion island.

The French are yet to make public their findings on the barnacles but Professor Emeritus De Deckker confirmed they “differed somewhat” to his own.

Painstaking analysis … Professor Patrick De Deckker examining barnacles from MH370 debris at ANU in Canberra. Picture: Kym Smith

He stressed the process of testing barnacles could only reveal so much about where they grew, because very little was known about when barnacles started to form, and how fast the growth occurred.

“We just don’t know if the barnacles have been growing since the flaperon’s been floating, or if they started growing in the last few months,” Professor De Deckker said.

“But my findings are consistent with the current search area and the drift modelling done by the CSIRO.”

Precision science … An image of the work carried out by Professor Patrick De Deckker in the hope of determining where MH370 crashed. Picture: ANU

The same 2.5 centimetre barnacle was used by both French and Australian examiners — but different techniques applied.

“For my analysis, I used a laser to create little holes of 20 microns, over the length of the barnacles. In all we did 1500 analyses,” said Professor De Deckker.

“The French have done about 100 analyses on the same shell, but they used larger holes.”

In addition, the French looked at the oxygen isotope content of the shell — which is made from calcium carbonate, whereas Professor De Deckker examined the calcium and magnesium to determine in what water temperature it grew.

“In order to solve the difference between the French results and mine, we’d need to do more work,” he said.

“That would be quite an extensive project and (mean) possibly growing barnacles in tanks and so on — and we just don’t have the money or time.”

Looking for clues … The ANU’s Professor Patrick De Deckker examines a barnacle from MH370 debris. Picture: Kym Smith

Professor De Deckker provided his time and expertise to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau free of charge.

“It would cost up to $1500 a day (for additional analyses of the type carried out by the French team) and we’d have to book a machine well in advance,” he said.

The search for MH370 is poised to move into the area of the Southern Indian Ocean that Professor De Deckker identified as the place where the barnacles grew for an extensive period of time.

Weather permitting, the 120,000 square kilometre search zone will be fully scoured by the end of the year — and investigators remain hopeful the plane will be found in that time.

MH370 disappeared on March 8, 2014 after taking off from Kuala Lumpur to fly to Beijing with 239 people on board.

Source: TheDailyTelegraph.com.au

Also read:


Tuesday 30 August 2016

Two more possible new debris from MH370 discovered in Mozambique – National Aviation Institute

Two new possible pieces of the plane Malaysia Airlines missing for more than two years have been found in southern Mozambique, President of the National Aviation Authority (IACM) João Abreu said yesterday

The pieces, found on the coast of Inhambane province, join four other previous discoveries in Mozambique which might have belonged to the Boeing 777 that disappeared with all 239 people on board on March 08, 2014 en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

One piece was found earlier this year by an American tourist in Vilanculos, also in Inhambane province, and has been handed over to Malaysian authorities. Two other fragments were found in Xai-Xai, in Gaza province, also in the south.

João Abreu said that he was unaware of the circumstances in which the two new objects were found, noting only that they were delivered to the police Morrumbene district of Inhambane.

AFP reports the discovery, by a South African hotelier, Jean Viljoen, of only aircraft part in Morrumbene, But Abreu reiterates that there are two new pieces, which will join the other two still in the possession of the Mozambican authorities.

The fragments will be kept in Maputo until the Mozambican government answers a request submitted about a month ago by the Malaysian ministry of transport for a protocol to be set for a search for more traces on the coast of Mozambique, Abreu said.

The fragments are aerodynamic surfaces of about one square meter each and have not been proved to belong to the Malaysia Airlines aircraft. Only part of a of the Boeing 777 wing, recovered on a beach on neighbouring Reunion Island, has been definitely linked to MH370.

In April, the Australian Office for Security in Transport, which has been leading the search for the aircraft, said that two pieces of debris found on the Mozambique coast ‘almost certainly’ belong to the MH370 flight. A horizontal stabilizer containing the words ‘no step’found in February 2016 by Blaine Gibson and a  Flap track fairing panel No. 676EB, External, found in December 2015 by Liam Lotter.

Source: ClubOfMozambique.com


Monday 29 August 2016

Where is Flight MH370?

Two years ago a passenger jet disappears. Every expert believes the wreck to be off the coast of Australia. After spending huge sums they find – nothing. Thousands of kilometres away the treasure hunter Blaine Gibson has had more success. And a theory of his own.  Read more>>


Friday 26 August 2016

Debris found at  Linga Linga beach, Inhambane Mozambique

A South African tour operator in Mozambique claims to have found a large piece of missing plane MH370.

The debris was found on a beach called Linga Linga on the eastern coast of Mozambique.

“I found this piece on the beach in front of a lodge called Linga Linga Lodge on Thursday last week,” Jean Viljoen, a hotel manager in Mozambique`s southern province of Inhambane, told AFP.

Tour operator Jean Viljoen said he had given the piece of wreckage to local police who were investigating.

“It is a triangular shaped piece” with sides of about 1.2 meters point to point, and “it looks like it has spent a lot of time in the ocean,” said Jean Viljoen who discovered this piece on the beach. “It’s red and white on one side, and on the other there are stickers with registered numbers. Some are readable, “he said.

“It’s just the one very big piece that I’ve found so far, but I’m going to be going up and down our coastline with my boat and trying to see if there’s more.”

Source: ABC News

https://twitter.com/h1ppyg1rl/status/769142677925494784

https://twitter.com/Airlandseaman/status/769183691528691712

https://twitter.com/Airlandseaman/status/769159404721737728


Wednesday 24 August 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/768313023714893824

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is in the search area and conducting search operations.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is at anchor off Fremantle undertaking maintenance to ensure readiness for its next mission. It is anticipated that around October weather conditions will have improved sufficiently to allow the deployment of a Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV) from Dong Hai Jiu 101. This equipment will be used to further investigate a range of sonar contacts.
  • It is expected that searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area will be completed by approximately December 2016.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Drift modelling study

In July 2015 wreckage from an aircraft was found on La Réunion in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar. As La Réunion is French Territory, the wreckage was taken into custody by French judicial authorities who transported it to France where it was examined.

On 3 September 2015 French authorities confirmed that the wreckage was a wing part from a Boeing 777, known as a flaperon. Furthermore, unique identifiers on the flaperon identified it as definitely coming from MH370.

Over the last nine months there has been a range of debris found along western Indian Ocean shorelines that has been linked to MH370. The flaperon is, however, particularly important as it was the first piece of debris to be found and therefore it spent the least amount of time adrift.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has been working with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation over the past 18 months to model the drift of MH370 debris. Over the coming months a further intensive study will be undertaken.

Phase one involves setting adrift ocean drifter buoys used in the Global Drifter Program along with models of the flaperon which have been fitted with satellite trackers. The models will be tracked to establish the rate and direction of drift relative to the drifter buoys in open ocean conditions when subject to similar winds, currents and waves. Thirty years of real life Global Drifter Program data will then be used to model the drift of the flaperon.

On its own this information will not be able to identify the precise location of the aircraft. It is hoped, however, that when added to our existing knowledge and any future learnings a specific location of the aircraft will be able to be identified.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to improve from tomorrow.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


Tuesday 23 August 2016

https://twitter.com/NorbertTol/status/768057282068348928

On 11 July 2016, a Dutchman found a piece of debris, suspected to be a handle from an overhead compartment of a plane, close to the pier on Umhlanga beach in South Africa.

The item was just lying in plain sight on the beach close to the pier, he said.  It looked exactly as in the photo (above) and had a lot of scratches on it, as if it had been rubbing on sand for long. The finder left it on the beach as he wasn’t thinking anything of it at that time. According to his 12 year old son there were similar pieces between the rocks on the beach. No images were taken.


Monday 22 August 2016

Possible Flight MH370 wreckage found on South Africa’s coast

https://twitter.com/paultilsley/status/767794903778811904

https://youtu.be/2K-6uoCNhTQ

https://twitter.com/Airlandseaman/status/767840454800912384


Sunday 21 August 2016

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Sightings Over Maldives May Be Real, Blaine Gibson Says As His Debris Hunt Continues – 21 Aug 2016 – Inquisitr


Saturday 20 August 2016

MH370 debris: Durbanites asked to keep eyes open – 20 Aug 2016 – IOL.co.za
KZN search for missing flight MH370 gets underway today – 20 August 2016 – East Coast Radio


Friday 19 August 2016

Search for MH370 comes to KZN

The search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has brought two South Africans and an American to Kwazulu-Natal – in the hopes of locating more debris. 

The search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has brought two South Africans and an American to Kwazulu-Natal – in the hopes of locating more debris. 

https://youtu.be/yg37fK6uX9I

(Video by Khatija Nxedlana)

Together – Liam Lotter, Blaine Gibson and Neels Kruger have found 12 pieces of the airline which disappeared two years ago during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

Teenager Lotter found a piece of the missing plane in March this year, while on holiday with his family in Mozambique.

The group will start their search on the KZN south coast tomorrow.

They’re hoping to create awareness among locals – to keep their eyes open for pieces of the plane, which could provide answers for the 239 families whose loved ones went missing on the ill-fated flight.

Lawyer-turned-debris hunter Gibson, who traveled from America, will be in the province for four days.

He says he’s become friends with some of the families of those who were on-board the missing plane – which has inspired him to continue with his search.

“Imagine how they must feel. Two-and-a-half years now – no information, nothing from their loved ones; no idea of what happened to them, where or why. I cannot put myself – as much as I try – into their shoes and comprehend how they feel.”

Lotter says he’s immersed himself in the search.

“We need to do something, the three of us – myself, Blaine and Neels – because not much is being done. People are sort-of like shrugging it off, if I can say that. And we want to just try to help. Something that’s so small to me, is everything – it’s literally their whole life.”

Earlier today, Lotter and Gibson spoke to ECR Newswatch about their search mission.

Source: East Coast Radio


Friday 19 August 2016

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Experts hunting for the missing Malaysian airliner are attempting to define a new search area by studying where in the Indian Ocean the first piece of wreckage recovered from the lost Boeing 777 — a wing flap — most likely drifted from after the disaster that claimed 239 lives, the new leader of the search said.

Officials are planning the next phase of the deep-sea sonar search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 in case the current two-year search of 120,000 square kilometers (46,000 square miles) turns up nothing, said Australian Transport Safety Bureau chief commissioner Greg Hood, who took over leadership of the bureau last month.

However, a new search would require a new funding commitment, with Malaysia, Australia and China agreeing in July that the $160 million search will be suspended once the current stretch of ocean southwest of Australia is exhausted unless new evidence emerges that would pinpoint a specific location of the aircraft.

“If it is not in the area which we defined, it’s going to be somewhere else in the near vicinity,” Hood said in an interview this week.

Further analysis of the wing fragment known as a flaperon found on Reunion Island off the African coast in July last year — 16 months after the plane went missing — will hopefully help narrow a possible next search area outside the current boundary.

Six replicas of the flaperon will be sent to Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization’s oceanography department in the island state of Tasmania where scientists will determine whether it is the wind or the currents that affect how they drift, Hood said. This will enable more accurate drift modeling than is currently available.

If more money becomes available, the Australian bureau, which is conducting the search on Malaysia’s behalf, plans to fit the flaperons with satellite beacons and set them adrift at different points in the southern Indian Ocean around March 8 next year — the third anniversary of the disaster — and track their movements.

Meanwhile, barnacles found on the flaperon and an adjacent wing flap that washed up on Tanzania in June are being analyzed for clues to the latitudes they might have come from. The flap is in the Australian bureau’s headquarters in Canberra where it has been scoured for clues by accident investigators.

Peter Foley, the bureau’s director of Flight 370 search operations since the outset, said the enhanced drift modeling would hopefully narrow the next search area to a band of 5 degrees of latitude, or 550 kilometers (340 miles).

“Even the best drift analysis is not going to narrow it down to X-marks-the-spot,” Foley said.

Some critics argue that the international working group that defined the current search area — which includes experts from the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board, Britain’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch, the plane’s manufacturer Boeing, Australia’s Defense Science and Technology Group, satellite firm Inmarsat and electronics company Thales — made a crucial mistake by concluding that the most likely scenario was that no one was at the controls when the plane hit the ocean after flying more than five hours.

The airliner veered far off course during a flight from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to Beijing. What happened to the plane has become one of the biggest mysteries in aviation, with a wide range of theories, including that a hijacker could have killed everyone on board early in the flight by depressurizing the plane.

The current search area was defined by analysis of a final satellite signal from the plane that indicated it had run out of fuel. Scientists have determined how far the plane could have travelled from a height of up to 12,200 meters (40,000 feet) after both engines lost power.

But critics who favor the theory that Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah hijacked the plane argue that he could have glided the plane beyond the current search area. Some say he could have made a controlled ditch at sea in order to minimize debris and make the plane vanish as completely as possible. Officials say Zaharie flew a similar route on his home flight simulator only weeks before the disaster.

Foley said his bureau’s analysts were working on the flap to ascertain whether or not it was deployed when the plane hit the water. They will test their hypothesis with the Boeing accident investigation team to validate their findings.

Recent analysis of the final satellite signals also suggest the plane was descending at a rate of between 3,700 meters (12,000 feet) and 6,100 meters (20,000 feet) a minute before it crashed. A rate of 600 meters (2,000 feet) a minute would be typical of a controlled descent.

“The rate of descent combined with the position of the flap — if it’s found that it is not deployed — will almost certainly rule out either a controlled ditch or glide,” Foley said

“If it’s not in a deployed state, it validates, if you like, where we’ve been looking,” he said.

Crews have not given up hope of finding the plane in the current search area, which because of bad weather and 20-meter (65-foot) swells could take them until December to finish scanning.

Less than 10,000 square kilometers (4,000 square miles) of seabed, which is outside the original 60,000-square-kilometer (23,000-square-mile) high-priority search zone, remain to be searched.

More than 20 sonar contacts require closer examination by a sonar-equipped underwater drone. These are between 2,700 kilometers (1,700 miles) and 1,900 kilometers (1,200 miles) from the Australian port of Fremantle where the search ships are based.

“We are still hopeful and optimistic,” said Hood.

Foley said finding the plane was the only chance of the solving the mystery of what happened aboard Flight 370.

“We will never know what happened to that aircraft until we find it,” Foley said.

Sources: ABC News, DailyMail, BusinessInsider, NBC News


More News 19 August 2016

“Consensus” on MH370 theory cut – The Australian – Ean Higgins – 19th August 2016
Search for MH370 may be extended by Australia if funding can be found – 19 August 2016 – TheGuardian
MH370 recovery to target black boxes and mobile phones – 19 August 2016 – News.com.au
Head in the sand over MH370 – Byron Bailey – 19th August 2016 – The Australian


Wednesday 17 August 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/765775496344920064

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is in the search area. Sea conditions over the weekend were not suitable for deep tow operations. The vessel is standing by in the search area until the weather allows search operations to recommence.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 remains in Fremantle. Projected weather conditions for the next several weeks preclude the effective deployment of search equipment from this vessel. Dong Hai Jiu 101 will remain at anchor off Fremantle until weather conditions improve.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be poor over the coming days, but improving towards the end of the week. Strong winds and rough seas are expected to impact on search operations.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


More news 17 August 2016

Malaysia reveals details of investigation into MH370 Captain – Peter Lloyd ABC News 27 August 2016

http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/news/audio/pm/201608/20160817-pm06-mhsimulator.mp3


Tuesday 16 August 2016

 

On 16 August 2016 another piece was found by Alexandre Poussin Madatrek, about 70 nm south of where Blaine Gibson found several pieces on Riake Beach in June 2016. He handed it over to Air France officials. Current status is unknown.

8-dec16-madatrek-1

A piece of debris found 2016-08-16 by Alexandre Poussin Madatrek at Riake beach Madagascar. Handedover to Air France officials. Current status unknown.

 


Monday 15 Aug 2016

MOT:  SUMMARY OF POSSIBLE MH370 DEBRIS RECOVERED (15 AUGUST 2016)

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Monday 15 August 2016

Captain Zaharie Shah’s Recovered Flight Simulator Information: Preliminary Assessment from the MH370 Independent Group 

By; Victor Iannello, Don Thompson, Michael Exner, Richard Godfrey, Brian Anderson, Yap Fooh Fah, Barry Carlson, Thomas Kenyon, Henrik Rydberg, Sid Bennett, Geoff Hyman and Duncan Steel

Information related to the disappearance of MH370 was recently shared with the Independent Group (IG) by an individual who is not affiliated with any government entity in any country. The information appears to be part of a report compiled for and by the Royal Malaysia Police (RMP) and includes contributions from other Malaysian agencies. In this report, it is stated that data related to a flight simulator game were found on Captain Zaharie Shah’s home computer. The IG makes the following preliminary assessment, which is based on the content of the RMP report:

  1. Simulator data from the Microsoft Flight Simulator X (FSX) game were found on a solid state drive that was not electrically connected to the computer motherboard at the time it was recovered. The FSX game was uninstalled from that drive on 20th February 2014. The report did not provide any information on why the computer was in this state.
  2. The data of interest are fragments of *.FLT files, this being the format used by FSX to store parameters, including position coordinates at arbitrary points during a run of the simulator. The data were saved in a Shadow Copy Set, and were last modified on 3rd February 2014.
  3. The coordinates, if all from one simulation run, suggest the departure of a B777-200LR aircraft from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), a flight up the Malacca Strait, a turn to the south, and a termination in the Southern Indian Ocean near 45S 104E. This path is shown as a black line in Figure 1.
  4. A path connecting the turn and the final coordinates, when extrapolated further as a great circle, aligns with airfields servicing the McMurdo Station in Antarctica, which may have been chosen as the destination in the simulation. This extrapolation is also indicated in Figure 1.
  5. Within the Shadow Copy Set, there were two additional coordinates that were recovered for an aircraft parked at KLIA. No other coordinates recovered from the Shadow Copy Set, if there were any, were included in the RMP report.
  6. Although we cannot determine that the six points (see Table 1) are all from a single flight simulation run, the alignments of the points and the progressive depletion in fuel level, leading to an unpowered descent from an altitude of 37,600 feet down to 4,000 feet over a short distance, suggest the coordinates may well be related to the same flight simulation.
  7. A preliminary analysis of the flight data, derived by the IG from the data found on the solid state drive, is summarized in Table 1.
  8. We have no comment on whether these data link Captain Zaharie Shah to a crime.
  9. Work continues within the IG to better understand and validate the data, and to determine whether the data can be used to refine the search area for the aircraft.

Table 1. Parameters Derived from the Raw Simulator Data

Table 1. Parameters Derived from the Raw Simulator Data

Table 1. Parameters Derived from the Raw Simulator Data

Figure 1. Flight_paths

Figure 1: Flight paths into the southern Indian Ocean. In black: the simulated flight path obtained by connecting the coordinates found on Captain Zaharie Shah’s home computer. The grey line is an extrapolation of that path; point 5 in Table 1 is within a few kilometres of the great circle connecting point 4 and the airfield NZPG at McMurdo. In yellow, a representative flight path ending near the 7th arc and 37S from among those modelled by the Defence Science and Technology Group (DSTG) in Australia, and used by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) in defining the priority underwater search area (as shown by the green box).

Source: Duncansteel.com


Friday 12 August 2016

ATSB – Correcting the Record:
Ongoing false media reporting on search for MH370

12 August 2016

ATSB 12Aug2016 Ongoing False Media Reporting on search for MH370

ATSB Correcting the record: 12 August 2016

An article published in The Australian by Mr Ean Higgins on 12 August 2016 falsely accuses the ATSB of ‘secretly retracting’ information from a Joint Agency Coordination Centre operations update on 27 July.

In recent weeks the ATSB has been very careful to accurately describe the Defence Science and Technology (DST) Group’s analysis of the accident aircraft’s rates of descent at the final satellite handshake (known as the 7th arc). This analysis concludes that the metadata associated with the final two satellite communications from the aircraft to the ground earth station indicates that the aircraft was in a high, and increasing, rate of descent.

All the members of the Search Strategy Working Group have reviewed DST Group’s analysis and no objections to the analysis have been provided.

Source: ATSB


More news 12 August 2016

Why the 60 Minutes TV programme was wrong – Michael Exner – August 11, 2016


Thursday 11 August 2016

Expert on MH370 Disappearance: ‘There Is Absolutely No Mystery To What Happened’ – interview with Larry Vance – 11 August 2016 – Spiegel.de
Statement on Larry Vance Theory – Michael Exner – August 11, 2016


Wednesday 10 August 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/763239751100928000

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Discovery is conducting search activities. The vessel will depart the search area for the last time on 11 August and transit to Singapore to be readied for its next project, unrelated to the search for MH370.
  • Fugro Equator is conducting search operations.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 arrived in Fremantle on 8 August for a scheduled port visit.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search; should credible new information emerge which can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Fugro Discovery

The search vessel Fugro Discovery will be departing the search area on 11 August 2016, to undertake mandatory scheduled maintenance, bringing to an end its involvement in the search for MH370. The search plan provides for the remaining search area to be completed using the other vessels.

Fugro Discovery was brought from the United Kingdom to Fremantle in 2014 to join the search. After the search crew and equipment were mobilised, and following extensive sea trials and equipment testing, the vessel travelled to the search area where it commenced underwater search operations on 23 October 2014.

Since that time, Fugro Discovery has conducted a total of 16 swings. A swing consists of the journey from port to the search area, the time spent conducting search operations, and the journey back to port – generally around 40 days at sea. On each swing there have typically been around 30 personnel on the vessel including the ship’s crew and the search operation specialists. A total of 124 people have worked on the vessel; 13 of whom have worked on more than 7 swings.

In addition to the 51,000 square kilometres of the ocean floor searched by Fugro Discovery, the vessel has also travelled around 80,000 kilometres during its 16 transits from port to the search area and return.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be poor over the coming days, deteriorating further towards the end of the week. Strong winds and rough seas are expected to impact on search operations.

Previous versions:

MH370 Operational Search Updates


In the news
First ship to leave MH370 search as suspension looms  – 10 August 2016 – NBCNews
MH370 Search Ship Fugro Discovery Ends Mission Without Success – 10 August 2016 – NBCNews
Malaysian airline and ATSB reject MH370 pilot hijack theory – 10 August 2016 – The Australian


Wednesday 10 Aug 2016

The Search for Flight MH370

Kathryn Ryan speaks to Greg Hood, the Chief Commissioner at the Australian Transport Safety Bureau who, at the request of the Malaysian Government, accepted the responsibility for the underwater search for the Boeing 777 in the southern Indian Ocean.

http://podcast.radionz.co.nz/ntn/ntn-20160810-0908-the_search_for_flight_mh370-048.mp3


Tuesday 9 August 2016

MH370: New evidence links personal belongings found on Madagascar beach to wreckage 

A group representing the families of passengers and crew on board missing Malaysia Airlines flight 370 has revealed new evidence linking more than 160 personal belongings found on a remote beach off Africa to the people on the doomed jet.

Overview Possible Personal Items MH370 - 21 June 2016

Some of the possible MH370 personal effects

The inventory includes more than 60 women’s handbags.

They include one branded to a travel agency in a Chinese province where up to 18 passengers came from.

A shoe sole sold by Australian retailer Rivers was traced back to a Chinese footwear manufacturer.

The haul comes from the same 8 kilometre stretch of Madagascar coastline where pieces of confirmed MH370 wreckage have been found.

But Malaysia has ignored relatives’ pleas to gather the evidence.

Peter Lloyd reports.

http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/news/audio/pm/201608/20160809-pm-fullprogram.mp3

Source: abc.net.au

– Click HERE to view the Personal Effects found on Riake Beach, (Nosy Boraha), Isle St. Marie, Madagascar
– Click HERE to view the Personal Effects found on Antsiraka Beach Madagascar

Malaysian authorities ignoring new evidence, MH370 families say – 9 August 2016 – Radionz.co.nz
MH370: Malaysian authorities ignoring items that may have come from flight, support group says – 9 August 2016 – abc.net.au
Malaysian to collect personal items only if they’re from MH370 – 10 August 2016 – FreeMalaysiaToday



More in the news: 9 Aug 2016

MH370 in catastrophic death dive, says analysis – 9 August 2016 – The Australian
Lying in Plain Sight – 9 August 2016 – Duncan Steel


Thursday 4 August 2016

MH370 search halt despite “rogue pilot”

Malcolm Turnbull has scotched the prospect that the MH370 search would be extended to cover the “rogue pilot” theory, revealing that there is an international agreement to halt the operation.

“There has been an agreement reached between the countries ­involved and the search will be coming to an end when it is completed,’’ he said yesterday.

The current search area is said to be based on projections that the pilots lost consciousness.

Just 10,000sq km of a 120,000sq km area of the designated sea floor remain to be scoured.

However, Transport Minister Darren Chester has rejected suggestions that the search for flight MH370 was looking in the wrong place and says the decision on the search site took into account FBI intelligence that flagged the possib­ility the plane’s captain hijacked and crashed the aircraft.

Mr Chester said there was nothing new in recent articles suggesting the FBI had intelligence showing Malaysia Airlines captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah had “flown” a similar illogical zigzag path to the plane’s trajectory on his home flight simulator.

“The ATSB team in evaluating the search area considered all available information, including that information, that was available to it,’’ he said in Melbourne.

“It had to rely on the facts, and the facts were the last satellite handshake with MH370 indicated that the highest-probability search area was that 120,000sq km area (southwest of Perth).

“As I said, there is still 10,000 square kilometres still to go and we remain hopeful of success.” Flight MH370 disappeared on March 8, 2014, with 239 passengers and crew aboard.

Contact was lost with the Beijing-bound aircraft after it took an unexpected flight path from Kuala Lumpur, turning back across Malay­sia before heading west.

Analysis of satellite and other data showed it flew for another six hours, information used to establish the search area.

Neither Mr Chester nor his US counterpart, Transport Secretary Anthony Foxx, who visited Melbourne yesterday, would comment on whether the FBI data should be released. “I have learned very well to let the FBI speak for the FBI and I have learned very well not to get in the middle of what the investigators have found and let them speak for themselves,’’ said Mr Foxx.

Mr Chester said Australia’s prim­ary responsibility was the under­sea search, and this data would be released in due course.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has come under increasing pressure to expand the search area to take into account the rogue pilot theory, which it has been accused of discounting in favour of a scenario involving ­decompression or a loss of oxygen killing the pilots.

The ATSB has fended off claims from Byron Bailey, a ­former commercial airline pilot critical of what he says is the ­bureau’s refusal to countenance the rogue-pilot theory, and others.

“For the purposes of its search, the ATSB has not needed to determine — and has made no claims — about what might have caused the disappearance of the aircraft,’’ it has said.

“For search purposes, the rele­v­ant facts and analysis most closely match a scenario in which there was no pilot intervening in the latter stages of the flight.

“We have never stated that ­hypoxia (or any other factor) was the cause of this circumstance.”

Some critics of the search have attributed the government’s ­refusal to publicly embrace the rogue-pilot theory to the wish to spare Malaysia the embarrassment of having to acknowledge its citizen took part in an act of terror.

Mr Chester did not respond to The Australian’s requests for comment on these claims.

Source: TheAustralian


Thursday 4 August 2016

No proof MH370 deliberately crashed, says Liow

https://twitter.com/bernamadotcom/status/761119851863642112


PUTRAJAYA, Aug 4 (Bernama) — There is no proof to back a claim that Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 was deliberately crashed into the sea, said Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai.He said the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), which is leading the underwater search for MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean, came out with a theory that the aeroplane was in an ‘uncontrolled ditch’.”This will negate the ‘controlled ditch’ theory published recently,” he said referring to reports quoting an air crash investigator that MH370 was deliberately crashed into the sea.This was based on the erosion on the edges of recovered wing parts.The reports suggested the flaperon could only be extended by a pilot in full control of his plane.On the home flight simulator owned by MH370 pilot Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, Liow said the flight path to the southern Indian Ocean recovered from the simulator was just one of thousand routes found from it.”There is no evidence to prove that Captain Zaharie piloted the aeroplane to that area. The simulator was used by the pilot for trial and error in many areas. There are thousands of simulations to many destinations.”Yes there is simulation showing it flew to many parts of the world and it (southern Indian Ocean) is one of many. We cannot base on that to confirm,” he told reporters after attending the MOT monthly assembly here, Thursday.Flight MH370, carrying 239 passengers and crew, disappeared from radar shortly after taking off from Kuala Lumpur enroute to Beijing on March 8, 2014.The aeroplane has not been found despite a massive search operation in southern Indian Ocean where it was believed to have ended its flight after diverting from its original route.On July 22, Malaysia, China and Australia agreed to suspend but not terminate the search for flight MH370 upon completion of the priority 120,000 square kilometre search area, which may be wrapped up from October to December.On the flaperon found at La Reunion Island in July last year, Liow said French authorities exerted they wanted to hold on to it for court evidence.”At the same time, French authorities are still conducting investigation and further verification of the flaperon pending some documentation and information from several authorities, including Boeing,” he added.

“The French authorities exercise their rights to hold on to the flaperon but we want it to be returned to Malaysia,” he said, adding there was no timeline set for the French authorities to return the flaperon.

–BERNAMA

Sources:  BernamaTheStarnts

More in the news
Aussies clarify position on missing Flight MH370 – 4 Aug 2016 – FreeMalaysiaToday


Wednesday 3 August 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/760702978277969920

Key developments this week

  • Poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations in the past week.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is en route to Fremantle for resupply.

Underwater search operations

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.

At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search; should credible new information emerge which can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

Examination of Debris

Since the disappearance of MH370, many items of suspected debris have been handed in by members of the public. These items are potentially very important and people are encouraged to report any suspected debris to local authorities.

In response to enquiries received by the JACC, the following information about the examination process of debris is provided.

When debris is reported, photographs of the item are reviewed by Malaysian authorities, in consultation with relevant experts including the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) and Boeing. This preliminary examination can often quickly discount items as not being from an aircraft.

Should the item be identified as coming from an aircraft, Malaysia negotiates with the government of the country in which the debris is found to secure custody of the item so that a detailed examination can be undertaken. In some instances, the construction, composition and presence of unique details and markings have been able to definitively link items to a Boeing 777 and in some cases a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777. This in turn allows for the conclusion to be drawn that the item is almost certainly from MH370. This kind of analysis can be conducted in Malaysia, with assistance from the aircraft manufacturer but at Malaysia’s request, is sometimes conducted in Australia.

Some items that have shown evidence of marine life have had further analysis undertaken by Australian experts from Geoscience Australia, the Australian National University and other institutions in the hope that additional information relevant to the search can be gleaned.

In addition, drift analysis is being conducted by the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation in an attempt to determine if debris could have originated from the search area.

Whether items come to Australia to be examined is determined by the Malaysian Investigation Team in consultation with the ATSB on a case by case basis.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be poor over the coming days with gale force winds expected which are likely to impact on search operations.

Previous updates:
MH370 Operational Search Updates


Wednesday 4 August 2016

SKY AM Agenda—Interview by David Speers with Darren Chester on MH370

David Speers:  I just want to get your thoughts too on MH370. You’re under pressure, the Australian Government’s under pressure to keep the search going, you and China and Malaysia recently announced that it will conclude after the current zone is searched. But we are seeing further signs pointing towards the pilot being responsible for bringing down the plane deliberately. What is your view on this theory, some say it’s more than a theory now? Was the pilot responsible?

Darren Chester: Well, David, we need to keep in mind how the tripartite approach to this incident has been carried out. So, there is Malaysia, China and Australia all working very closely together. The Malaysians as the flag state for MH370 have responsibility for the investigation into the events leading up to the disappearance of MH370. Australia’s role has been very much focused on the search. First of all, we’re involved in the aircraft search- sorry, for the aerial search where we had our defence personnel doing a great job more than two years ago now and then we’ve moved on to the underwater search aspect of it now, relying on the best available analysis of the evidence where we had the last satellite handshake of MH370 indicated it was somewhere about 2600 kilometres west of Perth when it went into the ocean.

And we’ve targeted an area of 120,000 square kilometres for a very detailed underwater search. Now, we’re about 90 per cent of our way through that search area, so about 10,000 square kilometres still to be searched and we’re hopeful that we’ll have some success in those remaining weeks and months out in the ocean but if we don’t find the aircraft after that 120,000 square kilometres, the agreement between China, Malaysia and Australia is we will suspend the search awaiting any further credible evidence which would lead to a specific location so, we’re not abandoning the search…

David Speers: [Interrupts] Well, the credible evidence is that the system you talk about, the satellite, the tracking systems were shut down. Now, there’s of course evidence, apparently, about the pilot’s home flight simulator tracking a very similar plot just a month before this and a flaperon that’s been found, it was part of MH370, it was in a lowered position and the experts say that does indicate it was a controlled ditch by the pilot.

Darren Chester: So, David, this is what people need to understand here: our last factual bit of evidence was the satellite handshake which indicated the aircraft was descending rapidly in an area they call the seventh arc which has been the highest priority area, the focus area of the search. That doesn’t change whether a simulated flight from weeks or months previously indicated something else, the actual fact is this is where we last had contact with the aircraft and I’m not in a position to second guess our experts. We’ve had world leading experts from Australia, from the ATSB, but also from Boeing and from around the world looking at the data we have and coming up with our highest priority search area. This is not guesswork—this is the best they can do with the evidence they have.

They are desperate to find this aircraft. We are talking about people who have dedicated the last 2.5 years of their life to it. They are working very hard on this, the crews on the ground- the search vessel crews out there, they are dealing with some of the most inhospitable conditions in the world, they are desperate to find this aircraft. They’re talking about days out there, sometimes there’s 20 metre seas. They are working very hard; they remain hopeful they’re going to have success. We haven’t had success at this stage but that doesn’t mean we’ve given up hope and we’re going to keep working through that last 10,000 square kilometres of the high priority search area. Then there’ll be more analysis, if there’s more credible evidence coming through which gives us a specific location where we can focus our efforts, then we’ll look at it then.

But the Malaysian, Chinese and Australian Governments between them have put $200 million into this underwater search, $60 million of that has come from Australia. It’s been the biggest search in aviation history, so it is of historic proportion but it’s also been quite a heroic effort in terms of pushing the edge of human endurance out there in the ocean and pushing the envelope in terms of scientific understanding of the whole range of aspects that have to be considered as they analyse the data from MH370.

David Speers: Alright, Transport Minister, Darren Chester, we’ll have to leave it there. Thanks very much for joining us this morning.

Darren Chester: Thanks David.

Read the full interview here >> 


More in the news of 3 Aug 2016
Families of missing Malaysia flight passengers could be denied coverage as crash may be deliberate – 3 Aug 2016 – insurancebusiness.ca
Secrecy undermines MH370 search team – 3 Aug 2016 – The WestAustralian


Tuesday 2 August 2016

In the news

MH370: enough of the spurious counter-theories – 2 Aug 2016 – Byron Bailey – The Australian

Don’t stop MH370 search, Australian pilots union tells Canberra – 2 Aug 2016 – TheMalayOnline

MH370 sleuth says media reports are wrong on debris – 2 Aug 2016 – AirlineRatings

Interview: CBC News Network’s Jennifer Hall speaks with crash investigator Larry Vance on why he believes the flight’s disappearance was a “deliberate” act. (Video) – 2 Aug 2016 – CBC

Hydrophone data and MH370 – 1 Aug 2016 – Richard Godfrey – Duncansteel.com


Sunday 31 July 2016

MH370 Claims Malaysian authorities withheld vital information to be investigated on 60 Minutes.  For the full story, watch Ross Coulthart’s report on 60 Minutes tonight at 7pm. |  Watch>>

Watch it here

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLuZ54s7N406fE3MUjd3B4WB9L0J5wd9x_

In the news:

Evidence mounting MH370 was glided into ocean – 31 July 2016 – News.com.au
MH370: Crash investigator tells 60 Minutes the missing flight was deliberately ditched into the sea – 31 July 2016 – 9News
Ms Weeks told 60 Minutes Rosmah Mansor implied the pilots ‘took’ the jet – 31 July 2016 – DailyMail
MH370: It wasn’t an FBI report so why was it given a false label? 31 July 2016 – Cirkey


Saturday 30 July 2016

In the news
What lies beneath: Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 search a sham? – 30 July 2016 – The Australian


Friday 29 July 2016

Latest piece likely from missing MH370

MEDIA RELEASE
DC081/2016
29 July 2016

29 July 2016 Latest piece likely from missing MH370

MEDIA RELEASE DC081/2016, 29 July 2016

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said today it is highly likely that the latest piece of debris being analysed by Australian Transport and Safety Bureau (ATSB) is from missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370.

“The wing part was found in Tanzania and transported to Australia for analysis by ATSB,” Mr Chester said.

“The experts will continue to analyse this piece to assess what information can be determined from it.”

Previously one piece of debris has been confirmed as coming from MH370 and four further items were determined to be almost certainly from the missing aircraft.

The debris pieces were located in areas consistent with drift modelling performed by Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and affirms the focus of search efforts in the southern Indian Ocean.

Mr Chester said the underwater search was continuing around 2600kms west of Perth. Subject to weather conditions, the targeted 120,000 square kilometre search in water up to six kilometres deep is expected to be finalised by December.

“We remain hopeful that the aircraft will be located in the remaining search area,” Mr Chester said.

“As agreed by Ministers from Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China and Australia at the tripartite meeting on 22 July 2016, in the event that the aircraft is not located in the current area, the search for MH370 will be suspended on the completion of the 120,000 square kilometre high priority search area unless credible new evidence about the specific location of the aircraft emerges.”

The latest piece of debris being examined at the Australian Transport and Safety Bureau.

The latest piece of debris being examined at the Australian Transport and Safety Bureau.

Source: minister.infrastructure.gov.au

More in the news:
Wing part found in Tanzania is ‘highly likely’ from MH370 – 29 July 2016 – News.com.au
 MH370 Pilot’s Flight to Nowhere Proves Nothing – 29 July 2016 – The Daily Beast
IGP: Everything is speculation untill mh370 blackbox is found – 28 July 2016 – FreeMalaysiaToday


Thursday 28 July 2016

Liow: No proof of MH370 flight simulation

Give evidence to investigating team if it exists, says minister.

PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia is unaware of any evidence that MH370 pilot Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah conducted a simulated flight deep into the remote southern Indian Ocean less than a month before the plane vanished.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said there was no indication that Zaharie had flown that route and authorities here were not aware of such evidence.

He said criminal investigations were ongoing and he would leave it to the investigation team to examine whatever evidence they had.

The New York magazine claimed to have obtained a confidential document from the Malaysian police investigation into the disappearance of MH370, which “showed the strongest evidence Zaharie made off with the plane in a premeditated act of mass murder-suicide”.

“We don’t have that evidence as of now. If you have that evidence, please hand it over to the investigation team,” Liow said.

Meanwhile, Malaysia Airlines Berhad and Boeing inked a deal here for 50 Boeing 737 Max
airplanes. Liow said the deal was a positive sign that MAS was firmly on the right trajectory.

MAS had made good progress in its turnaround plan, he added, delivering ahead of its financial budget for the first three months of this year. “The Government is confident that MAS will be able to complete its recovery plan successfully,” he said.

Liow added that the Government viewed the airline as a critical partner in promoting Malaysia as a tourist and business destination, as well as connecting Malaysians all over the world.

“MAS itself contributed approximately RM6.9 bil to Malaysia’s GDP. For every person employed by the company, another four jobs are supported elsewhere in the economy,” he said.

Source: mot.gov.my, Sinar HarianSinar Harian (my)


Wednesday 27 July 2016

Computer modeling puts MH370’s possible crash side 500 km farther north

2-newstudyreve eric janssen

Diagram showing the estimated flight path of MH370 (in red) based on military radar and satellite data analysis, as well as the current underwater search area (smaller rectangle) and the region (in green) where new research indicates the wreckage is most likely to be. The green area in the map marks the location where the five confirmed debris found so far (also marked in the image) are most likely to have originated from. Credit: Modified from Figure 1 of Jansen et al., Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci (2016) by the lead author of the paper.

A team of researchers in Italy has used the location of confirmed debris from MH370 to determine where the airliner might have crashed, and where further debris could be found. The study is published today (27 July) in Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, an open access journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).

“Our result is the first to calculate the movement of the debris that best agrees with all five of the currently confirmed discoveries. This should make it the most accurate prediction,” says Eric Jansen, a researcher at the Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change in Italy and lead-author of the study.

In March 2014, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 vanished with 239 passengers and crew on board. Extensive search efforts in the southern Indian Ocean, where the aircraft is thought to have crashed, have yet to locate the main wreckage, though debris have washed up on the African east coast and Indian-ocean islands.

The northern half of the area where authorities are currently searching for the plane, off the coast of Australia, overlaps with the area the new simulation indicates as the most likely origin of the debris found so far. “However, our simulation shows that the debris could also have originated up to around 500 km further to the north,” says Jansen. “If nothing is found in the current search area, it may be worth extending the search in this direction.”

To find out how MH370 debris drifted since the crash, the researchers ran a computer model that used oceanographic data from the EU Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service, including data of global surface currents and winds over the past two years. To improve their simulation, they used the locations of the five confirmed debris found to date: two in Mozambique and one each in Réunion, South Africa and Rodrigues Island (Mauritius).

https://youtu.be/h5j9bqJXnmY

This animation shows how the floating debris from the MH370 aircraft could have spread, from the day of the crash up until May 2016. The location of the debris at the various times is calculated using a computer model based on oceanographic data and the location of the five confirmed debris found to date (indicated by red dots). Credit: Eric Jansen

They started their computer simulation by placing a large number of virtual particles in the ocean, and then examined where they would go based on the ocean currents and winds after the crash. Since the exact crash location and how much of an effect wind has on the debris are unknown, researchers simulate different scenarios. From this, they could construct a so-called superensemble: a combination of simulations that best describes the debris found so far.

“Imagine that you want to know what the weather is going to be tomorrow, but you have several websites that give contradictory information. Which one do you trust? You check what weather they predicted for today and you put more faith in the websites that were correct and less in those that were wrong,” Jansen explains. “This is more or less what we do for MH370: we perform many simulations that are all plausible given the information that we know about the flight. When we combine the results of all these simulations, we give more importance to those that predicted the debris that was found correctly.”

“If new debris is discovered, we can update the result in a matter of minutes,” says Jansen. In the first stage of the simulation, the computer model calculates the various ways in which debris could have drifted, which takes some time on their supercomputer. But the locations of the discovered debris are only used in the final stage, when combining the possible drift paths to find the most likely ones. Once the first stage of the is run, it is quick and easy to incorporate new debris data.

The results indicate that the most probable locations to discover additional washed up are Tanzania and Mozambique, as well as the islands of Madagascar, Réunion, Mauritius and the Comoros. The main wreckage is likely to be in the wide search area between 28°S and 35°S (see figure). This overlaps with the current underwater search area between 32°S and 35°S, but indicates the airliner could also be further north than where authorities are currently searching.

“The disappearance of flight MH370 is probably one of the most bizarre events in modern history. It is important to understand what happened, not only for all the people directly involved, but also for the safety of aviation in general. We hope that we can contribute to this, even if our study is just a small piece of a very complicated puzzle.”

Read the abstract here | Read the paper here

Source:  nat-hazards-earth-syst-sci.net
In the news: Phys.orgBBC News, Dailymailsnipl.ly


Wednesday 27 July 2016

Looking Back into Area 25S 101E (HAI XUN 01 Ping signal detections on 4 + 5 April 2014) 

Hai Xun 01

#MH370: Information relevant to Area 25S 101E, HAI XUN 01’s 37.5 kHz Ping Detection’s on 4 and 5 April 2014. For research purpose.

 


Wednesday 27 July 2016

Joint Agency Coordination Centre  – MH370 Operational Search Update 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/758169279544061956

Key developments this week

  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is currently on weather standby and will conduct underwater search operations as weather and sea conditions allow.
  • More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.
  • Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China met in Malaysia to discuss the status of the search and future arrangements should the aircraft not be located in the search area. Further details are below.
  • There was significant media coverage of data obtained from the MH370 Captain’s home flight simulator. Further information is included below.

Ministerial Tripartite Meeting, 22 July 2016

Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China met in Malaysia last week to discuss a range of matters relating to the search. The key decision from the meeting was that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search; should credible new information emerge which can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.

The full communique from the Ministerial Tripartite Meeting is available from the JACC website.

In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, the existing agreement between Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation, remains in place.

Media reports about MH370 Captain’s flight simulator

On Friday 22 July 2016, there were several media reports regarding so called FBI investigation into the MH370 Captain’s home flight simulator.  Media coverage suggested the Captain had plotted a course to the southern Indian Ocean and that the disappearance of MH370 was a deliberate planned murder/suicide.

This type of scenario is not new and has been reported in the media previously.

The Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team has considered the information and it will be dealt with in its final report.

To determine the search area, the ATSB has worked closely with international experts in satellite communications, aircraft systems, data modelling and accident investigation to form the Search Strategy Working Group. This includes specialists from the following organisations:

  • Air Accidents Investigation Branch (UK);
  • Boeing (USA);
  • Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia);
  • Department of Civil Aviation (Malaysia);
  • Inmarsat (UK);
  • National Transportation Safety Board (USA);
  • Thales (UK).

The simulator information shows only the possibility of planning.  It does not reveal what happened on the night of the aircraft’s disappearance, nor where the aircraft is located.

For the purposes of defining the underwater search area, the relevant facts and analysis most closely match a scenario in which there was no pilot intervening in the latter stages of the flight.

While the flight simulator data provides a piece of information, the best available evidence of the aircraft’s location is based on what we know from the last satellite communications with the aircraft.  The last satellite communication with the aircraft showed it was most likely in a high rate of descent in the area of what is known as the 7th arc.  This is indeed the consensus of the Search Strategy Working Group.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be poor over the coming days and search operations are likely to be impacted.



More in the news: 27 July 2016

Transport minister says unaware of MH370 ‘murder suicide’ claims – 27 July 2016 – TheMalayMailOnline


Tuesday 26 July 2016

In the News
Australian officials warned families of MH370 data leak from FBI – 26 July – The Australian
Is the media inventing MH370 stories, or just being gullible? – 26 July 2016 – Crikey
PM’s hands bound on MH370 search secrets – 26 July 2016 – The Australian
All MH370 plane crash theories have ‘flaws’, Warren Truss says – 26 July 2016 – The Australian
Sister of MH370 pilot: My brother is a scapegoat – 26 July 2016 – CNN


Monday 25 July 2016

ATSB Correcting the record: False and inaccurate media report on the search for MH370

25 July 2016 False and inaccurate media report on the search for MH370

25 July 2016 – ATSB Correcting the record:

An article published in The Australian today by Byron Bailey in relation to the search for MH370 contains inaccurate information and false assertions. In the interests of providing a transparent and accurate account, the ATSB considers it necessary to correct the record.

Firstly, Mr Bailey claims that the company contracted by the ATSB to conduct the search, Fugro, believes they are looking in the wrong place. In fact, Fugro has publicly denied this claim and issued a statement to say:

Fugro wishes to make it very clear that we believe the search area to have been well defined based on all of the available scientific data. In short, we have been thoroughly looking in the most probable place – and that is the right place to search.

Mr Bailey also claims that FBI data from MH370 captain’s home simulator shows that the captain plotted a course to the southern Indian Ocean and that it was a deliberate planned murder/suicide. There is no evidence to support this claim.

As Infrastructure and Transport Minister Darren Chester said in a statement, the simulator information shows only the possibility of planning. It does not reveal what happened on the night of its disappearance nor where the aircraft is located.

While the FBI data provides a piece of information, the best available evidence of the aircraft’s location is based on what we know from the last satellite communications with the aircraft. This is indeed the consensus of international satellite and aircraft specialists.

Mr Bailey continues to incorrectly claim that the ATSB rejects any possibility that MH370’s disappearance was the result of a person taking control of the aircraft. As the ATSB has previously stated:

For the purposes of its search, the ATSB has not needed to determine – and has made no claims – about what might have caused the disappearance of the aircraft. For search purposes, the relevant facts and analysis most closely match a scenario in which there was no pilot intervening in the latter stages of the flight. We have never stated that hypoxia (or any other factor) was the cause of this circumstance.

Mr Bailey also states that during his experience with a B777 simulator, if the crew were unresponsive, then on second-engine flame-out due to fuel exhaustion the autopilots would disconnect and the aircraft would enter a terminal dive at 1200 km/hr. In fact, extensive testing on Boeing’s (the manufacturer of the missing Boeing 777) simulator shows that after running out of fuel, the aircraft actually stays airborne for several minutes and descends at various rates in a “fugoid”(or wave-like) motion.

It is disappointing that Mr Bailey continues to make false accusations and inaccurate statements in relation to the search for MH370. To determine the search area, the ATSB has worked closely with international experts in satellite communications, aircraft systems, data modelling and accident investigation. This includes specialists from (and who draw on the broader expertise of) the following organisations:

  • Air Accidents Investigation Branch (UK)
  • Boeing (USA)
  • Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia)
  • Department of Civil Aviation (Malaysia)
  • Inmarsat (UK)
  • National Transportation Safety Board (USA)
  • Thales (UK)

The ATSB’s correction to Mr Bailey’s previous article from 18 January 2016 can be found on this page.

The ATSB has met, on a number of occasions, with the family and friends of MH370 passengers and crew, both in Australia and in Malaysia. Of further concern to the ATSB is the intense personal impact that claims such as Mr Bailey’s has on those who are suffering as a result of this tragedy.

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/757488098829668352

Articles refered to in ATSB Statement:
It’s time for Senate probe into what’s known on Flight MH370 – Byron Bailey – 25 July 2016 – The Australian
The case for pilot Zaharie Ahmad Shah’s hijack of flight MH370 – Byron Bailey – 9 Jan 2016 The Australian
We’ve been looking in the wrong place – by Jonathan Barrett and Swati Pandey – 21 July 2016 Reuters MH370 search team raises prospect plane could lie elsewhere
Video – Bloomberg 20 July 2016

More in the news
MH370: report not for Australia to reveal says Malcolm Turnbull – The Australian 25 July 2016. Video Skynews
MH370: Australia kept Malaysia’s face saving secret that pilot chief suspect – ABC.net – 25 July 2016
Australia Basically Just Confirmed That the MH370 Pilot Simulated a One-Way Flight Into the Ocean – Jeff Wise – 25 July 2016 – NewYorkMagazine

https://youtu.be/GQRc1Y5culI

Stratfor Chief Security Office Fred Burton discusses the disappeared flight, in light of news that the search for it has been suspended.
For more analysis, visit: http://www.Stratfor.com


Sunday 24 July 2016

Australia’s involvement in the search for Malaysia Airlines MH370

24 July Media Release

Media Release 24 July 2016

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 disappeared on 8 March 2014 en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. There were 239 passengers and crew aboard, including six Australian citizens, and a New Zealand citizen resident in Perth. Under international convention, Malaysia carries the overall responsibility for the investigation and search for flight MH370.

Initial Search

On 17 March 2014, following discussions between former Australian Prime Minister, the Hon Tony Abbott MP, and Malaysian Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak, Australia assumed responsibility for coordination of a search in Australia’s search and rescue region.

The surface search was coordinated by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), and supported by the Australian Defence Force and other agencies. The initial search phase involved 22 military aircraft and 19 ships from eight countries, covering search areas of more than 4.6 million square kilometres.  Civilian aircraft contracted to AMSA also participated in the search.

Following Malaysia’s 24 March 2014 announcement that flight MH370 ended in the southern Indian Ocean, the search transitioned to a search and recovery operation led by Australia.

On 30 March 2014, the Prime Minister established the Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) to coordinate all Australian Government support for the search into missing flight MH370. The JACC is also the coordination point for whole-of-Australian Government information, messaging and stakeholder engagement, including keeping the families of those onboard and the general public informed of the progress of the search.

The JACC also coordinates all international engagement with the Government of Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China.

Subsequently on 28 April 2014, the Australian Prime Minister announced that it was highly unlikely that any aircraft debris remained on the ocean surface and therefore the search for the missing aircraft would move to a new intensified underwater search.

Investigation

Malaysia is the state of registration for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 and as such has responsibility under the international aviation treaty arrangements titled the Chicago Convention for the investigation into the disappearance of the aircraft.

On 26 March 2014, Australia accepted Malaysia’s invitation to participate as an Accredited Representative in its investigation into MH370’s disappearance in line with the provisions of Annex 13 of the Chicago Convention.  The investigation team established by Malaysia comprises Accredited Representatives from seven countries, and Australia is represented by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB).

The ATSB has also assisted with the examination of debris that has been found on the east coast of various African countries. The ATSB supports the Malaysian Investigation team to examine various pieces that have been located and determine whether they are connected to missing flight MH370.

The First Ministerial Tripartite Meeting

At a Tripartite Meeting on 5 May 2014, Malaysia, the People’s Republic of China and Australia agreed that the next phase of the search for MH370 involved three major stages:

  • reviewing all existing information and analysis to define a priority search zone of up to 60,000 square kilometres along the seventh arc in the southern Indian Ocean;
  • conducting a bathymetric survey to map the sea floor in the defined search area; and
  • acquiring the specialist services required for a comprehensive search of the sea floor in that area.

As agreed with Malaysia and China, Australia had led this work through the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB).

Definition of the Search Area

All the evidence—based on independent analysis of satellite, radar and aircraft performance data from many international experts—indicates the aircraft entered the sea close to a long but narrow arc in the southern Indian Ocean.

The ATSB has been responsible for defining the search area and has been coordinating a search strategy group since May 2014.  The group brings together satellite and aircraft specialists from the following organisations:

  • Air Accidents Investigation Branch (UK);
  • Boeing (US);
  • Defence Science and Technology Organisation (Australia);
  • Department of Civil Aviation (Malaysia);
  • Inmarsat (UK);
  • National Transportation Safety Board (US); and
  • Thales (UK).

The group has continually worked to define the most probable position of the aircraft at the time of the last satellite communications and updated this advice based on the latest information throughout the search. This work has been peer reviewed and scrutinized by a range of international experts.

More recent work facilitated and led by the ATSB includes debris modelling and barnacle analysis through the CSIRO, and review and refinement activities through the Defence Science and Technology Group.

Bathymetry

Bathymetry survey of the sea floor provides detailed, high-resolution data that is crucial to plan and conduct the intensified underwater search. In particular, bathymetry provides basic mapping of the ocean floor to subsequently enable the safe and efficient use of equipment that provide sonar images utilized to identify debris from MH370.

Underwater Search

The underwater search is a comprehensive search of the sea floor for the final resting place of flight MH370 led by the ATSB.  In addition to locating the aircraft, the underwater search aims to map the MH370 debris field in order to identify and prioritise the recovery of specific aircraft components, including flight recorders, which will assist the Malaysian investigation.  The underwater search uses vehicles equipped with side scan sonar, synthetic aperture sonar, and multibeam echo sounders, with video cameras available to be deployed to locate and identify MH370. The ATSB coordinates all search operations including planning, analysis of the data with the support of Geoscience Australia, and liaison with all vessels, crew and equipment operation.

At a meeting of Ministers from Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China held in Kuala Lumpur on 16 April 2015, it was agreed that the search area would be extended to 120,000 square kilometres, thereby covering the entire highest probability area identified by expert analysis. It was also agreed that in the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, would be no further expansion of the search area.

At the most recent meeting of Ministers from Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China held in Putrajaya in Malaysia on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would not end, but be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

The suspension does not mean the termination of the search. Ministers reiterated that the aspiration to locate MH370 has not been abandoned. Should credible new information emerge which can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given in determining next steps.

Three vessels—Fugro Discovery, Fugro Equator and Dong Hai Jiu 101 (Chinese vessel)—are currently deployedforthe underwater search. More than 110,000 square kilometres have been searched so far.

It is anticipated that searching the remaining area may take until December 2016 to complete, particularly given the adverse weather conditions in the winter months. However, this could take longer.

minister.infrastructure.gov.au


Sunday 24 July 2016

IGP dismisses MH370 mass murder suicide report

PETALING JAYA,July 24 — Police yesterday dismissed reports MH370 was steered into the sea intentionally by the pilot.

A New York magazine report had in its exclusive said a document from Malaysian police showed Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah had “conducted a simulated flight deep into the remote southern Indian Ocean less than a month before the plane vanished” and that “the vanishing plane was a pre-planned mass murder suicide”.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said police had never handed over information to any quarters in New York.

“We have never submitted such a report to any authority abroad including the FBI. This report is not true,” he said.

The report said Zaharie had used an elaborate home-built flight simulator to steer himself over the Strait of Malacca and into the remote southern Indian Ocean, a course with striking resemblance to the route the Malaysia Airlines jet is believed to have taken.

According to the report, the FBI recovered deleted data points from the flight simulator on Zaharie’s hard drive.

“We found a flight path, that lead to the southern Indian Ocean, among the numerous other flight paths charted on the flight simulator, that could be of interest,” the document said, according to New York magazine.

Although the paths are similar, the simulated flight’s end-point is located some 1,450km from the area where the plane is believed to have gone down.

News of the simulated flight came the same day Malaysia, Australia and China, — the three nations leading the search — said hope of finding the plane’s final resting place is “fading” and that the massive hunt will be suspended if nothing turns up in the suspected crash zone.

Meanwhile, family members of the passengers aboard the missing plane were adamant to seeking answers although authorities have announced the suspension of the search for the wreckage later this year.

Chinese national Wen Wancheng, 64, whose son Wen Yongsheng was on the flight, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation he would take legal action against the authorities should they halt the search.

“How can our family members let them go? We will sue them. We will ask them to continue to search,” he said.

Wen, who had made regular trips from Jinan in Shandong province to the Malaysia Airlines office in Beijing to push for answers, refused to accept the official explanation that the aircraft crashed in the Indian Ocean

“They’ve been searching for more than two years and there is no result. It means only one thing, Australia is a big fool, wasting money, wasting manpower,” he said.

Dai Shuqin, who had five family members on the flight, said while the suspension comes as no surprise, the next-of-kin would not give up.

“We knew they would do this. It’s very frustrating. We feel very angry about it. I will keep requesting that they continue searching.

“We will continue petitioning. We will go to the Malaysian government, Malaysian embassy, Malaysia Airlines … we will not give up,” she said.

Zhang Qian, whose wife Wang Houbin, was a passenger, demanded for an explanation from the authorities.

“No matter what it is called, suspension or termination, it is the end of the search. If it is a suspension, then when is it going to resume and why is there a need for suspension?

“We must be given a reason and we must be given a convincing explanation on how the whole thing has been developing, instead of being kept in the dark,” he said.

Australian national Jeanette Maguire, who lost her sister and brother-in-law, said she could understand the authorities’ decision as the A$180 million (RM544 million) hunt was expensive.

“It’s very difficult to accept, but we do understand that these things do happen. They need more information so that they can progress and put more money into this because it’s costing an absolute fortune,” she said.

She, however, said her family was looking forward to a new credible finding before the suspension comes into effect.

Source: TheMalayMailOnline


Friday 22 July 2016

Exclusive: MH370 Pilot Flew a Suicide Route on His Home Simulator Closely Matching Final Flight

Image

MH370 pilot Zaharie Ahmad Shah

New York has obtained a confidential document from the Malaysian police investigation into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 that shows that the plane’s captain, Zaharie Ahmad Shah, conducted a simulated flight deep into the remote southern Indian Ocean less than a month before the plane vanished under uncannily similar circumstances. The revelation, which Malaysia withheld from a lengthy public report on the investigation, is the strongest evidence yet that Zaharie made off with the plane in a premeditated act of mass murder-suicide.

The document presents the findings of the Malaysian police’s investigation into Zaharie. It reveals that after the plane disappeared in March of 2014, Malaysia turned over to the FBI hard drives that Zaharie used to record sessions on an elaborate home-built flight simulator. The FBI was able to recover six deleted data points that had been stored by the Microsoft Flight Simulator X program in the weeks before MH370 disappeared, according to the document. Each point records the airplane’s altitude, speed, direction of flight, and other key parameters at a given moment. The document reads, in part: >

Image
MH370’s presumed flight path is in yellow. Zaharie’s simulated suicide flight is in red.

New York has obtained a confidential document from the Malaysian police investigation into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 that shows that the plane’s captain, Zaharie Ahmad Shah, conducted a simulated flight deep into the remote southern Indian Ocean less than a month before the plane vanished under uncannily similar circumstances. The revelation, which Malaysia withheld from a lengthy public report on the investigation, is the strongest evidence yet that Zaharie made off with the plane in a premeditated act of mass murder-suicide.

The document presents the findings of the Malaysian police’s investigation into Zaharie. It reveals that after the plane disappeared in March of 2014, Malaysia turned over to the FBI hard drives that Zaharie used to record sessions on an elaborate home-built flight simulator. The FBI was able to recover six deleted data points that had been stored by the Microsoft Flight Simulator X program in the weeks before MH370 disappeared, according to the document. Each point records the airplane’s altitude, speed, direction of flight, and other key parameters at a given moment. The document reads, in part: >

Search officials believe MH370 followed a similar route, based on signals the plane transmitted to a satellite after ceasing communications and turning off course. The actual and the simulated flights were not identical, though, with the simulated endpoint some 900 miles from the remote patch of southern ocean area where officials believe the plane went down. Based on the data in the document, here’s a map of the simulated flight compared to the route searchers believe the lost airliner followed:

Rumors have long circulated that the FBI had discovered such evidence, but Malaysian officials made no mention of the find in the otherwise detailed report into the investigation, “Factual Information,” that was released on the first anniversary of the disappearance.

The credibility of the rumors was further undermined by the fact that many media accounts mentioned “a small runway on an unnamed island in the far southern Indian Ocean,” of which there are none.

From the beginning, Zaharie has been a primary suspect, but until now no hard evidence implicating him has emerged. The “Factual Information” report states, “The Captain’s ability to handle stress at work and home was good. There was no known history of apathy, anxiety, or irritability. There were no significant changes in his life style, interpersonal conflict or family stresses.” After his disappearance, friends and family members came forward to described Zaharie as an affable, helpful family man who enjoyed making instructional YouTube videos for home DIY projects — hardly the typical profile of a mass murderer.

The newly unveiled documents, however, suggest Malaysian officials have suppressed at least one key piece of incriminating information. This is not entirely surprising: There is a history in aircraft investigations of national safety boards refusing to believe that their pilots could have intentionally crashed an aircraft full of passengers. After EgyptAir 990 went down near Martha’s Vineyard in 1999, for example, Egyptian officials angrily rejected the U.S. National Transport Safety Board finding that the pilot had deliberately steered the plane into the sea. Indonesian officials likewise rejected the NTSB finding that the 1997 crash of SilkAir 185 was an act of pilot suicide.

Previous press accounts suggest that Australian and U.S. officials involved in the MH370 investigation have long been more suspicious of Zaharie than their Malaysian counterparts. In January, Byron Bailey wrote in The Australian: “Several months after the MH370 disappearance I was told by a government source that the FBI had recovered from Zaharie’s home computer deleted information showing flight plan waypoints … my source … left me with the impression that the FBI were of the opinion that Zaharie was responsible for the crash.”

However, it’s not entirely clear that the recovered flight-simulator data is conclusive. The differences between the simulated and actual flights are significant, most notably in the final direction in which they were heading. It’s possible that their overall similarities are coincidental — that Zaharie didn’t intend his simulator flight as a practice run but had merely decided to fly someplace unusual.

Today, ministers from Malaysia, China, and Australia announced that once the current seabed search for MH370’s wreckage is completed, they will suspend further efforts to find the plane. The search was originally expected to wrap up this month, but stormy weather has pushed back the anticipated completion date to this fall. So far, 42,000 square miles have been covered at a cost of more than $130 million, with another 4,000 square miles to go.

I must emphasise that this does not mean we are giving up on the search for MH370,” Malaysian Transport minister Liow Tiong Lai said. Officials have previously stated that if they received “credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft,” the search could be expanded.

But some, including relatives of the missing passengers, believe that that evidentiary threshold has already been past. Recent months have seen the discovery of more than a dozen pieces of suspected aircraft debris, which analyzed collectively could narrow down where the plane went down. (The surprising absence of such wreckage for more than a year left me exploring alternative explanations that ultimately proved unnecessary.) The fact that Zaharie apparently practiced flying until he ran out of fuel over the remote southern Indian Ocean suggests the current search is on the right track — and that another year of hunting might be a worthwhile investment.

Source: Exclusive: MH370 Pilot Flew a Suicide Route on His Home Simulator Closely Matching Final Flight | NewYorkMagazine – Jeff Wise Jeff Wise – 22 July 2016

Where Did the Search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Go So Wrong? | PopularMechancs.com – Jeff Wise – 22 July 2016


Friday 22 July 2016

MH370 Tripartite Meeting – Joint Communiqué – 22 July 2016

2016-07-22-photo-00002325

MH370 Tripartite Meeting – 22 July 2016: Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai (centre) speaks at the press conference in Kuala Lumpur on July 22, 2016, with his counterparts from Australia and China.ST PHOTO: TRINNA LEONG

22 July 2016 MH370 Tripartite meeting

MH370 Tripartite Meeting – Joint Communiqué – 22 July 2016

Senior Ministers from Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China met today in Putrajaya, Malaysia to discuss arrangements in the event Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 is not located.

Malaysian Minister of Transport, Dato’ Sri Liow Tiong Lai, chaired the meeting with the Australian Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, the Hon. Darren Chester MP, and the Chinese Minister of Transport, the Hon. Mr. Yang Chuantang.

Ministers took the opportunity to reflect on the enormous sense of grief felt by so many people following the tragic disappearance of MH370 and again acknowledged and expressed their gratitude to the many nations of the world that had provided expertise and other assistance over the subsequent almost two and a half years.

Ministers were provided with an update on the status of the underwater search and the Annex 13 investigation.

Attention was particularly focused on delays to the search as a result of damaged equipment and recent poor weather, as well as discussion about the discovery of aircraft debris and what it meant in relation to search efforts and the investigation

While acknowledging the significance of the debris, Ministers noted that to date, none of it had provided information that positively identified the precise location of the aircraft.

With less than 10,000 square kilometres of the high priority search area remaining to be searched, Ministers acknowledged that despite the best efforts of all involved, the likelihood of finding the aircraft is fading.

Ministers agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would not end, but be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

The suspension does not mean the termination of the search. Ministers reiterated that the aspiration to locate MH370 has not been abandoned. Should credible new information emerge which can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given in determining next steps.

https://youtu.be/5coLPM9yv-k

Source: JACCmh370.gov.my pfd


Minister’s Statement at Media Conference, MH370 Ministerial Tripartite Meeting, Malaysia

(Check against delivery)

22072016-Minister's Statement at Media Conference, MH370 Ministerial Tripartite Meeting, Malaysia

Minister’s Statement at Media Conference, MH370 Ministerial Tripartite Meeting, Malaysia

Thank you Minister Liow.

I would like to thank you and Minister Yang, for our productive discussions and the cooperative manner in which you have approached the complex issues that we have discussed today.

Today’s announcement is very significant not only for our three countries, but more importantly for the family and friends of those on board the aircraft. I take this opportunity to honour the memory of the passengers and crew on board MH370 and acknowledge the enormous loss felt by their loved ones.

The search for MH370 is currently ongoing. At this very moment vessels are in the search area carrying out their challenging work and we remain hopeful the aircraft will be located.

However, should this not occur, we have today agreed to suspend the search at the completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.

This decision was not taken lightly nor without sadness and I want to emphasise that our work is continuing in analysing data, inspecting debris and considering all new information.

However, in the absence of credible new evidence to assist in identifying the specific location of the aircraft, a further search is not currently viable. We have been mindful that any future search needs to have a high likelihood of success to justify raising the hopes of family and friends.

I want to impress upon the families the enormous task that has been undertaken over the last two and a half years and assure them that every effort has been made to locate the aircraft.

We have used the best science available, cutting edge technology, as well as highly skilled professionals who are the best in their field.

I have been overwhelmed by the commitment and dedication shown by the hundreds of people involved in this unprecedented challenge.

I want to reassure family and friends: we are all on the same team, we all want to find answers to the questions about what happened to MH370 and we all want to locate the aircraft.

I would like to make particular mention of the crews on the ships that have continued to work in extreme weather conditions in one of the most inhospitable areas in the world, in an attempt to provide answers.

I also commend all those involved on land, planning the search, analysing data and coordinating search efforts. Their tireless work has continued to improve our knowledge of the search area and is critical in our efforts to find the aircraft.

I note media commentary regarding the identification of the priority search area and offer the following comment:

Everyone is entitled to an opinion but I won’t be second guessing the experts.

We have relied on expert analysis of the facts we have to work on and made decisions to search in the ‘most probable’ location for MH370

This decision was based on what we know from the last satellite communications with the aircraft. This information shows the aircraft was in a high rate of descent, so we believe the aircraft will be located somewhere near what is known as the 7th arc.

We remain hopeful that we will still locate the aircraft in the remaining priority area, but if we don’t I hope that new information will come to light and that the aircraft will be located.

minister.infrastructure.gov.au

Also read: Media Release 22 July 2016 MH370 Ministerial Tripartite Meeting

https://youtu.be/4kh_IjxBI74


Watch back: Sky’s Tom Rayner was live in Malaysia getting reactions to the decision to ‘suspend’ – but not ‘terminate’ – the hunt for ‪#‎MH370‬ if the plane isn’t found in the current search area

https://www.facebook.com/skynews/videos/1404385322909394/


Thursday 21 July 2016

Today the relatives’ campaign group Voice370, are speaking out ahead of a meeting of ministers from Australia, Malaysia and China tomorrow, in which the 3 countries coordinating search efforts are likely to indicate whether the operations off the coast of Australia will continue once the current search area has been completed.

Grace Nathan, who’s mother, Ann Daisy, was on flight MH370, is now a leading member of the Voice370 group representing relatives of the passengers.

With 110,000 sq km of the 120,000 sq km sea-bed search now complete, the group are desperately urging ministers of Malaysia, China and Australia to commit to broadening rather than ending the search for the missing plane.

Interview with Grace Nathan from the relatives’ campaign group Voice370.

https://www.facebook.com/skynews/videos/1403603446320915/

Watch back: Sky’s Tom Rayner was live in Kuala Lumpar ahead of a key meeting to determine whether the search for missing flight MH370 will continue >> Link

https://twitter.com/SumishaCNA/status/756085911503253504

https://twitter.com/SumishaCNA/status/756086461137498117


Wednesday 20 July 2016

Four new possible debris items found by Blaine Gibson at Antsiraka Beach, Cape Antsiraka, Madagascar 

Mr Blaine Gibson, who found the five pieces of possible plane debris and possible personal effects on the island of st Marie (Nosy Baroha) Madagascar last month, has found four new pieces of possible plane debris and more possible personal effects, this time at the Antsiraka beach of Cape Antsiraka at the main land of Madagascar. 

In February 2016 mr Blaine Gibson found the horizontal stabilizer, containing the words ‘No Step’ in Mozambique, which was confirmed by authorities as “almost certainly”coming from MH370.   

Antsiraka Beach Madagascar – Potential MH370 aircraft debris – By Blaine Alan Gibson (20 July 2016)

This article and these photos are copyrighted and may not be reproduced without the express consent of the author. Mr Blaine Alan Gibson ©

“I went exactly where David Griffin from CSIRO said to go next, behind Isle Ste. Marie (Nosy Boraha) to the Bay of Tintingue on the main island of Madagascar”. “I and my friend Rija Ravokatra asked local fishermen where things tend to wash ashore from the open ocean. There is a peninsula that juts out into the passage to Cape Antsiraka, only 7 kilometers from Isle Ste. Marie, only 13 kilometers from Riake Beach. That’s where the locals said to go”.

Antsiraka Beach is about 17 kilometers long from the main road at the beginning of the peninsula to the cape at the end. The beach on the south side is exposed to more wind and bigger waves. Most of the debris washes ashore at Cape Antsiraka itself, and on the south side of the peninsula.

“We combed the beach ourselves and found one piece of aircraft debris, a hexagonal rubber torque coupling seal. “I number it 6, to follow the five pieces of debris I found on Riake Beach only about 8 miles away”, mr Gibson explains. “We showed pictures of debris to local people and asked if they had found any, and over the next two days different people brought us the remaining three pieces”:

Number 6

# 6 (hexagonal torque coupling seal)  June 2016. This piece is made of black rubber 7.25 inches across from longest point to point, and 2.25 inches thick. Each of the six sides is 4.5 ” long. The center hole is 3 inches in diameter. The small holes are .875 ” diameter. There are small remains of rusted metal in some of the small holes. Written on it in raised black thin letters are “PAULSTRA” and ” STRAFLEX”. Also ” …TE” and “… DG” with previous letters illegible. There is no sign of burning or melting on it.

Number 7

# 7 (grey paint /black carbon fibre)  June 2016: This piece is fractured on all sides except part of one. The piece is 35 inches long at the longest, 15″ at the highest. The intact seam is 22.5 ” long. The honeycomb is 2 inches thick and has no apparent metal in it. The honeycomb has the same hexagonal pattern found in other Boeing 777 honeycomb. The outside has partly the same grey paint as on other 370 debris. The carbon fibre is underneath and exposed where the grey painted panel has broken away. Underneath is the same white textured cover found on other 777 debris.

Number 8

# 8 (one hole honeycomb) – June 2016. This piece has no metal or paint on it. The brown hexagonal honeycomb is sandwiched between two lighter brown plates of plastic fibre composite. The piece is 13″ by 10″ at the longest. The honeycomb is .375 ” thick. It has one natural hole one half inch in diameter, one quarter inch from the intact edge.

Number 9

# 9 (cabin honeycomb) Antsiraka Beach southeast of the cape. June 2016
This piece was crushed. It measures 14″ by 12″ at the longest, and has no intact edge. It has the same hexagonal brown honeycomb, which is 1 ” thick. On one side it has white paint peeling away with the identical pattern to that found on the Rodrigues 370 debris, which appears both on the closet door and the bulkhead separating business from economy class. The back has white textured paint peeling away but with no pattern. There is one small natural hole on the back .375″ in diameter, and possibly the remains of another hole 4.5″ away.

There is no evidence of burning or melting or charring on any of these pieces of Antsiraka Beach debris, as there was also none on the Riake Beach debris. If all are confirmed to be from a Boeing 777 or MH 370, together with the five from Riake Beach, that would total nine pieces of debris from two beaches within eight miles of one another.

I also found some possible personal effects on Antsiraka Beach. I have sent pictures to 370 family members and Aircrash Support Group Australia (ASGA) for possible identification. It is then up to them when, how, and where to share and publish them.

19 July 2016 Handover of debris to DCA

Blaine Gibson officially handing over some debris items to Dato’ Sri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman Director General of the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation, and Datuk Kok Soo Chon, the investigator-in-charge of the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370 at the DCA in Kuala Lumpur, 19 July 2016. Image: Blaine Alan Gibson ©

As required, I have turned these four additional pieces of debris, and possible personal effects, over to appropriate authorities in Madagascar and Malaysia. I have handed over three pieces to the Malaysia Department of Civil Aviation, Annex 13 investigation team in Kuala Lumpur. One piece of debris was large, so my friend Rija turned it over to Madagascar BEAC, where it joins the Riake five for the first time since that fateful night.

The personal effects I brought to Malaysia are currently under investigation by a professional team of police investgators. They have photographed them, and promised to make them available to family members for possible identification. The personal effects still in Madagascar have joined those from Riake Beach, and are in safekeeping at BEAC awaiting pickup.

Unfortunately Malaysia still has not picked up the five pieces of probable MH 370 debris and possible personal effects I found on Riake Beach a month ago. They remain in the good hands of Madagascar authorities awaiting Malaysia to collect them and investigate. Madagascar has neither the responsibility not capacity to investigate and make any determination regarding the aircraft debris and possible personal effects, has not done so, and awaits Malaysia to pick them up or give instructions on how to deliver them. The number of aircraft debris pieces in Madagascar awaiting collection is now up to six, and the number of personal effects has increased. I hope that Malaysia will pick them up soon so that the Annex 13 investigation team may fulfil its duty, and so that the police may proceed with a complete investigation. At the official handover July 19 I was assured that they will.

I have followed the law and all proper procedures. I have found up to 10 pieces of Malaysia flight 370, and so have other concerned citizens. Unfortunately the official search has found none. I hope these nine new pieces of debris can provide clues as to how MH 370 crashed and where. And maybe this can begin to lead to giving the families of those on board the long overdue answers they deserve.

I could not possibly have found up to nine pieces of aircraft debris in Madagascar without the help of my friend of six years, Rija Ravokatra. And we could not have done it without help from my friends.

I and Arthur Blackwell told David Griffin from CSIRO about the five pieces of debris I found on Riake Beach and asked him where to go next. He replied to go behind Nosy Boraha to the Bay of Tintingue so I did. Then Arthur told me to go to the south side of anything there that juts out into the sea, which is exactly where all four were found, on the south side of Cape Antsiraka. I thank and credit both David Griffin from CSIRO and Dr. Chari Pattiaratchi from University of Western Australia for advising me that the east coast of Madagascar is the most likely place to find debris.

I could not possibly have found up to 10 pieces of MH 370 debris without the help of the following concerned private citizen volunteers from my Facebook Group:

Sheryl Keen from Aircrash Support Group Australia for arranging my trip to Australia last year and arranging my meetings with ATSB and JACC and Dr. Chari Pattiaratchi, and her tireless efforts and support over the last year. And, in totally random order:
– Juanda Ismail ,  Kaye Russell , Yvonne Harrison ,  Jean Feno Migliore , Chris Mills , Lori Ann Maria Fehnel , Arthur Blackwell

All have supported me 24/7 around the world in all time zones in all areas…from aviation and technical support, research, 370 history, technological ability, teaching me what aircraft parts look like, organizing and administering discussion groups, and many more. At the same time they faithfully covered my back against personal attacks from the online army of armchair assassins, an alliance of trolls, troglodytes, and theoreticians determined to obstruct any objective attempt to find the truth….other than their own. I believe that eventually truth and justice will triumph, but it has already taken much longer than it should.

Most of all, I want to thank all the family members of all those on board who have given me the inspiration, resolve, and strength to continue. This is all about you. Search On !!!

This article and these photos are copyrighted and may not be reproduced without the express consent of the author. Mr Blaine Alan Gibson ©

Pictures of the Potentional Personal Effects can be found here: More Personal Effects and Potential Aircraft Debris Found in Madagascar – ASGA


Wednesday 20 July 2016

MH370 Operational Search Update

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator is conducting underwater search operations and bathymetry as weather and sea conditions allow and is expected to depart the search area late tonight.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is currently on weather stand by and will conduct underwater search operations as weather and sea conditions allow.
  • A piece of aircraft debris found on Pemba Island, just off the coast of Tanzania, in late June has been transported to Australia for examination. Malaysia and Australia have worked with Tanzanian officials to assume responsibility for the item, believed to be an outboard wing flap. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau is working with Malaysian investigators to ascertain whether it is from a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777.

Malaysian and Australian investigators examine the piece of aircraft debris found on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania

Malaysian and Australian investigators examine the piece of aircraft debris found on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania

Malaysian and Australian investigators examine the piece of aircraft debris found on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania

Malaysian and Australian investigators examine the piece of aircraft debris found on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania
Source: ATSB

Underwater search operations

Ongoing poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations and resulted in delays to search operations of around 6-8 weeks. Since the onset of poor conditions associated with winter weather, progress has slowed with only a minimal area searched during this time. Marginal weather conditions still allow the use of deep tow equipment provided conditions are such that the equipment can be safely deployed and recovered, however, the autonomous underwater vehicle, which is used to survey some of the most difficult underwater terrain in the search area that cannot be searched effectively using the deep tow sonar, can only be launched in the calmer conditions of spring and summer.

In the event of further poor weather, or delays as a result of unforeseeable problems such as equipment failure or crew incapacity, searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area may continue well beyond the winter months.

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to improve over the coming days, which should allow search activities to recommence.


Wednesday 20 July 2016

Ministers to meet to discuss MH370

MEDIA RELEASE
DC077/2016

20 July 2016

20 July 2016 Ministers Meet to discuss MH370

Media Release 20 July 2016

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester will meet with counterparts from Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China later this week to discuss the way forward in the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

The Ministerial Tripartite Meeting will be held on Friday in the Malaysian federal administrative centre of Putrajaya. Malaysian Minister of Transport, Dato’ Sri Liow Tiong Lai will host the meeting which will also be attended by the Minister of Transport from the People’s Republic of China, Mr Yang Chuantang.

“I’m looking forward to meeting with our international partners in the search for MH370. The search has been unprecedented in both size and scale, conducted in some of the world’s most isolated waters and at times in extremely challenging weather,” Mr Chester said.

“The meeting will provide an opportunity to reflect on achievements to date and discuss next steps as we near completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.”

The Governments of Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China agreed in April 2015 that should the aircraft not be located within the 120,000 square kilometre search area and in the absence of any new credible evidence the search area would not be extended.

https://twitter.com/DarrenChesterMP/status/756008257710272512


Tuesday 19 July 2016

Madagascar debris and potential personal effects handed over to DCA 

19 july 2016 handover

Blaine Gibson, the man who has been helping in the search for flight MH370, handed over debris and personal effects he found in Madagascar to the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) on Tuesday.

The 59-year-old American said the debris and personal effects could have come from the missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 plane.

The personal effectspersonal effects included handbags and cabin-sized luggage.

“There were no ID or names to tie them to the plane. Only inspection and recognition by family members or analysis of security videos can determine, ” he told The Star Online on Tuesday.

DCA director-general Datuk Seri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman confirmed that Gibson handed over the items and said they would investigate them.

19 July 2016 Handover of debris to DCA

Blaine Gibson officially handing over some debris items to Dato’ Sri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman Director General of the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation, and Datuk Kok Soo Chon, the investigator-in-charge of the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370 at the DCA in Kuala Lumpur, 19 July 2016. Image: Blaine Alan Gibson ©

In March, mr Gibson found a piece of debris that was later confirmed to be from a Boeing 777 along the coast of Mozambique.

Mr Gibson has travelled to Australia, Thailand, Myanmar, Maldives, Mauritius, Reunion Island, Mozambique and Madagascar to find clues about the missing plane.

He is in Kuala Lumpur to attend the 5th International Search and Rescue conference and exhibition.

Flight MH370 with 239 people on board disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014. The Boeing 777 plane is believed to have ended in the southern Indian Ocean.

Source: TheStar

https://www.facebook.com/ChannelNewsAsia/videos/10153778071012934/

ChannelNewsAsia


Tuesday 19 July 2016

Joint Media Release

Further aircraft debris examined as part of MH370 investigation

19 July 2016 Joint Media Release

Malaysia and Australia have worked with Tanzanian officials  to assume responsibility for the wing flap. Technical specialists from the ATSB are working with Malaysian investigators to  determine if it is from the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777, MH370.

The large piece of what is likely to be a wing flap was found by locals on Pemba Island, just off the coast of Tanzania, Africa on 23 June 2016.

To date, the ATSB has examined four pieces of debris on behalf of Malaysia and determined them to be almost certainly from MH370. This is in addition to the flaperon found on La Reunion Island on 29 July 2015 and positively identified by French officials as originating from flight MH370.

Ministers frorn Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China will meet on 21-22 July 2016 to discuss a range of matters related to the search for the rnissing Malaysia Airlines flight.

Source: ATSB


Monday 18 July 2016

Wing part to be examined in relation to the disappearance of MH370 

MEDIA RELEASE
DC075/2016
18 July 2016

18 July 2016 Media release examination of wing part

18 July 2016 Media Release

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester today confirmed that Australian Safety Transport Bureau (ATSB) has received a wing part suspected to be from MH370.

The wing part found on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania has arrived in Australia and is currently being examined by experts from Malaysia and Australia at the laboratories of the ATSB in Canberra.

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the 120,000 square kilometre search zone in the southern Indian Ocean has been completed.

More information about the search can be found on the Joint Agency Coordination Centre website at jacc.gov.au.


Monday 18 July 2016

Three-nation meeting on MH370 search postponed

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai announced that the tripartite ministerial meeting between Australia, China and Malaysia on the missing MH370 plane has been postponed.

https://youtu.be/u-z8iw_0dcE


Saturday 15 July 2016

Tanzania Debris has been officially handed over to Malaysian and Australian officials

https://youtu.be/msXHjpt6WDo

TANZANIA has officially handed over to the governments of Malaysia and Australia an aircraft wing suspected to be part of the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 which disappeared on March 8, 2014 with 239 people onboard when travelling from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to Beijing in China.

plana+pic

Tanzania hands over suspected piece of missing Malaysia plane

The Permanent Secretary (PS) in the Ministry of Works, Transport and Communications, Dr Leonard Chamuriho, flanked by the Director General of Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA), Mr Hamza Johari, handed over the wreckage to officials from Malaysia and Australia in Dar es Salaam yesterday.

“This is the largest piece out of the ten parts which have been recovered during the search operation so far. This part will enable the investigations to go forward,” a senior Air Accident Investigator in Malaysia’s Ministry of Transport, Mr Aslam Khan, noted.

He added; “We appreciate the tremendous efforts by the government and people of Tanzania in recovering the fragment. I call upon other Tanzanians to inform authorities when they spot any debris suspected to be from the missing plane along the Indian Ocean Coast.”

The wreckage will be airlifted to a laboratory in Australia where experts will try to solve the jigsaw puzzle by fitting together the pieces from the missing aircraft. The Australian High Commissioner in East Africa, Mr John Feakes, noted though that it was too early to assess the implication of the piece in the ongoing investigations.

“It is, however, worth to note that the recovery of the wreckage will provide comfort to families of passengers of the missing plane,” the envoy, whose country is leading the search operations, remarked.

Dr Chamuriho explained that the remains were discovered by fishermen in Kojani, Pemba Island, who later informed authorities and the part was transported to Dar es Salaam.

“We have thus handed over the wing as part of our international obligation to enable investigations on the missing plane to continue,” he explained. So far, suspected parts of the Boeing 777-200ER aircraft have been discovered in Madagascar, Reunion Island and Mozambique in the Indian Ocean.

When it disappeared, the plane had 227 passengers from 13 countries and 12 crew members, all of whom were Malaysians. The DG of TCAA, Mr Hamza Johari, said preliminary examination has indicated that the wreckage is a right wing of a large aircraft, particularly Boeing 777. “Since we have not had a recent accident involving such a big plane and we presumed it was from the missing Malaysia Airlines, we thus contacted our counterparts in Malaysia for further investigations,” he explained.

Sources: Dailynews.co.tz, TheCitizen.co.tz

https://twitter.com/AusHCKenya/status/753881635452485632

John Feakes is Australia’s High Commissioner to Kenya and East Africa. He has tweeted these photographs from Tanzania of the handover of the potential MH370 debris to Malaysia today where he was present.

Sources:  DailyNews.co.tz, TanzaniaToday

Also Read:  MH370 relatives’ anger at ‘ignored’ debris


Wednesday 13 July 2016

Operational Search Update – 13 July 2016

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Discovery has undergone maintenance in Fremantle and is en route to the search area.
  • Fugro Equatoris conducting underwater search operations and bathymetry as weather and sea conditions allow.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is currently on weather stand by and will conduct underwater search operations as weather and sea conditions allow.

Underwater search operations

Ongoing poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations and resulted in delays to search operations of around 6-8 weeks. Since the onset of poor conditions associated with winter weather, progress has slowed with only a minimal area searched during this time. Marginal weather conditions still allow the use of deep tow equipment provided conditions are such that the equipment can be safely deployed and recovered, however, the autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) which is used to survey some of the most difficult portions of the search area such as the underwater canyon areas that cannot be searched effectively using the deep tow sonar, can only be launched in the calmer conditions of spring and summer.

In the event of further poor weather, or delays as a result of unforeseeable problems such as equipment failure or crew incapacity, searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area may continue well beyond the winter months.

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be very poor with gale to storm force winds expected over the coming week which will likely cause disruption to search operations.

Wednesday 6 July 2016

Operational Search Update – 6 July 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/750557341213421568

This operational report has been developed to provide regular updates on the progress of the search effort for MH370. Our work will continue to be thorough and methodical, so sometimes weekly progress may seem slow. Please be assured that work is continuing and is aimed at finding MH370 as quickly as possible.

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Discovery resupplied in Fremantle and was en route to the search area, however an engineering issue has required the vessel to return to port for maintenance.
  • Fugro Equator continues to conduct underwater search operations as weather and sea conditions allow.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is en route to the search area, after returning an injured crew member to Fremantle.  The vessel is expected to arrive in the search area early on 6 July.

Underwater search operations

Ongoing poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations and resulted in delays to search operations of around 6-8 weeks.  Since the onset of poor conditions associated with winter weather, progress has slowed with only a minimal area searched during this time.  Marginal weather conditions still allow the use of deep tow equipment provided conditions are such that the equipment can be safely deployed and recovered. The autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) which is used to survey some of the most difficult portions of the search area such as the underwater canyon areas that cannot be searched effectively using the deep tow sonar, can only be launched in the calmer conditions of spring and summer.

In the event of further poor weather, or delays as a result of unforeseeable problems such as equipment failure or crew incapacity, searching the entire 120,000 square kilometre search area may continue well beyond the winter months.

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.  In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched.  In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be variable over the coming week and search operations may again be disrupted.


Friday 1 July 2016

July 19 Ministerial Tripartite Meeting On MH370 – Liow

https://youtu.be/1ZK2pJDvckU

SEPANG,  July 1 (Bernama) — An Australia, China and Malaysia ministerial meeting is to be held on July 19 in Kuala Lumpur to discuss the way forward in the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 that has been missing since March 2014.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said today the transport ministers of the three countries would attend the tripartite meeting.

“We (Australia, China and Malaysia) will not call off for the search. We are committed to complete the 120,000 sq km search. So far, we have completed 107,000 sq km.

“We will make an announcement on the way forward,” he told reporters after launching the iWalk walkalators at the KL International Airport 2 (KLIA2) here.

Liow said bad weather had hampered the search but it would resume in October when the situation improved.

Flight MH370 crashed on March 8, 2014, when flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board.

Liow also welcomed the appointment of Peter Bellew as Malaysia Airlines Bhd new group managing director and chief executive officer.

He said Bellew was familiar with the airline as he had been assisting his predecessor Christoph Mueller.

“It is a very smooth succession. I am very confident that MAB will be able to make a turnaround. We wish him all the best,” he said.

On Thursday, MAB named Bellew to succeed Mueller who has resigned and will go on leave and steps down from the Malaysia Airlines board on Friday.

Bellew has over 20 years of experience in the aviation industry. He has been a member of Malaysia Airlines’ senior management team since Sept 1 last year.

Sources: Bernama, TheStar

Friday 1 July 2016

Suspected MH370 debris to be analysed in Tanzania

ZANZIBAR, July 1 — Aircraft debris found off the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar was handed over to the authorities today for analysis to determine if it is from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

Cl9Dp0YVYAA2W0mFishermen who found the suspected wing fragment last month refused to hand it over until they were given two million Tanzanian shillings (RM3,613) as a reward from aviation officials.

“The debris will be ferried… to Dar es Salaam on Monday as we wait for experts from Malaysia to investigate whether it is part of the lost airline,” said Valley Chamulungu of the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority.

Flight MH370 disappeared in March 2013 between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing with 239 passengers onboard. The plane has not yet been located but confirmed or suspected debris has been found across the Indian Ocean, including in Reunion, Madagascar, Mozambique and South Africa. — AFP

Source: TheMalayOnline


Friday 1 July 2016 

ATSB Welcomes new chief commissioner

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/748694617986478080


Wednesday 29 June 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/748021572682801152

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Equator continues to conduct underwater search operations, as the weather and sea conditions allow.
  • Fugro Discovery is en route to Fremantle to conduct scheduled resupply and maintenance before returning to the search.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 arrived in Fremantle on 22 June for scheduled resupply, and departed for the search area on 26 June.  Two days into the voyage a crew member sustained an injury.  Although not life-threatening, the decision has been made to return to port to ensure the best possible medical attention can be provided.

Underwater search operations

Recent poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations.  It is now anticipated it may take until around August to complete the 120,000 square kilometres, but this will be influenced by weather conditions over the coming months.

More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.  In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.


Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched.  In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be poor over the coming week and search operations may again be disrupted.


Sunday 26 June 2016

Tanzania Debris identified

A compelling case for the large object found in Tanzania being part of the right wing of missing flight MH370 has been published by IG members Mike Exner and Don Thompson.

They conclude that it is the inboard one third of the large right wing flap adjacent to the flaperon recovered from La Réunion Island last July.

https://twitter.com/Airlandseaman/status/747090798328446977

https://twitter.com/Airlandseaman/status/747514149136019456


Saturday 25 June 2016

ASGA outraged at claims made by Liow

Overview Possible Personal Items MH370 - 21 June 2016

Overview of potential personal effects

The Aircrash Support Group Australia (ASGA) is outraged at comments made by Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai claiming that “earlier discoveries of several bags, including one with an angry bird picture, and other items found in Madagascar were not connected to MH370.”

No competent investigatory body has had the opportunity to effectively and efficiently examine the items, nor conduct any form of formal identification of the numerous personal effects retrieved from the beach in Madagascar in early June.

It is a fact that the items still sit in storage in Madagascar awaiting collection by Malaysian Officials.  How can such firm conclusions be drawn from something that has not even been seen?  They can’t.

As a Member State of ICAO, Malaysia has the responsibility and obligation to thoroughly examine these items and ensure that all Next of Kin have the opportunity to do likewise.  Furthermore, should they prove to be from anyone on board flight MH370, Malaysia has the responsibility to ensure they are returned to the Families.

To dismiss these items out of hand, without any examination, is an insult to the Next of Kin, disrespectful to those on board flight MH370, an abomination for the international aviation community, and, could be considered by some as a manipulation of ICAO policies and avoidance of international obligations.

The Aircrash Support Group Australia directly pleads to Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, sincerely and humbly requesting that he immediately review his decision to dismiss these items and make arrangements for their URGENT collection, examination and safe keeping.

The article can be found HERE

Source:  (ASGA)

UPDATE 26 June 2016: Open letter to YB Dato’ Seri Liow Tiong Lai Minister of Transport, Malaysia

https://youtu.be/sxV9GiFwTEg


Friday 24 June 2016

UPDATE: More detailed images of the plane debris found at Pemba, Tanzania, posted to JamiiForums

BOLT bearing part No VBF No 113W3004-10

image (2) bw2

Bolt bearing part number 113W3004-10, is used on Boeing Aircraft.

The bolt part VBF No 113W3004-10 is used on Boeing B777-200 series and B777-300 series aircraft 

The VBF 113W3004-10 bolt was not manufactured by Boeing Aircraft as appears in online catalogs, but by a French company V.B.F. Sas Screws And Bolts For Aerospace Engineering France,  which is no longer in business. VBF was aquired by Textron until 2003 and no longer exists.

.


Friday 24 June 2016

Media Release by Darren Chester MP, Minister of Infrastructure and Transport Australia

Media Release: A piece of aircraft debris has been found on Pemba Island, just off the coast of Tanzania. 

A piece of aircraft debris has been found at Pemba just off the coast of Tanzania

Media Release by Darren Chester MP, Minister of Infrastructure and Transport Australia

A piece of aircraft debris has been found on Pemba Island, just off the coast of Tanzania.

The ATSB is seeking further information on the debris to ascertain whether it was from the Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777, MH370.

Officials from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China met on 20–21 June 2016 to discuss a range of matters related to the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight.

Discussions were productive and will allow each country to brief their respective Minister ahead of a Ministerial Tripartite Meeting proposed for late July.

https://twitter.com/DarrenChesterMP/status/746199145988292608


Thursday 23 June 2016

Drift modelling by Professor Charitha Pattiaratchi from the University of WA

Drift modelling by Professor Charitha Pattiaratchi from the University of WA shows the likelihood of MH370 debris turning up off Tanzania based on the current search site. Picture: Supplied Source: Supplied

If the part of an aircraft wing found at Pemba, Tanzania  is confirmed as being from MH370, it will be the furtherest north debris has been found to date.

Other items have been discovered on Reunion Island, Mauritius, Mozambique and South Africa. Debris found in Madagascar this month is still awaiting retrieval by Malaysia for examination.

Drift modelling by Professor Charitha Pattiaratchi from the University of WA shows the likelihood of MH370 debris turning up off Tanzania based on the current search site. 

Drift modelling undertaken by University of Western Australia oceanographer Charitha Pattiaratchi shows it is possible debris from MH370 could have been carried as far as Pemba Island.

Professor Pattiaratchi said it was more likely that debris would come up on an island than a beach “because an island collects things”.

He said it was completely plausible that a section of wing from MH370 had now washed up on Pemba Island, from the southern Indian Ocean.

“It’s taken that time to get there,” said Prof Pattiaratchi.

“If people had been looking 12 months ago they wouldn’t have found anything.”

The section could prove the most valuable debris to date in terms of shedding more light on MH370’s final moments.

Source: News.com.au


Thursday 23 June 2016

Possible wing part found in sea at Kojani, Kojana Island, Pemba, Tanzania

A big aircraft wing has been found today by locals at the Indian Ocean area of Kojani Island, Pemba. Its not known what company the aircraft belongs to.

Kojani, north Pemba Island, Tanzania

Kojani, (North) Pemba Island, Tanzania

A section that is believed to be the remains of an aircraft has been discovered in the Indian ocean on the coast of Kojani Island, Pemba.

The aircraft wing that was found in the ocean at the small island of Kojani (Pemba, Zanzibar) has set of a great debate among the locals of this island, many of them believing that it is the wing of the Malaysian plane that was lost without trace. An airplane of Malaysian airlines, flight MH370 was lost on March 8 2014 and has never been seen until today.

Although its unknown what plane these remains belong to, air transport experts have begun the first steps of investigations into these airplane parts.

Emerging news says that security officials have already begun in-depth investigations of this wing and it should not be long before we get fuller explanations from the relevant authorities.

Source JamiiForums (Translation Swahili-English), Zanzibar Facebook (Translation)

https://twitter.com/JamiiForums/status/746003929981394944


Wednesday 22 June 2016

Operational Search Update: Investigators analysis shows Kangaroo island debris is not from MH370 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/745482423123607557

Key developments this week

  • A prolonged period of extreme winter weather conditions has brought rough seas and strong winds to the search area in recent weeks, severely impacting search operations.
  • Fugro Discovery is conducting underwater search operations, as weather and sea conditions permit.  The vessel sustained some damage to a shaft bearing and the tow cable, causing delays in search operations as repairs are being made.
  • Fugro Equator arrived at the search area on 21 June, after conducting resupply in Fremantle. The vessel is tasked to conduct underwater search operations, as the weather and sea conditions allow.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 is currently in transit to Fremantle for scheduled resupply.

Discovery of further debris

On 9 June 2016, the ATSB was advised of possible aircraft debris located on Kangaroo Island in South Australia.  The ATSB recovered the part and examined it, in conjunction with Malaysian authorities and the aircraft manufacturer, Boeing. Information received from the manufacturer indicates that the item is not consistent with the manufacturing specifications of a Boeing commercial aircraft.  As such, the ATSB has assessed that the item is not related to the safety investigation or on-going search for MH370.

Underwater search operations

Recent poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations.  It is now anticipated it may take until around August to complete the 120,000 square kilometres, but this will be influenced by weather conditions over the coming months.

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.  In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Officials from Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China met on 20-21 June 2016 to discuss a range of matters related to the underwater search.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched.  In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be marginal over the coming week and search operations may again be disrupted.


Tuesday 21 June 2016 

UPDATE: Debris found in La Reunion this moring NOT from a plane 

According to the gendarmerie for air transport (gendarmerie des transports aériens (BGTA), the debris found on Tuesday morning on the shore of Rivière des Roches, Saint-Benoit (River Rocks, St. Benedict) La Reunion does not belong to a plane.

https://twitter.com/Linfore/status/745219571720794112

https://twitter.com/a_forestier/status/745220252976324608

Possible plane debris found in La Reunion

A possible new piece of plane debris found on Tuesday 21 June 2016.
Simon Dary made the discovery on the shore of the Rivière des Roches, Saint-Benoit (River Rocks, St. Benedict) La Reunion.

CldL-gIUYAE3zwlOn Tuesday around 7:00 Simon Dary spotted a “white mass” on the pebble beach. After approaching, he quickly observed the object measuring about a meter long with barnacles attached. The man believes it could be an aircraft door. He alerted the police immediately after his discovery. The debris in question has been recovered after pictures were taken.

UPDATE: The gendarmerie for air transport has examined the debris today and concluded that the piece does not come from a plane.

Sources:  Línfo.re, La1ere.francetv.info.fr

https://youtu.be/5nZ1UCLufWQ


Tuesday 21 June 2016

Graphical overview of potential MH370 personal effects found by Blaine Gibson

https://twitter.com/Bookofresearch/status/745202533237428224


Tuesday 21 June 2016

Outcome of tripartite talks taken to ministerial level

MOTPUTRAJAYA: The outcome of special tripartite talks at the officials’ level on MH370 held for two days will be brought to the ministerial level between the three parties for a decision to be made, said Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Ab Aziz Kaprawi.

He said the ministerial talks on the Malaysia Airlines aircraft are expected to be held in Malaysia next month. “The search is now more than 90 per cent and is expected to end this month.

However, it may be extended because the sea is a little choppy.

“Australia has informed that they need a bit more time to complete the search area of 120,000 square kilometres,” he told reporters after the break-of-fast with the media  yesterday.

A special tripartite meeting on MH370 involving officials from Australia, China and Malaysia held at the Transport Ministry  will end today.

The objective of the meeting was to discuss the direction of future operations to search for MH370 and to study in detail the important issues including the discovery of aircraft fragments recently.

Malaysia is represented by the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) director-general Datuk Seri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), which led the search had initially expected to complete it in a 120,000-sq kilometre area by the end of this month.

MH370 which was carrying 239 passengers and crew disappeared from the radar screen while en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur on March 8, 2014. The flight of ill fated aircraft was reported to have ended in the southern Indian Ocean. — Bernama


Monday 20 June 2016

Photos of possible personal items released 

Campaigners for families of those on board missing flight MH370 have released photographs of personal items that washed up on a Madagascar beach, hoping to identify them.

Some 20 items found include purses, backpacks, part of a laptop case inscribed with the letters “MENSA”, a logic camera case, a phone case, soles of shoes, a trim of a hat, ao..

Photographs of potential MH370 personal effects found (pptx file) courtesy of Blaine Gibson

Mr. Blaine Alan Gibson shared with family members of passengers on MH370, photographs of some of the items found washed ashore on the coast of Madagascar where he was searching for potential MH370 debris recently.  

He has been careful to point out that these may well have nothing to do with the personal effects of passengers on MH370. Nonetheless, since they were all found in Riake Beach, Isle Ste. Marie, (Nosy Boraha), Madagascar, the same 18 km. long beach where he found debris that is under investigation as potential debris from 9M-MRO, there is the possibility that these items may belong to passengers on MH370.

Attempts have been made to reach family members and invite them to view the pictures and check if there is a positive identification by any of them.

To that endeavor, these pictures are now being made public and the items are being handed to the authorities for further action.

To view the images click HERE 

Source: Aircrash Support Group Australia


The items were found by US lawyer Blaine Gibson, who concedes they may be irrelevant in the hunt for MH370.

“They may have just fallen off a ship,” Mr Gibson told the BBC.

“Still, I found them on the same 18km (11-mile) stretch of beach where I found suspected aircraft parts [of the Malaysia Airlines jet] so it is important that they are investigated properly.”

MH370 was flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in March 2014 and is presumed to have crashed into the southern Indian Ocean after veering off course.

The personal items found include a white, black and red “Angry Bird” purse, a tartan handbag and part of a black laptop case inscribed with the letters “MENSA”.

Île Sainte-Marie (Nosy Boraha) NE Madagascar

Riake Beach, Nosy Boraha (Île Sainte-Marie) NE Madagascar

Mr Gibson, who has has funded his own search for MH370 debris in east Africa, found them earlier in June on Riake beach, on the island of Nosy Boraha in north-east Madagascar.

As well as the personal items, he also found two pieces of debris that may be from the aircraft itself.

Mr Gibson  was tipped by UWA oceanographer, Dr Pattiaratchi,  about where debris would most likely wash up.

He recently found three pieces of debris in that area, having already found another piece of debris in Mozambique in March, which Australian investigators believe is almost certainly part of the missing plane.

Campaigners have released the images on the Aircrash Support Group Australia website to ascertain whether they may have belonged to MH370 passengers.

The group’s chair, Sheryl Keen, said the images were being posted “to make sure everyone has the right and opportunity to view these items”.

“The nature of aviation investigations [means] usually people don’t get to see the nitty gritty of it. But because these have been found by members of the public we’re able to take this opportunity to display the objects,” Ms Keen said.

Relatives of those on board the plane have expressed frustration at the official investigation into MH370’s disappearance.

KS Narendran said that while none of the personal items found belonged to his wife, MH370 passenger Chandrika Sharma, investigators’ lack of urgency was disconcerting.

“We don’t sense any sense of urgency at any level,” he told the BBC from his home in Chennai.

“So what choice do families have but to pull together and help whoever they can?”

He said the current search does not include the only areas of the world where pieces of the aircraft have actually been washed up – beaches on the Indian ocean, thousands of miles from the official underwater sea search.

Australia, Malaysia and China have nearly completed a search of 120,000 sq km (46,000 sq miles) of the Indian Ocean, using underwater drones and sonar equipment deployed from specialist ships.

All the debris is being examined in Australia by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau and other experts.

But the countries involved have agreed the sea search will end in the next couple of months unless “credible new information” is found.

Sources: Aircrash Support Group Australia website, BBC, Blaine Gibson – Dropbox

https://twitter.com/Bookofresearch/status/744797663162335236


Monday 20 June 2016

Senior aviation officials from Australia, Malaysia and China are meeting in Kuala Lumpur to discuss the future of the search for missing airliner MH370.

The three countries previously agreed that in the absence of credible new information, the search would be wound up once the 120,000 square kilometre zone in the southern Indian Ocean was scoured.

The search is in its final phase, with 15,000 sq km yet to be covered.

AAP

https://twitter.com/MelGohCNA/status/744739181599985665


Saturday 18 June 2016

Special two-day tripartite on MH370 starting Monday

A tripartite meeting on MAS MH370 will be convened on Monday, to deliberate on the next course of action for the vanished jetliner.

Special tripartite on MH370 next weekKUALA LUMPUR: A two-day special tripartite meeting on Malaysia Airlines MH370 will be convened, beginning Monday, to deliberate on the next course of action for the vanished jetliner.

Transport Deputy Minister Datuk Ab Aziz Kaprawi told Bernama today that the highly anticipated meeting would also look in detail, other crucial issues, including the recent discovery of several debris and inputs from aviation experts.The meeting, involving high-level officials from Australia, China and Malaysia is expected to take place at the transport ministry in Putrajaya.

“Top in the agenda of the meeting is on the future direction of the search operation for MH370.

“Only high ranking officials will attend the meeting. Malaysia will be represented by Department of Civil Aviation Director-General Datuk Seri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman,” said Ab Aziz.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) which leads the search in the Indian Ocean, is expected to complete the designated 120,000 sq km of the sea, by month-end.

The Beijing-bound MH370 aircraft with 239 passengers and crew on board disappeared from civilian radar screens on March 8, 2014, about an hour into the scheduled six-hour flight.

Its flight path was believed to have ended in the southern Indian Ocean.


Wednesday 15 June 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/742946469280374784

Key developments this week

  • Winter weather conditions continued to bring rough seas and strong winds to the search area, severely impacting search operations.
  • Fugro Discovery is conducting underwater search operations as weather permits.
  • Fugro Equator departed for Fremantle on 11 June, and arrived in port today to conduct resupply. It is anticipated the vessel will depart for the return voyage to the search area tomorrow.
  • Weather conditions allowed the Dong Hai Jiu 101 to recommence underwater search operations on 13 June.

Discovery of further debris

Further debris, possibly aircraft related, has been found in Madagascar off the east coast of Africa and Kangaroo Island off the coast of South Australia. Arrangements are being made for this debris to be examined to establish if it is related to MH370.

Underwater search operations

Recent poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations. It is now anticipated it may take until around August to complete the 120,000 square kilometres, but this will be influenced by weather conditions over the coming months, which may worsen.

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be marginal over the coming week and search operations may again be disrupted.


Sunday 12 June 2016

Two more pieces of possible plane debris found at Riake beach Madagascar by Blaine Gibson (Makes a total of five)

After traveling the 18 kilometer length of Riake Beach, the same route he traveled on twice before and found three pieces of possible plane debris, Mr Blaine Gibson has found a fourth and a fifth possible plane part at Riake Beach Madagascar.

Riake Beach, Madagascar, debris piece number 4-9

Riake Beach, Madagascar, debris piece number 4. Image: Blaine Gibson ©

The fourth piece  is fractured but has six hi-lock pins left intact. I am convinced it very recently washed ashore, as it was not there before, Mr Gibson said. The heads of the hi-lock pins are 10mm. in diameter, the same as on “No Step”. They are about 12 mm long, the same as on “No Step”, and identical design. They are about 15 mm. from the edge of the seam. The distance between the intact hi-lock pins, measured from the edge of the pinhead to the edge of the one next to it is 2 cm. The distance between the bottom of the pin to the bottom of the pin next to it is 3 cm.

There are 6 intact pins total. The distance between the bottom of the pins and the edge of the seam above them is 1.5 centimeters. Numbers on the pins are not legible now because they are covered with the same grey paint as on the intact surface, however they can be easily read once that paint is removed.

Riake Beach, Madagascar, debris piece number 5-1

Riake Beach, Madagascar, debris piece number 5. Image: Blaine Gibson ©

On the way back we found a fifth piece if debris . It is the same type of plastic fiberglass composite, but is a small fragment that has no paint or distinguishing marks on it.

Since four pieces of the debris, the exception being the monitor case, are devoid of barnacles, my guess is they have washed ashore, back out to sea, and back in …perhaps many times. That is how the ocean works, and slowly the sea is revealing its secrets, Mr Gibson said.

Five pieces of debris including what appears to be the frame of an in-flight entertainment unit have been recovered by self-funded MH370 investigator Blaine Gibson from Riake Beach in Nosy Boraha.

“I have reported and sent pictures of all pieces of debris to ATSB and Malaysian authorities. As required I have handed over all five pieces of debris, and possible personal effects, to the appropriate authorities in Madagascar: Commandant Gervais Damasy, Directeur du BEAC (Bureau d’Enquêtes des Accidents de l’Aviation Civile) They are now in excellent professional hands in Madagascar awaiting Malaysian authorities to pick them up and transport them to Malaysia and Australia for determination, investigation, and analysis”, Mr Gibson said.

“If confirmed from MH370, this is the fartherest north debris has been discovered and the first time that more than one piece has been found on the same beach,” Mr Gibson said .

Source: Mr Blaine Alan Gibson


Saturday 11 June 2016

It is yet to be confirmed if the debris discovered at Kangaroo Island and Madagascar are from MH370. Below is an overview of all debris of interest found so far. Five pieces are confirmed as almost certainly from MH370 and eight pieces are in possession of authorities yet to be a examined for a possible link to MH370.

https://twitter.com/Bookofresearch/status/741596654365741056


Thursday 9 June 2016

Debris found at Kangaroo Island, South Australia

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau will investigate if a piece of debris found washed up on the South Australian coast on Thursday afternoon has links to the missing Malaysian aircraft MH370.

A man who was searching the beach for driftwood discovered the debris, which appears to be from a plane, on the southeastern coast of Kangaroo Island at around 2.40pm ACST.

South Australian police collected the piece of wreckage, slightly larger than a shoebox, and will keep it until the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) picks it up to be examined.

A spokeswoman for the ATSB said the agency is waiting for further information.

“We’ll examine each component as it comes in. At this stage, there is nothing definitive and we’ll follow our normal procedure,” the spokeswoman told Reuters.

“All we know is that there is wreckage.”

It is understood the Civil Aviation Safety Authority has seen a photograph of the piece of debris and believes it could be from a plane, but referred it on to investigators at the ATSB.

Footage broadcast by Seven News on Thursday night showed a fragment of white wreckage which has a black honeycomb symbol and printed words saying, “Caution no step”.

The core of the debris also appears to be reinforced with a honeycomb structure, a technique commonly used in planes.

Samuel Armstrong, who found the piece of debris, told the network he just “stumbled across a piece of what I thought to be aircraft”.

“I thought about planes that had gone down and wondered where it could have come from,” Mr Armstrong said.

“I’ve found fruit along this coastline that’s from overseas, it could’ve been dropped off boats, but yeah, stuff travels a long way.”

Associate Professor Jochen Kaempf, an oceanographer from Flinders University, said wreckage ending up in South Australia was “sort of consistent” with the drift pathways of currents in the southern Indian Ocean, where the search for MH370 is centred.

“The time scale of two years is just right, it could happen during that time scale,” Professor Kaempf said.

Video of the part shows it bears the words “No step” — a phrase that also appeared on the part that Gibson found in Mozambique in February.

It is yet to be confirmed if the debris discovered at Kangaroo Island is from MH370.

http://yahoo7g-a.akamaihd.net/2376984109001/201606/437/2376984109001_4932521668001_4932499402001.mp4

(Video link)

Sources: 7News, 7News, 7News video,  smh.com.au, DailyMail


Thursday 9 June 2016

Three pieces of debris discovered on Monday morning June 6, on the island of Nosy Boraha, northeast of Madagascar.

The businessman Blaine Gibson, who had found a piece of debris in Mozambique has made a new discovery. He found three pieces of debris on Monday morning June 6, on the island of Nosy Boraha, northeast of Madagascar. Investigators will now have to authenticate the debris.

8733879

The crew of “Supplementary investigation” on a beach in Madagascar, near the village of Sahasifotra, Monday, June 6, 2016. (ADDITIONAL SURVEY / francetv INFO)

These remains were found by Blaine Alan Gibson, an American businessman, when he was accompanied by the crew of a France 2 TV show “Complément d’enquête. They were on a long almost deserted beach, located near the village of Sahasifotra, where tons of waste arrive daily from the Indian ocean.

One piece in particular, measuring 77 cm wide and 50 cm long, seemingly made of composite materials, is strongly reminiscent of another piece of debris that was found in February off the coast of Mozambique by Blaine Gibson. It has since been authenticated  as “almost certainty” coming from MH370, by Australian investigators.

8733895

The first remains found Monday, June 6 by the American businessman Blaine Alan Gibson Madagascar, company teams “Further investigation”. (Blaine Alan Gibson / francetv INFO)

“These two fragments are very similar: same paint color, the diameter of the mounting holes is identical and back texture is the same.  I think it is a piece of MH370”  says Alan Blaine Gibson to a reporter from France 2. Two other fragments were also found. A smaller piece with the inscription “FB” and another plastic piece that could be a seat element of the economy which can fit a video screen.

8733949

The second debris recovered Monday, June 6 by the American businessman Blaine Alan Gibson in Madagascar, in the company of “Supplementary investigation” teams. (ADDITIONAL SURVEY / francetv INFO)

8733957

The third remain found Monday, June 6 by the American businessman Blaine Alan Gibson in Madagascar, in the company of “Supplementary investigation” teams.

Contacted by France 2, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), in charge of research for the aircraft, confirmed being interested in these new debris. If this debris were authenticated, it would bring the number to 13 pieces found in the Indian Ocean.

It is yet to be confirmed if the debris discovered at Madagascar are from MH370.

Source: Francetvinfo.fr


Wednesday 8 June 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/740408452363759616

Key developments this week

  • Winter weather conditions continued to bring rough seas and strong winds to the search area, severely impacting search operations.
  • Fugro Discovery was on weather standby until Monday 6 June when it successfully deployed its towfish and is now undertaking search operations for the first time in four weeks.
  • Fugro Equator is undertaking bathymetric survey operations as conditions permit.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 continues to be on weather standby north of the search area.

Underwater search operations

Recent poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations; the last four weeks saw no search operations undertaken. It is now anticipated it may take until around August to complete the 120,000 square kilometres, but this will be influenced by weather conditions over the coming months, which may worsen.

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Weather conditions are forecast to be marginal over the coming week and search operations may again be disrupted.


Wednesday 1 June 2016

First analysis of Mauritius debris by Malaysian experts

https://youtu.be/qPvIJvH6Eck

Malaysian experts are to determine whether the debris found in Gris-Gris and L’ilot Bernache, Mauritius, belong to MH370 flight Malaysia Airlines that disappeared on 8 March 2014.

Dispatched to Mauritius, Muhammad Imran Bin Ismail, Senior Air Accident Investigator of the Malaysian Ministry of Transport says that they must first make advanced analysis to determine whether the parts are from a plane or not.

Muhammad Imran Bin Ismail had a meeting Wednesday morning June 1, with the  the National Coast Guard (NCG). The expertise restarts Friday, June 3 and debris will be sent to Malaysia or Australia for further analysis.

On Tuesday afternoon May 24, the NCG  got possession of a piece of debris measuring 60 × 40 centimeters, suspected to originate from the MH370 flight Malaysia Airlines, found by a coast guard patrolling on the public beach of Gris-Gris .

The discovered piece resembles the one picked up on March 30 by a couple of Reunion tourists on the beach between Var-Brûlé and Gravel in Rodrigues.

Another piece of debris of 80 × 40 centimeters was presented to the NCG by a skipper.The debris was picked up by a French tourist three weeks earlier  on L’ilot Bernache, in north Mauritius.

UPDATE: Debris found on Mauritian shores were examined by a Malaysian expert on Wednesday 1st June “At this stage it is too early to say where they come from ,” said Muhammad Imran of Malaysia’s Transport Ministry.

To confirm that the debris from the flight MH370, we need at least their registration number for identification. For now, the recovered debris have no serial number. Only a part that corresponds to what is used by Malaysian Airlines .

The materials used on aircraft are common. Ditto for serial numbers. We need facts.Without the facts and evidence, we can not confirm 100%. But it’s more than likely they are from MH370.

https://youtu.be/2xUkd2XcatM

Sources: Defimedia, l’express.mu, ionews, l’express.mu


Wednesday 1 June 2016 

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/737873418020872192

Key developments this week

  • Winter weather conditions continue to bring rough seas and strong winds to the search area, impacting on operations.
  • Fugro Discovery is on weather standby north of the search area. Forecast poor weather conditions will likely delay search operations.
  • Fugro Equator has been unable to undertake deep tow search activities due to poor weather. Consequently, the vessel has been tasked with bathymetric survey operations which can generally still be carried out in such conditions, however, survey was suspended briefly when the weather became extreme. Surveying has now recommenced.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 continues to be on weather standby as current conditions preclude
    deep-tow search operations.

Underwater search operations

Recent poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations. It is now anticipated it may take until around July/August to complete the 120,000 square kilometres, but this will be influenced by weather conditions over the winter months.

Poor conditions have prevented the safe deployment of deep tow search equipment from any of the vessels for the past three weeks. These conditions make it unsafe for crew to perform some activities and to access some areas, such as the back working deck.

In the last week, a peak wave height of 18.2 metres was measured on board the vessel (the vessel itself is 20 metres from the waterline to the top of the mast). While none of the search vessels has sustained damage that would affect its ability to continue the search, the poor weather directly impacts on the crew, their ability to work effectively, and to get adequate rest. The doctors on board each vessel have been actively monitoring the health and wellbeing of all personnel.

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

2015_Indicative Search Area _Australia Overview _A4

Click image to enlarge 

Weather

Poor weather conditions are again forecast for the coming week and it is expected that search operations will continue to be disrupted.

Source: ATSB


Friday 27 May 2016

UPDATE 27 May 2016 on previous post (26 May 2016): 

MH370: BBC reader finds possible debris in Mozambique

Luca Kuhn von Burgsdorff contacted the BBC on Thursday to say he found the fragment on the Macaneta peninsula.

The authorities have been notified. The piece must be examined by the official investigation team in Australia.

Experts say it is consistent with where previous pieces of debris from the missing plane have been found.

Mr von Burgsdorff took two photographs of the item on 22 May, and sent them to the BBC after reading a story on Thursday about other debris finds in the region.

He said the pieces were “reasonably light, did not have metal on the outside, and looked extremely similar to photos posted on the internet of other pieces of debris from aeroplanes”.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), which is co-ordinating the ocean search, said the latest finder had since contacted them about the debris.

They said that having seen the photographs the piece was “certainly of interest” but it was now up to the Malaysian authorities to decide whether to organise retrieval and further analysis.

If they decide it is worthy of further investigation the piece will likely be taken to Australia for analysis.

Source: BBC

Some extra info http://wp.me/p14cXv-1hA


Thursday 26 May 2016

https://twitter.com/BBCwestcott/status/735829117271179264

https://twitter.com/BBCwestcott/status/735829804273049600

https://twitter.com/Airlandseaman/status/735897001909313536

Today, BBC Transport Correspondent Richard Westcott, posted two images (above) to twitter that were emailed to him by a BBC viewer in Mozambique on the day he did an interview with Blaine Gibson. Blaine Gibson found a piece of debris (a horizontal stabilizer, containing the words ‘No Step’) on a sandbar in the Mozambique Channel on 27 February 2016 which is one of the five pieces that is confirmed to be ‘almost certainly’ coming from MH370.

No further details are available yet and it is also not known if the piece of debris is linked to MH370 and/or already in physical custody of the authorities involved in the search.

More information will be added when available.

UPDATE 27 May 2016: 

MH370: BBC reader finds possible debris in Mozambique

A reader contacted the BBC on Thursday to say he recently found the fragment on the Macaneta peninsula.

The authorities have been notified. The piece must be examined by the official investigation team in Australia.

Experts say it is consistent with where previous pieces of debris from the missing plane have been found.

The reader took two photographs of the item on 22 May, and sent them to the BBC after reading a story on Thursday about other debris finds in the region.

He said the pieces were “reasonably light, did not have metal on the outside, and looked extremely similar to photos posted on the internet of other pieces of debris from aeroplanes”.

Source: BBC


Thursday 26 May 2016

A first look at the new debris found by a tourist in southern Mozambique which will be tested for a possible link to  

Source


Thursday 26 May 2016 

Three new items of debris to be examined in relation to the disappearance of MH370

MEDIA RELEASE  DC073/2016  26 May 2016

26May2016 Three new items of debrisMinister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester today confirmed reports that three new pieces of debris—two in Mauritius and one in Mozambique—have been found and are of interest in connection to the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370.

“The Malaysian Government is yet to take custody of the items, however as with previous items, Malaysian officials are arranging collection and it is expected the items will be brought to Australia for examination,” Mr Chester said.

“These items of debris are of interest and will be examined by experts.”

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the 120,000 square kilometre search zone in the southern Indian Ocean have been completed.

More information about the search can be found on the Joint Agency Coordination Centre website at www.jacc.gov.au.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester

https://twitter.com/DarrenChesterMP/status/735692860440223744

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/735697433498247168


Wednesday 25 May 2016

Another piece of suspected debris found at Gris-Gris, Mauritius

Debris-suspecté-de-provenir-de-MH370 Gris Gris -864x400_c

Suspected debris found at Gris-Gris

Gris-Gris, Mauritius

Gris-Gris, Mauritius

Yesterday mid-afternoon, during a patrol, a foot Coast Guard has found suspected aircraft debris along the beach of Gris-Gris, Mauritius, about six meters from the water.The debris is being reviewed by the National Coast Guard and the Department of Civil Aviation. The authorities are currently considering the possibility to contact the Malaysian authorities for further investigation.

Source: ionnews.mu

.

.


Wednesday 25 May 2016

New debris found at l’îlot Bernache (Goose Island) in northern Mauritius

Goose Island in northern Mauritius - clicanoo 25 may 2016

New debris found at L’ilot Bernache in northern Mauritius.

Pointe Bernache, Mauritius map

Pointe Bernache, Mauritius

This new piece of debris, found by a tourist at Goose island (l’îlot Bernache, often labelled as Pointe Bernache) Mauritius, and given to the Coast Guard in Grand Gaube  yesterday, is of a size of 80 centimeters by 40 centimeters. An analysis by civil aviation experts and coastguard officers is ongoing. The Malaysian aid will also be sought. 

The non-metalic piece of debris was discovered about two weeks ago by a French tourist and delivered to a skipper. It was only yesterday that he handed the piece to the National Coast Guard patrolling the area of Grand-Gaube.

The piece is currently appraised by the NCG with the help of the Department of Civil Aviation of Mauritius. Help of Malaysia could be sought, said a police statement.

The chief inspector of the Police Press Office, Shiva Coothen gives  more details:

https://soundcloud.com/topfmmauritius/le-chef-inspecteur-shiva-coothen-donne-des-explications-sur-le-debris-davion

Sources: Clicanoo, TopFMRadio, L’express.mu

Until now five fragments of debris determined to be from MH370 have been found and studied in variously in France, Malaysia and by Australia’s ATSB, which is managing the search for the sunk wreckage on the floor of the south Indian Ocean, SW of Perth.

A part of the right wing called a flaperon was recovered from La Réunion island last July, followed by a section of the right hand side vertical stabiliser and another section of the right hand wing that were found in different locations on Mozambique shores, followed by a part of a cabin panel discovered on Rodrigues Island in Mauritius, and part of an engine cowling which had been found (twice) on a beach in South Africa.


Wednesday 25 May 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/735335873475182593

Key developments this week

  • Winter weather conditions continue to bring rough seas and strong winds to the search area, impacting on operations.
  • Fugro Discovery is on weather standby north of the search area. Forecast poor weather conditions will likely delay search operations.
  • Fugro Equator has been unable to undertake deep tow search activities due to poor weather. Consequently, the vessel has been tasked with bathymetric survey operations which can generally still be carried out in such conditions.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 continues to be on weather standby as current conditions preclude deep-tow search operations.

Underwater search operations

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. It is anticipated this will be completed around the middle of the year. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Poor weather conditions are again forecast for the coming week and it is expected that search operations will continue to be disrupted. Bathymetric survey operations will be undertaken as weather permits.


Tuesday 24 May 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/734910891506814976

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/734911789213712384

A photograph of the barnacle-encrusted piece found by Schalk Lückhoff in South Africa was released Tuesday by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.

Schalk Luckhof, a retired doctor, discovered a likely piece of Malaysia Airlines MH370 on a beach — but left it in the sand because it smelled so bad, local media reported.

The ATSB’s release drew attention to an interview Lückhoff gave with Afrikaans-language broadcaster Netwerk24 last week, in which he explained why he had not collected the object or reported it to authorities.

He told Netwerk24: “It was the only object on the empty sands. It was smelly because it was encrusted in rotting mussels so I didn’t handle it, I just took a photograph. It did not occur to me this could be a piece of a plane’s insignia … After the next high [tide] I didn’t see it anymore and assumed it had been taken back into the sea.”

Lückhoff took the photo in South Afirca’s Mossel Bay on December 23, according to the ATSB. Barnacles and sand could be seen partially covering a distinctive Rolls-Royce “RR” stencil, likely from one of MH370’s two engines.

But three months later the very same piece was found again in Mossel Bay, this time by South African archeologist Neels Kruger. The object had apparently been shorn of its barnacles and seaweed, and the 35-year-old contacted authorities.

Some extra info http://wp.me/p14cXv-1hA

The object is one of five washed up across South Africa, Mozambique, the Mauritian island Rodrigues and La Reunion island — all of which authorities say “almost certainly” came from MH370.


Wednesday 18 May 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/732801010633199616

Key developments this week

  • Winter weather conditions brought rough seas and strong winds to the search area which impacted on operations this week.
  • Fugro Discovery arrived in Fremantle on 16 May for resupply. The vessel departed for the search area on 17 May.
  • Fugro Equator arrived back in the search area on 14 May but was unable to undertake search activities due to the weather. Consequently, the vessel has been tasked with bathymetric survey operations which can generally still be carried out in poor weather conditions.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 arrived back in the search area on 16 May. The vessel is on weather standby as current conditions preclude deep-tow search operations.

Underwater search operations

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. It is anticipated this will be completed around the middle of the year. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

Weather

Poor weather conditions are forecast for the coming week. Search operations will continue to be disrupted, however bathymetric survey operations will be undertaken as weather permits.


Thursday 12 May 2016

Experts confirm debris almost certainly from MH370

MAY 12, 2016 AT 11:33 AM

Thursday, 12 May 2016

PRESS STATEMENT
BY YB DATO’ SRI LIOW TIONG LAI
MINISTER OF TRANSPORT, MALAYSIA

Liow: Experts confirm debris almost certainly from MH370

Examinations of the two pieces of debris discovered in South Africa and the Mauritian island of Rodrigues, which were an engine cowling piece with a partial Rolls-Royce logo and an interior panel piece from an aircraft cabin respectively, were completed by a team of international experts in Australia.

Following a thorough examination, the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team have concluded that both pieces of debris are consistent with panels found on a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft.

As such, the team has confirmed that both pieces of debris from South Africa and Rodrigues Island are almost certainly from MH370. This complements the results from the previous examination in March during which the team confirmed that the Mozambique debris were almost certainly from MH370.

We wish to express our sincere gratitude to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), Geoscience Australia and Boeing for their undivided commitment and assistance in this examination process.

We also thank the Governments of Mozambique, Mauritius and South Africa for the efforts and cooperation extended to Malaysia in this matter.

The Governments of Malaysia, Australia and China continue to be wholly committed to the search for MH370. To date, more than 105,000 square kilometres of the search area have been completed.

[END]


Thursday 12 May 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/730573091303100418

Debris examination – update No. 2

Identification of two items of debris recovered from the beaches in South Africa and Mauritius

Introduction

On 22 and 30 March 2016, two items of debris were independently found on beaches at Mossel Bay, South Africa and Rodrigues Island in Mauritius. Both items were delivered to the relevant Civil Aviation Authorities in South Africa and Mauritius. Assistance from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) was requested by the Malaysian Government in the formal identification of the items to determine if they came from the Malaysian Airlines Berhad (MAB) Boeing 777 aircraft, registered 9M-MRO, operating as MH370.

The items were packaged in South Africa and Mauritius respectively and delivered safe-hand to the ATSB in their original packaging, in the custody of the ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team members.

This document (Update 2) is a brief summary of the outcomes from the identification of these items, designated as Part numbers 3 and 4. It follows the identification of Part numbers 1 and 2, the outcomes of which were released by the ATSB in Update 1 on 19 April 2016. This debris identification summary is released with the concurrence of the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370.

Quarantine and marine ecology

On arrival into Australia, both parts were quarantined at the Geoscience Australia facility in Canberra. The parts were unwrapped and examined for the presence of marine ecology and remnants of biological material. Visible marine ecology was present on both parts and these items were removed and preserved. The parts were subsequently cleaned and released from quarantine.

Identification

Part No. 3

Part number 3 was initially identified from the partial Rolls-Royce stencil as a segment from an aircraft engine cowling. The panel thickness, materials and construction conformed to the applicable drawings for Boeing 777 engine cowlings.

There were no identifiers on the engine cowling segment that were unique to 9M-MRO, however the Rolls-Royce stencil font and detail did not match the original from manufacture. The stencil was consistent with that developed and used by Malaysian Airlines and closely matched exemplar stencils on other MAB Boeing 777 aircraft (Figure 1).

There were identical inboard and outboard stencils present on the cowlings of each of the engines and the location of the stencils was found to vary between engines. Taking that into consideration, there were no significant differentiators on the cowling segment to assist in determining whether the item of debris was from the left or right side of the aircraft, or the inboard or outboard side the cowling.

Part No. 4

Part number 4 was preliminarily identified by the decorative laminate as an interior panel from the main cabin. The location of a piano hinge on the part surface was consistent with a work-table support leg, utilised on the exterior of the MAB Door R1 (forward, right hand) closet panel (Figure 2). The part materials, dimensions, construction and fasteners were all consistent with the drawing for the panel assembly and matched that installed on other MAB Boeing 777 aircraft at the Door R1 location.

There were no identifiers on the panel segment that were unique to 9M-MRO, however the pattern, colour and texture of the laminate was only specified by MAB for use on Boeing 747 and 777 aircraft. There is no record of the laminate being used by any other Boeing 777 customer.

Figure 1: Comparison of Boeing 777 engine cowling stencils

This figure shows the comparison between the found part with the RR logo on it with a Malaysian Airlines stencil and a Boeing stencil. Features on the found part logo are most similar to the Malaysian Airlines stencil.

Note the thickness of the “ROYCE” lettering and the serif geometry on the main ‘R’s (enlarged for ease of comparison).

Source: Malaysian MOT / ATSB

Figure 2: Comparison of recovered item with MAB Boeing 777 Door R1 panel assembly

This figure shows features of the recovered internal panel with an exemplar Malaysian Airlines B777 Door R1 closet panel. The similarities include the table support hinge and the decorative vinyl laminate.

Source: Malaysian MOT / ATSB

Conclusions

At the time of writing, work was ongoing with respect to the marine ecology samples. The results from these tests will be provided to the Malaysian investigation team once complete. In terms of the identification of the two items of debris, it was concluded that:

  • Part No. 3 was a Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 engine cowling segment, almost certainly from the aircraft registered 9M-MRO.
  • Part No. 4 was a Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 panel segment from the main cabin, associated with the Door R1 closet, almost certainly from the aircraft registered 9M-MRO.

General details

General details
Date: 07 Mar 2014 Investigation status: Active
Time: 1722 UTC Investigation type: External Investigation
Location   (show map): Southern Indian Ocean Occurrence type: Missing aircraft
State: International Occurrence class: Technical
Release date: 12 May 2016 Occurrence category: Technical Analysis
Report status: Pending Highest injury level: Fatal
Expected completion: Nov 2016

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft model: 777-200ER
Aircraft registration: 9M-MRO
Operator: Malaysian Airlines
Type of operation: Air Transport High Capacity
Sector: Jet
Departure point: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Destination: Beijing, China
Download Debris Examination 2
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Wednesday 11 May 2016

MH370 Operational Search Update — 11 May 2016 JACC

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/730279846119542785

Key developments this week

  • Poor weather conditions prompted the crew of Fugro Discovery to recover the deeptow vehicle and go to weather avoidance on 8 May. The vessel is expected to depart for Fremantle later today.
  • Fugro Equator departed Fremantle for the search area on 6 May but poor weather has slowed transit to the search area. The vessel is anticipated to arrive on 11 May but weather conditions in the coming days are expected to preclude search operations.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 completed testing of the SLH-ProSAS-60 deep tow system and departed for the search area on 10 May.

Underwater search operations

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. It is anticipated this will be completed around the middle of the year. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.


Monday 9 May 2016

Australian officials say the ‘black box’ found washed up on a beach is an older type than that used in MH370

5 May 2016 Somalia coast

Image posted on 5 May 2016 | Source

A flight recorder found washed up on a Somali beach is not from the missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370.

The orange, spherical object was found on a beach near the coastal town of Gara’ad by a local businessman identified only as Gaashaanle Ciiraale, Somalia’s Jariiban News Network reported on Thursday.

Ciiraale posted images of himself posing with his discovery to his Facebook page on 5  May 2016, along with a message saying:

“Today around 10 hours of daylight Indian Ocean coast # dhabarxagato not far from the coastal city on behalf of the items you can see the items listed above # Fly recoding
The technology has aadamaya at the Indian Ocean from caariyeen waste much as ujeedaanba”

Mohamed Mire Fahie, a friend of Ciiraale’s, told Malaysia’s Rakyat Post on Sunday that the object had been given to a reporter. It was not clear whether it had been handed over to police.

The Rakyat Post said the object may be linked to flight MH370, still missing after more than two years, given the separate discoveries of debris on two beaches in Mozambique.

American blogger Blaine Alan Gibson and South African teenager Liam Lotter both found debris washed up on beaches that was subsequently confirmed to “almost certainly” be from the wing of the missing plane.

But although it appeared that the object was a data recorder, experts did not think it was from MH370.

A spokesperson for the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, which is coordinating the search for the plane, said it was of the type used from the late 1960s to the 1970s, and had come from either an aircraft or possibly a ship.

“In any case, it is definitely not from MH370, which was equipped with a modern ‘orange brick’-style flight data recorder.

“It is worth noting that the MH370 flight data recorder would not float, so it is highly unlikely that it will be found on any coastline.”

Sources:  Gaashaanle Ciiraale Faandhe, Jariiban News NetworkRakyat Post , The Guardian


Wednesday 4 May 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/727726211544264704

Key developments this week

  • Fugro Discovery experienced problems with its deep-tow side scan sonar on 1 May, requiring the equipment to be reset. As this created a gap in the data, the vessel turned and transited back to the point at which the signal had begun to degrade before re-running the line to ensure complete coverage of the area. Search operations are continuing.
  • Fugro Equator departed the search area on 29 April, and is en route to Fremantle to conduct a scheduled resupply visit.
  • Dong Hai Jiu 101 will shortly depart Fremantle port and proceeded to the calibration range to test the recovered SLH‑ProSAS‑60 deep tow system. Once testing is complete, the vessel will return to Fremantle for supplies, before departing for the search area.

Underwater search operations

More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. It is anticipated this will be completed around the middle of the year. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.


Thursday 28 April 2016

Video of Very Intense Tropical Cyclone Fantala / 19S (2016)

Very Intense Tropical Cyclone Fantala, 19S, of the 2015-16 South-West Indian Ocean Cyclone Season will likely cause more possible debris to wash up along the coasts of Africa.

https://youtu.be/dStCtYE45Io

About Tropical Cyclone Fantala, 19S

Very Intense Tropical Cyclone Fantala was the strongest tropical cyclone of the south-west Indian Ocean in terms of sustained winds. Part of the 2015–16 cyclone season, Fantala formed on 11 April to the south of Diego Garcia, an island in the central Indian Ocean. With a ridge to the south, the storm moved westward for several days while gaining strength, aided by warm waters and decreasing wind shear. Late on 17 April, the Météo-France office on Réunion (MFR) estimated peak 10-minute winds of 250 km/h (155 mph), making Fantala the strongest tropical cyclone of the basin in terms of 10-minute sustained winds. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) estimated peak 1-minute winds of 280 km/h (175 mph), equivalent to Category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale and tied only with Agnielle from November 1995 as the strongest on record in the south-west Indian Ocean.

While near peak intensity, Fantala passed near the Farquhar Group of the Seychelles, damaging most of the buildings in the small archipelago. By April 18, Fantala had weakened to an intense tropical cyclone and slowed its forward motion, eventually reversing its direction of movement. After fluctuating in strength, the disorganized system reversed direction again, making its closest approach to Madagascar. Fantala degenerated into a remnant low on 24 April, and the remnants continued toward Tanzania. There, heavy rainfall resulted in flooding that washed away roads and houses, killing 13 people. Rains extended further into Kenya, with similar effects.


Wednesday 27 April 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/725189431959928832

Key developments this week

  • Rough weather conditions over the weekend resulted in Fugro Discovery suspending search operations for a short period, but the vessel has since resumed underwater search operations. The vessel will be departing the search area around 13 May for a scheduled resupply visit to Fremantle.
  • Fugro Equator continues to conduct underwater search operations. The vessel will be departing the search area around 28 April for a scheduled resupply visit to Fremantle.

Underwater search operations

More than 100,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities, including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.

Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People’s Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. It is anticipated this will be completed around the middle of the year. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/725200189271736321


Wednesday 20 April 2016

Technical Report Released and Towfish Found

MEDIA RELEASE – DC053/2016 – 20 April 2016

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has released the Technical Examination Report on the two items of debris found in Mozambique.

The Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the report pointed to both pieces being from the wing of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

“I welcome the Technical Examination Report released by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau confirming the debris almost certainly originated from MH370,” Mr Chester said.

“Stencilling on both parts of debris provided investigators with evidence of the link. The font and colour of a number stencilled on the first part conforms to that developed and used by Malaysian Airlines.

“The second part contained the words ‘No Step’ with stencilling consistent with that used by Malaysian Airlines and a fastener attached to the part provided evidence linking the part to the aircraft’s production line.

“I thank the team from ATSB, Geoscience Australia, Boeing and the Australian National University for their work.”

The search for the missing aircraft continues in the final 20,000 square kilometres.

The Chinese vessel Dong Hai Jiu 101involved in the search is set to be re-deployed to the area after the recovery of sonar equipment lost during the search.

“On 21 March the failure of a tow cable connector resulted in the loss of the ProSAS towfish fromDong Hai Jiu 101,” Mr Chester said.

“I am pleased to advise that both the towfish and its accompanying depressor have been successfully recovered from the floor of the ocean.

“The equipment will be examined and tested and then the vessel will return to the search area.”

The report is available at www.atsb.gov.au/mh370-pages/updates/reports/.

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/722655247475286016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/722574102133755904


Tuesday 19 April 2016

https://twitter.com/atsbinfo/status/722222498482298882

Debris examination – update No. 1

Identification of two items of debris recovered in Mozambique

Introduction

On 27 December 2015 and 27 February 2016, two items of debris were independently found, approximately 220km apart, on the Mozambique coast. Both items were delivered to the relevant Civil Aviation Authorities in Mozambique and South Africa in early March 2016. Assistance from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) was requested by the Malaysian Government in the formal identification of the items to determine if they came from the Malaysian Airlines Berhad (MAB) Boeing 777 aircraft, registered 9M-MRO, operating as MH370.

The parts were packaged in Mozambique and South Africa respectively and delivered safe-hand to the ATSB in their original packaging, in the custody of the ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team members.

The following is a brief summary of the outcomes from the debris examination. This debris examination summary is released with the concurrence of the Malaysian ICAO Annex 13 Safety Investigation Team for MH370.

Quarantine and marine ecology

On arrival into Australia, both parts were quarantined at the Geoscience Australia facility in Canberra. The parts were unwrapped and examined for the presence of marine ecology and remnants of biological material. Visible marine ecology was present on both parts and these items were removed and preserved. The parts were subsequently cleaned and released from quarantine.

Identification

Part No. 1

The first part was initially identified from a number stencilled on the part (676EB), as a segment from a Boeing 777 flap track fairing (Fairing No. 7) from the right wing (Figure 1). All measurable dimensions, materials, construction and other identifiable features conformed to the applicable Boeing drawings for the identified fairing.

The 676EB stencil font and colour was not original from manufacture, but instead conformed to that developed and used by MAB during painting operations (Figure 2). The part had been repainted, which was consistent with MAB maintenance records for 9M-MRO.

Figure 1: Location of flap track fairing panel No. 676EB

Source: Boeing 777 aircraft maintenance manual (modified by ATSB)

Figure 2: Flap fairing outer surface showing stencil location and comparison

Source: ATSB

Part No. 2

The second part was primarily identified from images showing the materials, construction and “NO STEP” stencil, as a segment of a Boeing 777 RH horizontal stabilizer panel (Figure 3). All measurable dimensions, materials, construction and other identifiable features conformed to the Boeing drawings for the stabiliser panel.

The part was marked on the upper surface in black paint with “NO STEP”. The font and location of the stencil were not original from manufacture, however the stencilling was consistent with that developed and used by Malaysian Airlines (Figure 4).

A single fastener was retained in the part. The fastener head markings identified it as being correct for use on the stabiliser panel assembly. The markings also identified the fastener manufacturer. That manufacturer’s fasteners were not used in current production, but did match the fasteners used in assembly of the aircraft next in the production line (405) to 9M-MRO (404) (Figure 4).

Figure 3: Location of horizontal stabiliser panel No. 3 upper

Source: Boeing 777 Parts Catalogue (modified by ATSB)

Figure 4: Stabiliser panel “NO STEP” stencil and fastener comparison

Source: ATSB, Boeing

Conclusions

At the time of writing, ongoing work was being conducted with respect to the marine ecology identification as well as testing of material samples. The results from these tests will be provided to the Malaysian investigation team once complete. Nevertheless, from the initial examination it was concluded that:

Part No. 1 was a flap track fairing segment, almost certainly from the Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft, registered 9M-MRO.

Part No. 2 was a horizontal stabiliser panel segment, almost certainly from the Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft, registered 9M-MRO.

General details

General details
Date: 07 Mar 2014 Investigation status: Active
Time: 1722 UTC Investigation type: External Investigation
Location   (show map): Southern Indian Ocean Occurrence type: Missing aircraft
State: International Occurrence class: Technical
Release date: 12 May 2016 Occurrence category: Technical Analysis
Report status: Pending Highest injury level: Fatal
Expected completion: Nov 2016

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft model: 777-200ER
Aircraft registration: 9M-MRO
Operator: Malaysian Airlines
Type of operation: Air Transport High Capacity
Sector: Jet
Departure point: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Destination: Beijing, China

Tuesday 19 April 2016

Tropical Cyclone 19S (Fantala) is active in the South Indian Ocean…located about 774 NM northwest of Port Louis, Mauritius