WEAR - Search Results
Hopes remain in locating black boxes from Malaysian Flight 370
Tuesday marked exactly one month since Malaysia Air Flight 370 vanished.
There has still been no sign of wreckage from the plane but there is now growing optimism that the plane's black boxes have been located.
ABC's Susan Saulny has the latest developments.
Over the weekend search teams heard sounds but then nothing.
But less than 24 hours ago the crews heard two more pings.
"They therefore assess that the transmission was not of natural origin and was likely sourced from specific electronic equipment. They believe the signals to be consistent with the specification and description of a flight data recorder."
16 miles separate the location of the pings heard over the weekend and the ones last night. Officials now hope to narrow the search area so they can deploy an underwater vehicle called the Bluefin 21 to search for debris on the seafloor. All of this could take days or even weeks.
11 military aircraft and 14 ships were sent out today for a closer inspection.
Mark Matthews, US Navy Captain:
"So, the biggest concern is time. Because there is, there is a finite amount of time that those pingers will be transmitting
Once the beacons STOP TRANSMITTING, locating the black boxes in such deep water would be an immensely difficult, if not impossible, task. The search
area in the Indian Ocean is very deep. Traveling below the surface, at 17 hundred feet, we would pass the World Trade Center. Sperm whales don't
live below 32 hundred feet. The Titanic was found at 12 thousand 600 feet.
And the Bluefin 21 has a limit of 15,000 feet and that is where the black box pingers may be located.
"I'm now optimistic that we will we will find the aircraft, or what is left of the aircraft in the not too distant future. But we haven't found it yet."
Standup: the crews report that the pings heard last night were definitely weaker than the one heard over the weekend. That's a sign the batteries may fading, since they were designed to only last one month