You are on page 1of 3

Two more 'pings' heard in hunt for MH370

W E D N E S D AY 09 APRIL 2014 Australian officials have etecte t!o ne! si"nals in the hunt for #issin" $ala%sia Airlines fli"ht $&'(0 )ut ti#e is runnin" out as the )atteries in on fli"ht )lac* )o+es are e+,ecte to fail soon-

Above: the shadow of a Royal New Zealand Air Force search aircraft can be seen on low-level clouds. The Australian search ship 'Ocean hield' detected one !pin"! on Tuesday afternoon that last for five #inutes and $% seconds& and a second !pin"! on Tuesday ni"ht which was #aintained for seven #inutes. Over the wee'end& two other si"nals in the !sa#e broad area!& were detected.

Angus Houston, head of the Australian agency coordinating the search, said the new "pings" would help create a "much more manageable search area on the ocean floor." !( believe we are searchin" in the ri"ht area but we need to visually identify aircraft wrec'a"e before we can confir# with certainty that this is the final restin" place of )*+,-.! The battery powered blac' have already reached the end of their +-day life e.pectancy& #eanin" the search tea#s are now operatin" on !bonus ti#e!. The search for )*+,-& which disappeared on / )arch with $+0 people on board& is now centred on an area around 1&2-- #iles northwest of 3erth in Australia. The search area total #ore than $0&--- s4uare #iles.

Shrinking search area Two more detections of faint electronic pings from deep in the ocean doesn't sound like a lot, but they could be the difference between finding the wreckage of the missing jet or not, writes Science ditor Tom !larke The "towed pinger locator" being dragged behind the Australian search ship is able to establish the direction of where the pings are coming from. Ha"ing two more detections means there can now start to triangulate the position of the flight data recorder. #etailed analysis of the pings heard at the weekend has also confirmed they are from "specific electronic e$uipment" %% most likely a flight data recorder. Angus Houston who is heading up the search concluded last night& "''m now optimistic that we will find the aircraft, or what is left of the aircraft in the not too distant future." That's because all the locations from which they ha"e heard pings are within () kilometres of each other % a radically smaller search area than the one they were dealing with just a few days ago. *urthermore, now they ha"e four different points from which they can draw "irtual lines from in the direction from which the sound was coming. The triangulation % where those lines o"erlap % will then further narrow the search area. +ut there are still challenges to pinpointing the wreckage. "The main problem is sound wa"es don't tra"el in straight lines underwater," said ,rof #a"id Stupples an electronic engineer at !ity -ni"ersity of .ondon. Signals can bounce off terrain and e"en be deflected by layers of seawater at different temperatures. /nce the search teams belie"e the batteries on the black bo0es ha"e run out, a submarine will be sent underwater to search for the plane1s wreckage. The water in the area is more than two miles deep. )r *ouston told reporters in 3erth: !Now hopefully with lots of trans#issions we'll have a ti"ht& s#all area and hopefully in a #atter of days we will be able to find so#ethin" on the botto# that #i"ht confir# that this is the last restin" place of )*+,-. !5ear in #ind& that the ti#e spent on the surface& we're coverin" si. ti#es #ore area and any "iven ti#e than we'll be able to do when we "o underwater. o with the batteries li'ely to fade or fail very shortly& we need to "et as #uch positional data as we can so that we can define a very s#all search area.!