rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » News » Finding MH370: Robotic submarine aborts its first search

Finding MH370: Robotic submarine aborts its first search

April 15, 2014 11:37 IST

Finding MH370: Robotic submarine aborts its first search

     Next

Next

A robotic submarine deployed to locate the missing Malaysian plane's black boxes on the floor of the Indian Ocean on Tuesday aborted its first search as it encountered water deeper than its operating limits of 4.5 km.

Autonomous underwater vehicle Bluefin 21, a US Navy probe equipped with side-scan sonar, was deployed last evening from the Australian navy ship Ocean Shield to map the ocean floor.

However, the mini-submarine deployed for 16 hours aborted its first search after just six hours because the water was deeper than its operating limits, officials said.

"After completing around six hours of its mission, Bluefin-21 exceeded its operating depth limit of 4,500 metres and its built in safety feature returned it to the surface," the Joint Agency Coordination Centre which is leading the search said on the 39th day of the hunt for the plane.

"The six hours of data gathered by the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle is currently being extracted and analysed," it said.

Click NEXT to see more PHOTOS...


Image: Crew aboard the Australian Defence Vessel Ocean Shield move the US Navy's Bluefin-21 autonomous underwater vehicle into position for deployment in the southern Indian Ocean to look for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370
Photographs: US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Peter D. Blair/Handout/Reuters

     Next

Finding MH370: Robotic submarine aborts its first search

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

The Bluefin-21 will make a second mission today to the remote Indian Ocean seabed when weather conditions permit.

Malaysia's Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters that it's "not important" who gets the black box, it's more important to find the truth.

Finding black the black box is crucial to know what happened on March 8 before the Beijing-bound Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 with 239 people, including five Indians, an Indo-Canadian and 154 Chinese nationals, mysteriously vanished after taking off from Kuala Lumpur.

The batteries powering the black box are certified to be working for 30 days, but can still provide weak signals for some more days. Stored in a plane's tail, they are designed to begin sending off distinct, high-pitched signals as soon as they come in contact with water.

Click NEXT to see more PHOTOS...


Image: The Chinese Maritime Safety Administration vessel Hai Xin 01 is seen from a Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P-3K2 Orion aircraft in the southern Indian Ocean, as the search continues for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
Photographs: Greg Wood/Pool/Reuters

Prev     Next

Finding MH370: Robotic submarine aborts its first search

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

Meanwhile, Australian chief search coordinator Air Chief Marshall (retd.) Angus Houston said officials were investigating an oil slick about 5,500 meters from the area where the last underwater sounds were detected.

According to a JACC statement, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority has planned a visual search area totalling approximately 62,063 square kilometres on Tuesday.

The weather forecast is south easterly winds with scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms, sea swells up to two metres and visibility of 5 kilometres.

Up to 9 military aircraft, two civilian plane and 11 ships are assisting the search operation.

The mystery of the missing plane continued to baffle aviation and security authorities who have so far not succeeded in tracking the aircraft despite deploying hi-tech radar and other gadgets.

 


Image: Pilot and captain Flight Lieutenant Timothy McAlevey (R), and flight engineer Chris Poole look from the cockpit of a Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P-3K2 Orion aircraft, as they fly over the southern Indian Ocean to continue the search for missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370
Photographs: Greg Wood/Pool/Reuters

Prev     Next

TOP photo features you missed last week

Prev     More

Click on MORE to see another PHOTO feature...



Tags: 1

Prev     More