flight 370

Malaysia didn’t start looking for the missing plane until 4 hours after it disappeared

Malaysian officials have released a preliminary report about the Flight 370 disappearance that says the official rescue operation didn’t start until four hours after the plane vanished from radar.

CNN reports that Malaysian officials also noted it took 17 minutes for anyone to notice that the plane had gone off the radar.

The gist of the report — officials are still far from finding the missing plane.

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Meet Bluefin-21, the robot that’s searching for the missing Malaysian Airlines plane

Underwater operations company Phoenix International has a contract with the U.S. Navy to use a robot called Bluefin-21 to search the Indian Ocean for signs of the missing Malaysian Airlines flight 370.

The 21-foot-long robot is capable of staying submerged for 25 hours at a time, deploying its sensors to search and map 40 square miles of sea floor per day.

We spoke to David P. Kelly, President and CEO of Bluefin Robotics, the Massachusetts-based company which manufactures Bluefin-21, to learn more about it.

“It’s a 4,500-meter-rated vehicle, so it can descend to 2.5 miles underwater,” he told us. “Once it goes down, it ‘flies’ above the seabed and uses sonar acoustics to image the ocean floor. It also moves in a ‘mowing the lawn’ pattern, running in parallel lines that overlap and cover the entire bottom to form an image of the sea floor.”

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Here’s a satellite photo of debris that could be from the missing plane

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott says satellite photos taken over the Indian Ocean may show parts of the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370. The plane has been missing for 12 days and it had 239 people on board. There are numerous theories about what happened to it.

The satellite photos show two objects located about 1,400 miles off the coast of Perth, Australia. The larger object appears to be 75 feet across.

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Here’s what pilots think about the new idea that the missing plane flew for hours after a fire killed the pilots

It’s been a week and a half since Malaysia 370 disappeared, and the theory du jour comes from a former pilot.

In a Google+ post, Chris Goodfellow argued that smoke filled the cockpit, maybe from a burning tire on the front landing gear.

The pilots turned the plane toward an airport that could handle the 777, turned off the transponder along with other electronics in an effort to isolate the source of the fire, and were then overcome by smoke, he theorized.

The plane’s autopilot kept the course until it ran out of fuel and crashed hours later.

Goodfellow’s theory is appealing, we noted, because it fits the facts we have on MH370. It impressed The Atlantic’s James Fallows, himself a pilot: “His explanation makes better sense than anything else I’ve heard so far … It’s one of the few that make me think, Yes, I could see things happening that way.”

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What pilots think about the crazy new theory that the missing Malaysia jet used another jet to hide

Not surprisingly, the disappearance of Malaysia Flight 370 with 239 people on board more than a week ago has led some people to come up with very interesting theories about what might have happened.

On his Tumblr, self-identified hobby pilot and aviation enthusiast Keith Ledgerwood put forward the most elaborate and interesting suggestion we’ve heard yet.

He argues the 777 could have flown over India and Pakistan, avoiding military radar detection by turning off its communications systems and following a Singapore Airlines 777 so closely the two aircraft “would have shown up as one single blip on the radar.”

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How anyone with a computer can help search for the missing Malaysian airplane

A U.S. satellite operator is enabling anyone with Internet access to help search for the Malaysia Airlines flight that disappeared in the South China Sea days ago.

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Here’s the route the Malaysian military thinks the missing Boeing 777 took

Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 has been missing for four days with more than 200 people on board, and the country’s military now thinks the Boeing 777 turned around over the Gulf of Thailand and flew at least 350 miles away from its destination, Beijing.

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