The Bluefin-21 Autonomous Underwater Vehicle
sits in the water after being deployed
from the Australian Defence Vessel Ocean Shield
Underwater search for plane could end in a week
Sydney, April 19, 2014
Australian officials supervising the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 told Reuters on Saturday that an underwater search for the black box recorder based on "pings" possibly from the device could be completed in five to seven days.
A U.S. Navy deep-sea autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) is scouring a remote stretch of the Indian Ocean floor for signs of the flight, which disappeared from radars on March 8 with 239 people on board and is believed to have crashed in the area.
The current underwater search has been narrowed to a circular area with a radius of 10 km (6.2 miles) around the location in which one of four pings believed to have come from the black box recorders was detected on April 8, officials said.
The massive international search and rescue effort for any physical evidence of the plane's wreckage, now in its seventh week, has so far proved fruitless.
"Provided the weather is favourable for launch and recovery of the AUV and we have a good run with the serviceability of the AUV, we should complete the search of the focused underwater area in five to seven days," the Joint Agency Coordination Centre told Reuters in an email. – Reuters