New MH370 search given green light

MH370: High-tech best chance to find missing Malaysia Airlines flight off WA coast

The Malaysian government has announced that nearly four years after Flight MH370 disappeared and a year after a huge search lasting over a thousand days was finally suspended, it has cut a deal with a U.S. deep sea exploration company to resume the hunt.

Channel NewsAsia understands that Malaysia has agreed to pay the USA firm according to a tier system on a "no cure, no fee" basis, starting at US$20 million if the plane is found within the first 5,000 sq km.

"The underwater search has eliminated most of the high probability areas yielded by reconstructing the aircraft's flight path and the debris drift studies conducted in the past 12 months have identified the most likely area with increasing precision".

He said the primary mission by the USA exploration firm is to identify the location of the wreckage and or both of the flight recorders, namely the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR) and Flight Data Recorder (FDR).

The MH370 debris could furnish clues to events on board before the aircraft crashed.

The new search mission involves eight Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs), capable of operating in water depths up to 6000 metres.

After combined efforts by the governments of Australia, China and Malaysia failed to locate the vanished aircraft, the new search will be carried out in a remote stretch of the Indian Ocean west of Australia.

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"That means they are willing to search the area of 25,000 square kilometres pointed out by the expert group near the Australian waters". A multimillion-dollar search in a remote part of the southern Indian Ocean yielded no concrete clues as to the whereabouts of the jet.

"It is our duty to look for answers and the plane, and as of today the government has chose to go ahead with the search", he told The Malaysian Insighter.

The governments of Malaysia, China and Australia spent roughly $157 million over the course of a almost three year search with little success outside of washed up debris believed to have come from the aircraft.

The Malaysian government and USA based ocean infinity are working on a contract that is expected to be finalized in the coming days.

MH370 disappeared over the South China Sea with 239 people on board in March 2014.

Liow said the payment, which will be borne by the government, is subject to the coverage area of the wreckage, which was agreed to four divisions.

Based on radar and satellite communications, the plane was calculated to have plunged into the southern Indian Ocean, sparking a massive hunt led by Australia.

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