#MH370: China satellite spots floating object in south Indian Ocean 72×43 feet

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Good morning:

The Lexington-Herald Leader is reporting this morning,

China’s State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense said on its website that a Chinese satellite took an image of an object 22 meters (72 feet) by 13 meters (43 feet) around noon Tuesday.

The image location was about 120 kilometers (75 miles) south of where an Australian satellite viewed two objects two days earlier. The larger object was about as long as the one the Chinese satellite detected.

“The news that I just received is that the Chinese ambassador received a satellite image of a floating object in the southern corridor and they will be sending ships to verify,” Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters Saturday.

The Saturday search did not turn up anything.

A cyclone, Gillian, is moving into the area.

9 Responses to #MH370: China satellite spots floating object in south Indian Ocean 72×43 feet

  1. Robert Hein says:

    Look, I do not know if you people have ever looked at a google earth image of your own home, but I can not only identify the cars in my driveway, but also see the lawnmower in my backyard and clearly read craftsman on the 21″ deck of the mower. I know they say there were no satellites in position for that kind resolution, but how long, or how much would it take to reposition one? I grew up in the 60’s, I have seen the U2 images from the Russian and Cuban overflys, How long or how much would it take to route a U2 or a SR-71 (I believe there is still one operational) over the area? Or how about a drone, they can reportedly remain airborne for 2-3 days without refueling, Why can we not see more accurate or resolute images of this area then we were capable of producing 50 years ago? And what about the fisherman that said they witnessed an overfly by a large airliner that were immediately dismissed by the media as unreliable as they came from human witnesses? I have been listening to CNN for 33 days now and the only thing that has changed is the color of that British aviation experts tie.

  2. towerflower says:

    Lynn, you have 2 totally different situations here in your examples. Air France had a suspected frozen pitot tube, this supplies airspeed to the pilots. It was only a contributing factor in the Air France crash with the pilots also getting blame for responding incorrectly. Also with a pitot tube issue the autopilot disengages and did so in the Air France crash. The 777 has 3 pitot tubes and the airplane is known for redundancy in many systems. Pitot tubes are also now required to be heated on all commercial aircraft.

    With your link they didn’t say the issue was for the pitot tunes but an online computer system. A backup system showed correct information. A B777 could fly itself and the bad computer was sending signals to correct a problem that didn’t exist which created a problem. The Aircraft also has pilot overrides for the throttles which cancelled out the bad instructions. As a result of that issue it was mandated that the backup system must be operational for flight since they were never able to figure out the primary computer’s problem.

    But none of these would explain the airplane flying for several hours after whatever event took place. It also doesn’t explain the loss of several key avionics and radios silence. Whatever happened it affected the crew and it’s passengers while the plane continued to fly.

  3. Lynn says:

    Guess I’m here to pick your brains with a theory my husband mentioned about Flight 370. I googled a bit and think his theory might hold water.

    He is not a pilot. He was an electrician, but did 21 yrs in the Navy assigned to the P-3 Orion. He mentioned a problem with a blocked pitot tube on one flight (mud daubbers, although it’s usually ice) and wondered if the Boeing 777 has these tubes.

    Turns out they do. I found an article from early 2010 that said the FAA confirmed that there had been eight such incidents on a Boeing 777. More than the 767 and 747. After more googling, I see where the Air France Airbus crash turned out to be a pitot tube.

    The below link gives an easier read for laymen like myself about flight instrument reading and failure. It is about a 777 in 2005 leaving Perth that had similar issues. Flying at 38,000 and then the autopilot kicks in and climbs to 41,000 because of improper readings.
    http://www.airlinesafety.com/faq/777DataFailure.htm

  4. If the two satellite photos depict the same object, it drifted 75 miles in a day.

    That could mean it has drifted approximately 300 miles from its location on Tuesday, assuming it’s still floating.

    Assuming the object is from #MH370, the crash site might be approximately 750 miles in the opposite direction from the location of the object on Tuesday.

    (I am thinking of drawing a straight line between the locations of the 2 sightings and extending it in both directions to approximate the location of the floating object for the next search and the location of the crash site)

    • Malisha says:

      Why? Do things float in straight lines in the ocean?

      • No, not necessarily. Ocean currents curve and have faster moving sections on the outside. They also form eddies. Experts in oceanography can describe it better than I can.

        The surface also is affected by wind.

        I should have added that I would use a compass to scribe two circles, one from each location that is a multiple of 75 miles times the number of days since the crash (75×10=750 miles) and since the second sighting until tomorrow’s search (75×5=375 miles).

        Adjustments should be made depending on weather conditions to select two areas to search. One will be for the crash and the other will be to find the floating object.

        Focus on finding the object first to determine if it’s from the plane.

        If it is, then use sonar and robot subs to search for the crash site.

        Sorry, I was trying to keep it simple.

  5. China’s Xinhua news agency is reporting:

    BEIJING, March 22 (Xinhua) — Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said on Saturday China had informed Malaysia and Australia soon after a Chinese satellite spotted a large object possibly related to missing flight MH370.

    Satellite imagery shows a 22-meter-long, 13-meter-wide object in the southern Indian Ocean, the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) confirmed Saturday.

    /snip/

    Captured by the high-definition earth observation satellite “Gaofen-1” at around 12 a.m. on March 18 Beijing Time, the imagery spotted the object at 44 degrees, 57 minutes south latitude, and 90 degrees, 13 minutes east longitude, in the southern Indian Ocean, the SASTIND said.

    The location of the suspicious object is along the southern corridor missing flight MH370 might have taken, and about 120 km south by west from the location of a suspicious object Australia found before.

  6. This object is very close to the same size and shape of the object spotted by Australian radar the previous day (Monday).

    The locations are about 75 miles apart.

    Whether the two satellite photos depict the same object and whether that object is still floating is unknown.

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