Chinese ship with advanced sonar to help with search for MH370

CANBERRA, Australia - A Chinese ship equipped with advanced sonar equipment will soon join the search for the Malaysian airliner believed to have crashed in the southern Indian Ocean almost two years ago, an official said on Friday.

See Full Article

The Dong Hai Jiu 101 will leave Singapore on Sunday to join the hunt for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 over a 120,000-square- kilometre expanse of deep seabed by late February, Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss said.

The ship brings the state-of-the-art Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS), which some experts say is more accurate than standard 75 kHz side-scan sonar devises that have been used to scan most of the area searched so far.

With standard acoustic sonar, the image becomes less clear the farther a seabed object is from the equipment. But with SAS, the image remains sharp regardless of an object's distance.

Fugro Survey, the Dutch underwater survey company hired by Australia to find the Boeing 777, has defended its choice of sonar and maintains the search has been thorough.

Fugro search director Paul Kennedy has described SAS as developing technology with some questions about its reliability. Because the search was in such a remote region, Fugro opted for established technology with ready supplies of spare parts.

The Dong Hai Jiu 101 will join two Fugro ships, Furgo Discovery and Furgo Equator, which will continue to search with standard sonar equipment. The Fugro Discovery lost its sonar unit plus 4.5 kilometres of cable at the weekend when the ship towed the equipment into an underwater volcano. The ship was headed back to the Australian port of Fremantle to collect new cable to deploy with a spare sonar unit.

A fourth ship, Havila Harmony, is equipped with a manoeuvrable deep-sea drone that has been fitted with a camera and high-resolution sonar for searching difficult terrain and for taking a closer look at potential clues. The drone was also recently damaged when it struck a fish net but has been repaired.

The ProSAS-60 sonar equipment aboard the Chinese ship will be operated by marine services companies Phoenix International Holdings, based in Maryland, and Seattle-based Hydrospheric Solutions. Both companies gained experience searching for Flight 370 when they operated Go Phoenix, a ship which was contracted by Malaysia to take part in the search for eight months until June last year.

More than 85,000 square kilometres of the search area have been scoured since late 2014. The Chinese ship is the first time China has agreed to share the financial cost of the search with Malaysia and Australia. Truss on Friday thanked China for the contribution.

Most of the 239 people aboard Flight 370 were Chinese.

The plane vanished on March 8, 2014, after mysteriously flying far off course during a flight from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to Beijing. A wing flap found in July on the other side of the Indian Ocean when it washed up on Reunion Island is the only debris recovered.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Police seek public's help in locating Ontario woman last seen in 1996

    Canada News CTV News
    BECKWITH TOWNSHIP, Ont. -- Provincial police are requesting the public's assistance in locating a woman who was reported missing more than five years ago. They say Carole Dianne Roy was reported missing on May 23, 2012, but investigators say the last confirmed sighting of Roy was on Oct. Source
  • R.I. lawmaker says she was told sexual favours would help career

    World News CTV News
    PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- A Rhode Island lawmaker says a higher-ranking legislator told her sexual favours would allow her bills to go further. Democratic Rep. Teresa Tanzi told the Providence Journal that she's among the many women who have experienced sexual assault or harassment. Source
  • Judge in Hawaii blocks latest version of Trump's travel ban

    World News CTV News
    HONOLULU -- A federal judge in Hawaii blocked the Trump administration Tuesday from enforcing its latest travel ban, just hours before it was set to take effect. U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson granted Hawaii's request to temporarily block the policy that was to be implemented starting early Wednesday. Source
  • British spy chief says 'intense U.K. terrorist threat' is evolving rapidly

    World News CBC News
    Britain's domestic intelligence chief warned during a rare public speech Tuesday that the terrorist threat the country faces has accelerated at an alarming pace and is worse now than at any time in his 34-year career. Source
  • 'Absolute genuine kindness': RCMP officer replaces girls' tricycles after theft

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    BLACKS HARBOUR, N.B. — A New Brunswick Mountie is being praised for an act of kindness towards two young girls heartbroken by the theft of their tricycles. The Curtis family of Blacks Harbour, a small seaside village west of Saint John, noticed their daughters’ two tricycles missing from their driveway last week. Source
  • Dow Jones hits 23,000 mark for the first time

    World News CBC News
    The Dow Jones Industrial Average breached the 23,000-mark for the first time on Tuesday, powered by strong earnings from UnitedHealth Group and Johnson & Johnson. The blue-chip index has surpassed four similar 1,000-point milestones this year, indicating investor faith in the bull-run despite lofty stock valuations. Source
  • ISIS vows Russia World Cup slaughter

    World News Toronto Sun
    From the rubble of its crumbling caliphate, Islamic State is vowing to unleash bloodshed at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. ISIS has swamped social media with photos of the front of the Volgograd Arena in southern Russia, where some of the action will take place. Source
  • Finance Minister Bill Morneau faces calls for ethics investigation over assets [Video]

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    OTTAWA — Finance Minister Bill Morneau says he’d be willing to make changes to his financial affairs if asked to do so by the federal ethics watchdog as pressure mounts over why he hasn’t put his substantial assets in a blind trust. Source
  • Residential school survivors can proactively preserve documents: Bennett

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA -- Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett says there is a proactive effort underway to tell residential school survivors that their records can still be preserved if they so choose. The move comes after the Supreme Court of Canada ruled earlier this month that records detailing the abuse of former students can eventually be destroyed. Source
  • Google sister company makes 'bold bet' with new tech-focused neighbourhood 'Sidewalk Toronto'

    Canada News CBC News
    Waterfront Toronto has announced that Sidewalk Labs, Google's city-building sister company, will be its partner in creating a new tech-focused neighbourhood on the eastern Toronto waterfront. Reports began circulating last spring that Sidewalk Labs, a subsidiary of Google parent Alphabet Inc. Source