Pings are “absolutely” from Flight 370, CNN aviation expert says

CNN aviation expert David Soucie just told Anderson Cooper that the most recent pings investigators have been hearing are “absolutely without a question” from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370′s black boxes.

I promised not to do any updates until there was actual news.  I think we’re in update territory.

Basically, what’s happened is that an Australian Navy ship towing US equipment heard pinging over a two-hour period, then turned around to triangulate the location, and heard another 13 minutes of pinging.  There’s been no word yet on whether that was enough data to determine the location of the source.

During the two-hour period the pinging slowly got stronger, then slowly got weaker.  That is consistent with it being a point-source sitting in the water, and a ship approaching it and then moving away from it.

This happened on Sunday.

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - MARCH 14, 2014: two kids signing a billboard for the safe return of Malaysia Airlines MH370 which went missing on March 8 2014. MH370 remains missing to date. cjmac / Shutterstock.com

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA – MARCH 14, 2014: two kids signing a billboard for the safe return of Malaysia Airlines MH370 which went missing on March 8 2014. MH370 remains missing to date. cjmac / Shutterstock.com

According to Soucie, there is nothing in nature, such as a whale, that could produce those sounds, once a second, over a two-hour period.  The spokesman for the US pacific fleet Commander William Marks was trying to keep his optimism under check, but he seemed to admit to CNN that it was hard to come up with another good explanation for the pings, other than it being Flight 370′s black boxes.

CBS says it could take days to confirm whether the pings are from the flight’s black box.

Part of the problem in finding the black boxes, even with the pings, was raised by someone on Twitter. What happens if the black boxes are moving?  How could they move, you ask?  If the aircraft did a water landing, and part of it remained intact, the black boxes could be inside that part of the plane, rather than on their own. Now, what if it’s a part of the plane that’s more buoyant, such as a part containing luggage or something else containing air? That might make that piece of the wreckage not sink entirely, and thus flow with the ocean currents underwater, but above the ocean floor. Also, because signals underwater are erratic, this too makes it harder to triangulate.

Flight 370 has been missing for 32 days, but CNN’s experts are saying it’s still possible that the batteries could operate for another week. It’s also possible that the batteries wore out two weeks ago, if they weren’t stored properly (and CNN had earlier reports about improper storage of black boxes at Malaysian airports).

The Chinese also claim to have heard some pings this weekend, but the experts seem to be discounting the Chinese leads.

And while the next step would be sending in the underwater vehicles, my understanding is that those vehicles ride near the ocean floor and actually “look” sideways for the black box and the wreckage using sonar.  And they only travel 6 miles per hour.  The experts say there is no rush to deploy those vehicles, as the seemingly more efficient search method is to keep looking for those pings, and triangulate them before the batteries run out.

And just reiterate something I wrote about in my previous article about the unmanned vehicles used during the Air France disaster off of Brazil, debris from that crash was discovered 24 hours after the crash. That permitted researchers to then use the unmanned sonar vehicles to slowly search the bottom, and even then it took two years to find the black boxes.

It’s now been over a month since the plane presumably crashed. That means any wreckage we eventually find on the water not tell us much of anything as to where the plane went down. And without knowing where it went down, it’s not practical using the unmanned vehicles – unless we can triangulate the pings.

More from CNN here.


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Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

Share This Post

  • Guest

    Will you please read the following report in full

    Flight 370: The Straw That Breaks the Cabal’s Back?

    http://divinecosmos.com/start-here/davids-blog/1159-flight-370

    though you may not be familiar with the material as you read it in full I hope you see the connections and possible evidence that leads to the possible truth behind the missing Malasian flight mh-370, if you find this article credible I urge you to look deeper and share with others

  • matt

    Convienant that the plane goes down near Perth Australia. Whats there you ask only the American consulate. Coincidence…. or target? Dodging radar communications turned off. Doesnt sound like a routine flight, especially when it flew in the OPPOSITE direction! ! I’m not a conspiracy buff, but ive been following intently on this because of how bizarre it is. Nobody wants to point fingers until there is proof thats all

  • Love MachineArmada

    Will you please read the following report in full

    Flight 370: The Straw That Breaks the Cabal’s Back?

    http://divinecosmos.com/start-here/davids-blog/1159-flight-370

    though you may not be familiar with the material as you read it in full I hope you see the connections and possible evidence that leads to the possible truth behind the missing Malasian flight mh-370, if you find this article credible I urge you to look deeper and share with others

  • MingTheMerciless

    A read an article and the author says the pings they are picking up are from a black box but not from flight 370. The pings that are being picked up are to cover a greater plan that the plan landed. So it goes like this.. Fast forward a month after the plane was not found and the narrative will be: we received pings from flight 370, the battery died and now we cannot locate the plane as it has been lost forever in the deep blue. I think it sounds far fetched but given all the misinformation, something is not right with this entire event.

  • Aceman

    I read about the world looking to change the rules of who is in charge of a major international airplane disaster. They said it is an old rule from United Nation that the country that the plane belongs takes charge. This should change quickly for the safety of the all passengers who flies in an airplane. I think if it is an international airlines, there should be an international body or committee that is in charge no matter where the mishap happens. This organization must have all the experts and people with the knowledge of how to manage and coordinate the task of search and rescue. This international organization must be accepted by all countries that has their own airlines. They must signed a treaty and pay a due each year to keep this organization ready to help them in case of a crisis. Any airlines that do not sign up with this organization must not be allow to sell tickets on the websites or to fly internationally to member’s countries. There must be a certification that all international airlines must be insured and adhere to all rules of the international safety. Passengers will feel more safe this way. Why don’t someone bring this topic up!.

  • milli2

    Nah, they’ll just transfer over to Fox News.

  • BillFromDover

    Make that Wolf?

  • BillFromDover

    “…are absolutely without a question” from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370′s black boxes.”

    And if they’re not, will we have one less panel expert? Please, God…

  • Badgerite

    O’Reilly could look in the mirror then. Problem solved.

  • lynchie

    what’s your problem

  • Tone

    No one grinds a story like CNN.

  • cole3244

    i will believe it when i see it and this seems to be very unclear to me.

  • Obamatronzombie

    So John Aravosis is holding off and waiting for hard information. He’snot jumping to conclusions or making unfounded accusation. Like any good investigative reporter, he looks to CNN and the NYT and puts it on his blog. He hates FoxNews, but the best thing that’s happened to him is years is being allowed to rant on the hated Faux News. Oh, the thought of becoming a “Contributor”. How about FoxNews Gay Marriage Editor? Combs is getting old, and O’Reilly needs someone really obnoxious to abuse.

  • TonyT

    CNN’s cried wolf so many times I’ll believe they found the black box when I see it. Thanks for only doing real news updates on this.

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