Editor in chief:
CLARA MOSCHINI

Will a private company unveil the mystery of the disappeared Malaysia airplane?

It will resume searches by autonomous underwater vehicles

Ocean Infinity, an overseas company specialized in collecting high resolution geophysical data on the seabed, today announced that the Government of Malaysia accepted its proposal to continue the search for the B-777-200ER aircraft of Malaysia Airlines, flight MH370, which disappeared on March 8, 2014 with 239 people on board, while it was en route between the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, in Malaysia, and that of Beijing-Capital, in China. After months and months of searches, the finding of some parts gave credit to the hypothesis that the aircraft sunk in a certain circumscribed but vast area of the Indian Ocean.

To better understand the scope of the researches that involved 14 Countries, just think that as of March 16, 2014, 43 boats, 58 aircraft, and 10 Chinese satellites were involved. Moreover, a company specialized in the production of satellite images made the images of the areas involved in the research activities available to volunteers on a special website; as of March 15, volunteers were over two million and had produced more than 600,000 reports. Since then the wreck of the aircraft still rests with its tragic load of human remains, presumably at the bottom of the Indian Ocean, waiting for someone to unveil the mystery of its disappearance on which the most varied hypotheses flourished.

The search of Ocean Infinity will initially focus on the area identified by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. The "Seabed Constructor" ship is now close to the research area, the same company reports; this will allow an imminent start of operations. The project should last for 90 days. The company has assumed the economic risk of the research, it will be paid only if the wreckage of the aircraft will be located.

"Although there can be no guarantees of a reliable location of the wreck, we believe that our multiple self-operating systems that work simultaneously are suitable for this task. I wish our team good luck in their efforts, and I sincerely hope that we will be able to help provide some answers to the many people affected by this tragedy", said Oliver Plunkett , CEO of Ocean Infinity.

Up to eight autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV), capable of operating in deep waters from 5 to 6000 meters, will be used in the searches. Such AUVs are "free flight", which means that during operations they will not be tied to the offshore vessel. The ability to operate unlimited independent missions allows the AUVs to deepen and collect superior quality data, making this technology ideal for the research. They will be equipped with lateral scan sonars, multibeam echosounder, sub-bottom profiler, HD camera, conductivity / temperature / depth sensor, self-compensating magnetometer, synthetic aperture sonar and water turbidity sensor.

Clamos - 1209527
World Aeronautical Press Agency
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