Guest Post: What We Know About MH370, and What We Would Like to Know

UPDATE 5/21/14: The families of missing MH370 passengers have released a fascinating document presenting their own analysis of the preliminary report issued by the Malaysian government’s Ministry of Transport, including their own assessment of what we know and what we’d like to know. Link: Analysis of the Preliminary Report on MH370 Incident, May 20 2014

by Michael Exner

[Note: The totality of what we know about the fate of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 consists of a series of electronic handshake “pings” that were received by an Inmarsat satellite in the hours before the plane disappeared for good. Unfortunately, the authorities have steadfastly refused to release the full data set to the public, and there is an ongoing dispute between Inmarsat and Malaysia as to who exactly has the data and who is authorized to release it. According to CNN, a source within Inmarsat has said that the company released satellite ping data amounting to just 14 numbers to Malaysian authorities, along with documentation explaining their methods for analyzing the data. Here Michael Exner, Chairman of the Board of Radiometrics Corporation, weights in on that claim. — Jeff Wise]

In fact, we know there are at least 51 numbers, and here’s why. The BFO chart [released on March 25 by the Malaysian government as page two of “Annex I” accompanying the Inmarsat report — ed] shows 12 times and 12 frequencies. That’s 24 numbers.

Then, on April 29, there was a photo in Beijing that showed that there were more handshakes, and ACARS messages that preceded the first handshake on the BFO chart, but there were no BFO values given in the Beijing meeting with the families. But the fact that they had the angles proves they had the times and the BFO values. Thus, we know of at least 17 events for which they have Time, BFO and Angle (or time delays). That is 51 numbers total.

We have assembled the following data from two sources. The “BFO Data” provided in the March 25th AAIB ANNEX I Chart and the photo taken in Beijing on April 29, 2014.

Exner table

Note that the numbers above represent our best estimates based on digitized paper graphs and photos. The true resolution is less than that inferred by the number of digits. Apparently, the statements about “…only 14 numbers…” are in reference to the last 7 BFO frequencies and last 7 elevation angles, which the official investigation team is focused on. But all the data from the other events are also valuable for the calibration of the other data. Those first 10 events are also very important.

Until April 29, 2014, it was believed that there were only 12 events recorded. The BFO chart has only 12 events. Then the photo taken of a chart projected on the wall in Beijing on 2014-04-29 showed that they had more data than previously known. That immediately raised the question, why didn’t they disclose all the data sooner, instead of only the 12 events disclosed on March 25, 2014? How much more do they have that has not been disclosed?

The photo proves that there were at least 17 total recorded handshake/ping events. For each event, there was a time, a BFO value and a time delay (elevation angle). It is important to note that elevation angle is NOT an observable parameter. It is a derived value, based on a time delay observation. The elevation angles are calculated from the time delays and several assumptions about the geometry of the earth, etc. So elevation angles are not raw data. They are derived products that depend on data and assumptions. We prefer the raw data, not Inmarsat’s derived work products.

In addition, there were 12 “Predicted North” and 12 “Predicted South” BFO values.

The missing metadata is really important. It’s more important than filling in the missing numbers. The existing BFO data in particular is very arcane and ambiguous. Without much better descriptions of what the BFO values mean, experts are guessing. Experts are even arguing over the question of whether the BFO values need to be interpreted as positive or negative Doppler values because the document is silent on that critical question. Another example of the missing metadata is a clear explanation of the so called Predicted Track data. It has everyone totally confused.

To Richard Quest: No one thinks there are reams of data. But there are more numbers than 14, as the description above clearly demonstrates. All we want are the missing numbers, and a clear explanation of how to interpret the BFO values (metadata). We also want the raw time delay values, not derived angles. And we want the numbers in a tabular, numeric format, not graphs designed for the general public. This what we mean by “give us all the data.”



139 thoughts on “Guest Post: What We Know About MH370, and What We Would Like to Know”

  1. How many times have we asked that question? My view is that in muslim countries noone is too worried about planes being crashed into things. It’s an infidel issue. They just aren’t wound up like us and noone would want to make that call either. Malaysians did nothing, Indons saw nothing??? I’m not at all surprised.

  2. I’m taking the step of posting Simon’s remarks in here from the previous post(Number 504 and lucky last) as I’m not sure everyone has seen it. I’ve never done these sums before…amyone??

    Simon Gunson
    Posted May 30, 2014 at 8:55 AM
    Something Nobody seems to give much thought too is the claim MH370 dropped to 5,000ft and flew west through the Straits of Malacca is physically impossible within the timeframe available, just 39 minutes .

    At low altitudes, a Boeing 777 is aerodynamically limited how fast it can fly.

    Butterworth Radar saw the unidentified aircraft over Pelau Perak at precisely 18:03 UTC flying NW from the southern tip of Penang (77nm). From there to Kota Bharu was 133nm and from that point to BITOD where last seen by transponder return at 17:24 UTC was 127nm, total track distance = 337nm.

    VMO for a Boeing 777 below 10,000ft is 329 KIAS/0.625M and assuming 30 deg C for sea level temperature that translates to about 365kt (True Airspeed) TAS to cover 337nm in just 39 minutes.

    To cover that distance MH370 would have to have flown at 518kt TAS, something quite impossible flying at 5,000ft, or even at 12,000ft.

    MH370 could not have flown this route in the time prescribed at 518kt TAS at altitudes less than 32,000ft and in that case would have been high enough for half a dozen radar stations to spot it.

    This also disproves the claim that MH370 flew low over Kota Bharu. Indeed if any aircraft did fly low over Kota Bharu on Malaysia’s northeast coast it was not MH370.

    It is time the whole claim that MH370 turned back and flew west was challenged. It simply does not stack up.

  3. I think it’s generally accepted that all the early reports about altitude change after the initial deviation are false, as the plane was traveling at an average ground speed of around 500 knots with light winds aloft. It must have been traveling at flight levels the whole time. I don’t see grounds to doubt that there was an actual deviation to the west, though.

  4. @Rhett thanks for the appreciation 🙂
    I think, I will clear this one up, since it can’t be solved by sheer logic like the dog/helicopter story.
    @Gene, you missed the clue, that the Elusive Ironman clocked in quite a bit faster than he normally does after the bike race. The reason for this was, that he had pulled a muscle a couple of days before the race, which didn’t allow him to run, but he could still swim and ride a bike. So, he planned to do only two disciplins and drop out after the bike race. Since he didn’t need any reserves for the marathon, he didn’t hold back, thus being faster than normally after two disciplins.He did his thing and walked calmly away from the race, without giving a distress call or something like that, since he wasn’t stranded midway and didn’t need assistance. But since he didn’t make a request for help, he was assumed to be still in the race, maybe with a non functioning transponder. So, a virtual projection was made from his actual performance so far plus his marathon performance in Lanzarote from last year. This virtual projection gave him a comfortable lead in the ongoing race. Basically, they had done the same thing as the controllers of Malaysian Airlines, who assumed, that the plane wasn’t in any serious trouble since there was no distress call, and they assumed further a virtual flight path on their monitors was real, though I will never understand, how they could assume the plane being over Cambodia was perfectly ok.
    As to my husband, he had met the guy two days before at the official pasta party. He is also German. They started chatting and the guy told my husband about his plan to do only two disciplins for fun and then drop out. So, when I told him the name of the mystery guy, he knew immediately what had happened and that he had made the third place, even if it wasn’t official just yet. In the end it wasn’t even important for the Hawaii qualification, since the first two dropped out and he got the first slot. But he got onto the podium and a nice trophy at the awards party. He is as happy as a clam, because Hawaii is the Ironpeople’s holy grail.
    Gene, thanks for the tips re: Hawaii. I also prefer privat rentals. I dislike big hotels, but I guess, my husband will prefer one near the start of the race. But I might get my way, if we switch to another island.

  5. @Jeff, agreed, the early claimed altitude changes are unlikely since the plane was flying at a fast ground speed. But there must’ve been altitude changes near Penang and over the Strait of Malacca, since there was the attempt of the copilot’s cellphone to connect with the Penang tower and the plane was lost from primary radar screens for some time. It returned onto the screens for a short time before it was out of primary radar reach – according to the Malaysian authorities. While the attempted connection of the cell phone was’t in the preliminary report, it was confirmed as I distinctly remember by the telephone company. Maybe, that’s part of the criminal investigation.
    Anyway, the plane must’ve done some altitude changes for whatever reason.

  6. @Matty, these calculations how fast the plane could’ve flown at what altitude over Malacca Strait are terribly inexact for people outside the official investigation, since the times given by the Malaysians, where the plane was when, are terribly inexact. And a few miles and a few minutes do really make a big difference as to what is possible and what isn’t, since we’re just talking about what happened over Malacca Strait.

  7. Simon Gunson seems to assume, the claim was made, that the plane flew at low altitude all the way over the Street of Malacca. The Malaysians never claimed that. They said, they lost it from their primary radar screens for a while, before it turned up again, only to vanish for good a couple of minutes later. Since they never said precisely where and when it was gone from primary radar (we got only a fuzzy picture), those calculations of Simon Gunson don’t hold up.
    As to throw out the claim, that it turned West completely, then we have to accuse Inmarsat of having been in cahouts with the Malaysian authorities in a Grand Cover Up. While it’s easy to believe, that the Malaysians are hiding something, maybe just levels of incompetence, I can’t see Inmarsat’s engineers being part of a conspiracy.

  8. Well this caught my attention here we have our own )military making statements that are later called speculative ,you be the judge ….
    “Mike Dean’s comments today were speculative and premature, as we continue to work with our partners to more thoroughly understand the data acquired by the Towed Pinger Locator,” U.S. Navy spokesman Chris Johnson said in a statement, referring to Australia and Malaysia.

  9. @Littlefoot I am long-time sojourner of Hawaii. It has the cleanest oceans and air on earth, and the sea life is amazing. I consider the North Shore of Kauai my spiritual home.

    You and Gene are on it: there is absolutely no point in staying in a hotel in Hawaii when it is crowded with vacation rentals. or have 100s of places for rent.

    If you do indeed decide to visit another island, a good choice would be Kauai. I built and later sold a house there that is available as a vacation rental. You can view the house, here: It’s a bit over a mile to the end of the road, making the house one of the top 200 isolated houses on Earth. The town of Hanalei (where Puff the Magic Dragon once lived) is a but a 15 minute, waterfall-filled drive away down the Seven Bridges Road (the Eagles). There aren’t any hotels out past Hanalei, only one low rise townhouse operation. The place is really hard to beat in terms of natural Hawaii.

    If you do decide to go to whatever other island, visit at the close of your trip and simply transit the airport (i.e., do not go into Honolulu) from your local flight to your international flight. This is incredibly more convenient versus going back into Waikiki for your last night, where all you will do is talk about unpacking and packing and airport transits for 12-24 hours.

    Fundamental to visiting the Big Island is taking in the volcano; stay as nearby as possible at least one night. The key is to know where the lava is flowing, so that you can take in this most incredible site. The visitor center is usually NOT the place to take in the lava flow. Best is when it is flowing on the far east side of the park where there is a little known access point into a condemned residential area. There is a sign that reads No Entrance Private Property; ignore this sign. The road, frequented by local fisherman and more enterprising tourists such as yourself, takes you up on top of the lava flow and back down to pavement and up on to the flow once again before emerging out on the flow plane. Go in the late afternoon to catch the glow of the flow. You can walk right up to it (I have watched people shovel it into iron cups on chains for fire dances), and the ground beneath your feet often will glow red through the cracks in the hardened lava. It’s an incredible experience, not to be missed.

    If the lava is now flowing into the sea, there are also now Lava Boat evening cruises. Try to find a sailboat (cat or monohull) rather than your standard booze cruise motor yacht.

    Car Rental: there is only one car that is perfect for either island: a Jeep Wrangler soft top. They blend in better with local traffic, and they make driving up on the lava bed or Kauai’s backroad pig hunting tracks (great natural scenery) a breeze. If you don’t want a jeep, be sure to at least get a convertible. Hawaii is convertible heaven, and a Mustang or Sebring will do you well.

    I found a place for a friend to stay on the Big island that looked very interesting, if you are into B&Bs: It’s also a coffee plantation.

    If you are into snorkeling, not far from the Captain Cook monument you can easily find yourself swimming with spinner dolphins when the pods come into shore to rest. Captain Cook town (pop. c. 3,000) is generally a beautiful, convenient place to stay. I don’t know about its location in terms of the start of the race, however.

    As for your husband, that’s awesome that he qualified for the race and the trip. Have fun!

  10. @Rand, thank you so much for the detailed info♡. I will check all your links out, especially about the house.
    The trip is still some month away, but I’m excited already.

  11. @Rand Hey howzit? Here we are north versus south again… At least neither of us are advocating the Royal Coconut coast! The north is definitely nice country though!

    So has this updated release of data revealed new info or has it just muddied the waters that much more?

  12. @Littlefoot Not fair! This was rigged. I want an independent review panel to investigate this.

  13. Who is mike dean ?why did the higher ups over ride his statement ? Did mike let the truth out but the higher ups don’t want the probable reality of false pings exposed?
    “Earlier on Thursday, CNN quoted Michael Dean, the U.S. Navy’s civilian deputy director of ocean engineering, and said authorities now almost universally believe the pings did not come from the plane’s onboard data or cockpit voice recorders.

    However, the U.S. Navy dismissed the reported comments.

    “Mike Dean’s comments today were speculative and premature, as we continue to work with our partners to more thoroughly understand the data acquired by the Towed Pinger Locator,” U.S. Navy spokesman Chris Johnson said in a statement, referring to Australia and Malaysia.”

  14. @Gene, I concede, that this couldn’t be solved by pure logic alone. What the race management did was certainly a bit whacky. But the thought process was essentially the same as with MAS, thankfully with no dire consequences. But I was quite fair. I mentioned, that Charly the spitzdog had an impeccable alibi, and I did tell you twice, that the Elusive Ironman clocked in quite a bit faster than normally after the bike race. That’s unusual with seasoned athlets. Of course he could’ve been on PED and felt so guilty about it, that he dropped out after two disciplines. Since his name isn’t Lance Armstrong (who btw wanted to start a third comeback as an Ironman in Hawaii two years ago), that’s a distinct possibility. Therefore I won’t contradict you for 10 more days. So, you actually have to post something controversial during that time, otherwise it’s meaning less. 😉
    As to the the released so called ‘raw data’:
    I plowed through Duncan Steel’s latest entry plus 75 comments, and got away with the impression, that the inner circle has pretty much discarded the idea of the plane having gone North. Even the idea, that the ping rings might be off by hundreds of km, due to a possible reboot and subsequent recalibration of the system around 18:30 has been dropped, since the possible effect should be small. This doesn’t mean, that Inmarsat is completely off the hook, because the velocity of the plane is still hotly debated, and that question is most certainly important for defining future search areas.
    But don’t take my word for this and read for yourself, if you have time. But I have the sneaky feeling, that despite this inexplicable secrecy and incompleteness of the data, Inmarsat doesn’t come out of this so badly. What really hurts them in the public eye, besides their clumsy info politics, is the disaster with the now discarded underwater pings, since most people, who aren’t experts or didn’t follow the story from the beginning, can’t really distinguish between ping rings and underwater pings. Ping is ping, and if one set of pings proved to be false, who knows about the rest of the pings. And I can’t blame them. It is confusing. The trust can only be regained, if Inmarsat is alloed to come forward with additional data and the all important algorithms.

  15. I attempted to post the following on Duncan’s blog, but it seems that he has shut down the comment section; it may be that he has closed the site for the time being.

    Given that Duncan has ventured into more speculative realms concerning ‘how’ MH370 ended up on a terminal flight trajectory to wherever, I would like to follow up on my hypothesis that this was perhaps a two-stage event where: 1. the aircraft was intentionally diverted with an intended destination at or around IGARI for reasons other than those that would involve a mechanical/structural malfunction; and 2. at some point in the flight trajectory post-diversion at IGARI and in the vicinity of Malaysian airspace the aircraft experienced a secondary event where it later transitioned to a terminal flight trajectory under non-human flight control; this was initiated at a general geographical location off the coast of Banda Aceh.

    From an aircraft ‘behaviorist’ approach, Bill has summarized the aircraft’s SDU exhibiting the following shortly after it was last detected on Malaysian primary radar at 18:22 UTC:

    “At 18:25, the SDU powered back up and successfully logged back into the Inmarsat satellite-Perth communications network. The log-in sequence itself exchanged data between the airplane and the ground station. The content of those communications has not been released (or mentioned). But, there was not much data transferred from the airplane, thus it is still believed that the ACARS system and other components that might have used the satellite to communicate were not operating.

    “The second telephone call attempt from MAS Ops at 18:39UT was acknowledged by the SDU, but did not connect (was not answered). There is not enough information in the released data to know the conditions of the plane’s voice communication system where the phone should have been ringing.”

    Further indications of a secondary event are perhaps indicated by the statements of supposed witness Katherine Tee (SaucySailor) which could very well be apocryphal or otherwise inaccurate. At face value, however, they are significant in that the “burning aircraft” that she supposedly witnessed (speculated to be at or around 18:50 UTC) would be congruent with a hypothetical time and general location for the initiation of the terminal flight trajectory.

    Katherine Tee’s statements regarding what she witnessed at our around 18:50 UTC are in reasonable proximity to the rebooting of the aircraft SDU or other form of “distress” (Duncan Steel) exhibited by the aircraft in the ping cluster that occurred between 18:25 – 18:29.

    A fire aboard the aircraft disabling the crew that initiated at a specifically unknown time post-diversion at IGARI could indeed produce a transition to a terminal flight trajectory at or around 18:25 UTC under non-human navigation to the point of fuel exhaustion. Likewise, indications that the aircraft was under human-input navigation from the point of diversion at IGARI and while in the vicinity of Malaysian airspace could then be reconciled with that segment of the flight involving a subsequent terminal flight trajectory under non-human navigation.

    As for the two other aircraft that Kathleen provided as visual reference points, I am going to query Katherine whether she could have actually been witnessing relative motion, where the two aircraft could have been moving in a direction other than north. I will also question her further regarding their proximity and ask her whether she can further substantiate the time at which she witnessed the events.

    You can view Kate’s blog, below. I am going to query her on her blog.

  16. In the intervening minutes, it appears that the press has picked up on Katherine Tee’s assertions. I posted the following on her blog just before reading that Fairfax Media in Australia has picked up on her story.


    I will keep this short and sweet.

    I am a frequent contributor at and, two blogs presently quite active in the unofficial search for MH370. A number of the contributors to these sites (myself included to a certain degree) have been quite active is seeking additional data/information regarding the flight from Inmarsat, the Malaysian government, the UK AAIB, Boeing, etc.

    I find what you witnessed quite interesting. In brief, my personal and quite hypothetical view is that MH370 experienced a two-stage event: Phase I. an intentional diversion with human input at waypoint IGARI with an intended destination; followed by Phase II. a secondary external or internal intervention that compromised the flight deck/disabled the flight crew which led to a terminal flight trajectory without further human input (i.e., on auto pilot). From what I can discern, the aircraft exhibited two distinct behavior patterns (flight with human input and flight without), thus the needs to reconcile them with a secondary causal event/process that transitioned the aircraft from Phase I to Phase II.

    What you witnessed at approximately 18:50 UTC is congruent with a cluster of three Classic Aero satcom ‘pings’ that began around 18:25 UTC. The first ping at 18:25 has been described by many as being initiated by the aircraft and indicative of the system rebooting itself; others have indicated a turn or a drastic change in altitude. Duncan Steel some months back said that the ping cluster was indicative of the aircraft being “in some sort of distress.”

    This could be significant, if in fact the aircraft was under human navigation at the point of diversion at IGARI, after which there was some secondary causal event in the vicinity of Malaysian airspace that transitioned the (now compromised) aircraft to a terminal flight trajectory to the southern Indian Ocean. You may very well have witnessed the outcome of whatever secondary event transitioned the aircraft from its first phase (intentional diversion under human navigation) to its second phase (a terminal flight trajectory on auto-pilot without human input).

    I have a couple of questions for you:

    1. What was the relative distance (in terms of flight level disparity or other physical dimension) between the two other aircraft and the ‘burning’ aircraft that you witnessed?
    2. Did the two aircraft appear to be flying in tandem, or were they in two disparate locations on different flight trajectories?
    3. Did you hear relatively loud sounds (engine noise) from any of the aircraft?
    4. Did you detect the two aircraft making any directional changes while you were watching them, or were they on stable flight trajectories?
    5. I know you must be aware of relative motion when witnessing boats on the water and how to discern a bow light from a stern light. I know it may be difficult to recall, but could the two other aircraft ‘appeared’ to have been flying north in relativistic terms when in fact they were traveling/slowing along a wholly different flight trajectory?

    Finally, I would suggest that you do prepare for a level of contact from the media. I would suggest that you line up a friend working in PR to field the phone calls, if and when they come. I would also suggest that you further explore your experience of not coming forward earlier, as this is surely to be questioned, if you are indeed taken further into this matter.

    Good luck, and looking forward to hearing from you.

  17. @Rand, great that you posted a link to Catherine Tee’s blog! I will post another link to the cruiser forum, where she discusses the incident candidly with fellow sailors. If there’s anything to this story, it’s mandatory reading. They discuss it in a very rational way and tease out quite a few facts. Catherine gains a lot of credibility despite her psychological issues she had at the time. Very interesting is, that she saw two OTHER planes as well, flying higher but very near the burning plane and into the opoosite direction -northwards. Since they could pin down Catherine Tee’s yacht’s whereabouts through their log entries, it was possible to check if other commercial aircrafts could’ve been there at this location and time – and they established, that commercial airplanes could not have been there! She also said, that she felt at the time, that the other planes should’ve seen the burning plane for sure, and therefore she wouldn’t need to report the incident. It has to be added that she is a seasoned sky and star gazer because of the many night watches on their yacht.
    Another important thing: They went through the time line with her and established, that the burning plane could NOT have been mh370 if it turned southwards soon after the last primary radar sighting by Malaysia. She saw it about an hour too late (initially she got the time zone mixed up). HOWEVER if the plane made a detour further North to the Andamans and made a U-turn there for whatever reason, the time frame could fit very well.
    Henrik Rydberg and Victor Ianello at are proponents of that solution, since it seems to fit the BFO data very well. And then there’s still Chris McLaughlin’s statement on tv, that the plane turned South over the Andamans. Unfortunately no journo ever asked him, why he said that.Since Siva Govindasamy also stated in his Reuters report, that the plane was spotted over the Andamans, I think that more people should look seriously into that possibility.

  18. Ehh gads, I may have put my foot in my mouth. Littlefoot: was is not established that it was c. 18:50 UTC when Kate witnessed the event? I read this on the cruising blog I thought.

    As for the other aircraft…yes, thus my questions re how they performed . Hopefully, more work can be done with what Kate witnessed. This is the sort of thing that has the potential to flush out corroborating narratives.

  19. @Rand, you have to plow through all the comments. Midways or near the end they established, that she made a mistake. However, I can’t remember now, if this was before or after she reported it. Anyway, the time is very important here. They established, that she only could’ve seen mh370, if it hung around longer in the North than the officially given route from the Malaysian authorities indicates.
    But, as I said, a few guys at championed exactly that scenario because of the very good matches they got with the BFO data. Someone from Duncan’s site started to comment on the cruiser forum as well, hinting at this possibility.

  20. I should add, that when I first read this account in the regular news outlets, I pretty much dismissed it. It was coming too late and the wording of the articles didn’t exactly enhance Catherine’s credibility. I’ve changed my mind completely after reading all the posts at this cruisers forum.
    I can very well relate to the issues she had after 13 month on the ship,doing lonely night watches. That this resulted in marriage issues after a rough crossing, everything being damp and soaked, is hardly surprising. But since she freely admits all this, it makes her more, not less credible IMO. That doesn’t mean of course, that what she saw was really mh370, and she admits that, too.But this story shouldn’t be dismissed. It should be carefully investigated.

  21. Guys ,there’s a new wrinkle !!remember the austrailian ctbto underwater hydrophone monotoring system initially after mh 370 vanishing they said they heard or picked up nothing . upon further review they have heard something .where they heard this is far from “official site” and doesn’t look to match inmarsats data .good luck getting searchers behind this sound .as it’s not where” authorities “say mh 370 rests …see link for ctbto press releases.

  22. @Tdm, I read that, too, it’s intriguing. But this is really dicy. This wold be nowhere near any ping arcs. And the experts said, there are many things like a slight earthquake, which could’ve made the sound. They said, the chances, that this was a plane crash are low.
    On the other hand, we marvelled a couple of weeks ago, if no sound at all means, there wasn’t any plane crash in the Indian Ocean. Again, the scientists said, that doesn’t allow the conclusion, that there was no crash. When the Air France machine crashed, there wasn’t any hydroaccoustic sound either.Apparently under water sounds are very tricky, and it isn’t as straight forward as we non experts might think.
    It will be interesting, if they do further investigations.

  23. I always found it hard to believe that if it went in the Indian Ocean they would hear nothing. How often do they pick up tremors I wonder?? The 9.30 am time is a worry, even allowing for the signal travel time at 1.5km/sec. The assumption has been that the plane speared in right after the half ping? If it crashed in the Indian Ocean, would that sound almost have to be it? Picking up sound under water is easy, sorting it all out is the hard part.

  24. Curtin Uni are going out of their way to be non-controversial here. Giving utmost reverence to the Inmarsat data, but the seismic activity should not be that hard to corroborate, I would have thought?. If it was detectable from out there it would also be detectable from the ping zone, you would think? I always felt, intuitively I admit, that when this was all run and won there would be red faces.

  25. So they picked up a faint tremor south of India, but missed the plane hitting the water under their nose, in the same window as the plane going missing? Should be eminently detectable. When subs launch a torpedo they are normally diving and heading in the opposite direction because there is no way to disguise that rush of compressed air, and you pick it up from thousands of miles.

    As one commentator said a while back – until they find some wreckage it’s all conjecture. Signal bounce times are normally pretty reliable I’m told, but do they know the state of the electronics/computers/modem on the plane? How exactly were they behaving at the time? I think the rings get treated as Newtonian physics when they might be messed up.

  26. Littlefoot

    Well, I may not understand the science of flight but I do know sailing. My husband and I are sailors and I too have had the night watch. After reading her posts along with other comments, I’m still disturbed. The fact that even after all that time she just posted it on the forum and never reported it is not good. Yes, perhaps they would have questioned her credibility but at least it would have added to the other sightings. And not logging it or reporting it once they reached land was ridiculous.I can not imagine reaching land, hearing about a plane crash, and not saying anything. She must have been in a terrible state of mind for that to happen because otherwise it just doesn’t make sense. The sailors I know tend to be information oriented. We have to pay attention to even the smallest details because our lives can depend on it. The only credibility I allow her is the fact that other researchers are believing the plane could have been in that area at the time. Or perhaps I’m just frustrated because she made so many wrong moves. I will continue to rely on information I find here on Jeff’s blog and at Duncansteel. Too much blather out there. And I really have gained a wealth of information reading these. I just wish I understood more of it!

  27. @Littlefoot Seeing as I have free reign without contradiction I shall remain in the north column. I have no logical, rational, or reasonable explanation of this. Just a choice. Perhaps even a belief. I think I’m anchored? Meanwhile in Hillbilly Land my necessary components from Israel have arrived. Woohoo! Or not… The required element to make everything work has not been provided by the general contractor. Let’s see how I can turn this into an Inmarsat analogy… Soooo the Israeli item and associated components are the Inmarsat data or pings. And the required element is the airspeed and to a degree fuel. Without the required element, how well does everything work? Maybe that’s a little too cryptic and I should explain more clearly?

    What I am doing is an irrigation system. This is part of a storm water management and environmental restoration project. Storm water is being diverted into man made ponds and then through a series of “filtering” processes before entering into the local watershed. As part of this trees and shrubs are being planted around the ponds to restore the natural state of the area. My part of this is to provide water for the plant material. Further upstream in the storm water system water is captured and diverted to a service for irrigation reclaiming some of the waste water for use. Because of the nature of the water special filtration was required and this is necessary component from Israel. So now all of this is connected and installed. The plants are all in. Summer heat has begun to arrive. I go to turn on the service from the captured water and there is nothing there. Something is wrong between where it was captured and where my point of connection is. Like Inmarsat, I have all my ping data out there and ready to go, but I don’t have the airspeed/fuel (other info?). No matter how well my system is constructed, how well does it work without the essential element? What’s wrong? Who knows. Something could be plugged. Something could turned off somewhere. Something could be pinching off the line. May not even be connected up above. One very small thing somewhere in the beginning throws everything else down the line into chaos. 😀 Okay so off to find the missing water now and rattle the cages of engineers and general contractors…;-)

  28. Vintage shite from Geoffrey Thomas – and a good example of how a lot of people have their emotions invested in their opinions on MH370. He doesn’t accept that the pings could have come from the ship? And Inmarsat get an enormous plug.

    Becoming extraordinary to me. IF……it crashed into the Indian Ocean off Learmonth, local hydrophones should have heard something, and they did, but it gets ruled out because it doesn’t fit in with Inmarsat. They are now in a position where their own credibility will get hammered if they discard or even query their data. It’s their bedrock, but everyone’s forgotten how tenuous it is. Thomas says the “data is right.”

    My oldest brother, a journalist from way back never really engaged with the plane story – said to me Matthew, at least 90% of what you are hearing about this thing will be wrong. Just tune out till it shows up. Shut up about the f####n plane.

    But I never bought the idea that a 777 hitting the water would be undetectable from Rottnest. No data equals no crash, data equals potential crash. Curtin Uni boxing clever, making sure the media doesn’t play them against Inmarsat(as they will be dying to) but saying enough at the same time. It’s turned into a game of people who believe in INmarsat – which they seem to do with a passion – and those who don’t.


    Some interesting remarks from Curtin scientist – “It has been a very wild ride over the last few months working on this,” Dr Duncan said.

    So Littlefoot’s scoop was correct. And also points to Curtin being very coy, even secretive about it and I now see why.

    And – “The crash of a large aircraft in the ocean would be a high energy event and expected to generate intense underwater sounds.”

    That thinking is echoed by people I know with knowledge of marine acoustics, so why are they so comfortable with the absence of data for the current search zone? These recordings may be the only tangible evidence we have for a crash – and it’s discarded.

  30. As I type this the search is suspended! The pings that were supposedly from mh 370 black boxes actually were not , who’s rushing to families aid to find this plane ?this Bloomberg article sheds some light on this issue of liability .the biggest kicker is with no plane and no definitive answers to what occurred there’s no big liability case to pursue….
    “For survivors to capture significantly greater damages, wreckage would probably have to be located and a narrative of the plane’s demise assembled. Several scenarios have been offered for the flight’s disappearance, including hijacking, intentional downing or an on-board fire. Evidence of any of these could open avenues for family members to sue.”

    Liability —
    : the state of being legally responsible for something : the state of being liable for something

    : something (such as the payment of money) for which a person or business is legally responsible

    : someone or something that causes problems

  31. This is bullshit. Are they saying the plane turned sooner than they originally thought? If so it turned straight through Indonesia. It’s looking like guesswork.

  32. Considering that the Australian govt is going to spend 90 million dollars – on top of what they have already spent – running around at the behest of Inmarsat looking for a jet, would it be prudent, even cost effective for some of that money to be spent on chartering a 777 to fly some of these routes and get some real bloody data, and not have everyone twisting over some model that noone is allowed to verify? Unbelievable.

  33. Correction and important – Chris states the plane turned over andamans then made a subsequent turn south .

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