MH370 News Update — UPDATED

Pemba 3

A couple of interesting developments in the MH370 story.

  • A number of independent investigators have been working to determine whether the debris found on Tanzania is from a 777, and if so, which part it corresponds to. Mike Exner (who supplied the link to the image above), Don Thompson, Ge Rijn, Victor Iannello, and Barry Carlson all pitched in and have found that most likely the object is inner 1/3 section of a 777 right outboard flap. Mike and Don have written up a report which you can download here.
  • Victor Iannello has long been working on a post-FMT route by which MH370 could have continued to fly on autopilot without human interference and still wound up outside the current search area. Many have tried to find such routes in the past and found it impossible to make them match the ping rings without arbitrary changes in direction and/or changes in throttle setting. Victor has at last published his route. It achieves changes in direction by having the plane follow a magnetic heading, and achieves the change in speed by imagining that the plane is descending at the lowest possible automatic descent rate of 100 feet per minute. It’s quite a clever piece of work by an ever-creative researcher. Of course, the fact that it is possible does not mean that this is what the plane actually did, as Victor himself has pointed out.


Victor magnetic route

  • UPDATE 6/28/16 #2: Mike Exner has informed me “I checked those photos yesterday and confirmed the compressor is a Chinese model powered by 230VAC/50 Hz. Not from any aircraft.” UPDATE 6/28/16: Reader Greg Holwill writes: “I have attached photos of a fridge floating out at sea in Mozambique while fishing… I am situated in Durban in South Africa. The debris is located at my lodge in Mozambique.” Here are some of the photos he sent:




Doesn’t seem aeronautical to me, but would invite readers to share their thoughts. I could post more pictures if people are curious.

221 thoughts on “MH370 News Update — UPDATED”

  1. @Ge Rijn, You’re obviously a smart guy with lots of good ideas, but the part that you’re inevitably going to miss is that a lot of people have spent an enormous about out time discussing issues like Kate Tee’s purported sighting, and the consensus eventually formed that it was a dead end–the woman, if she did see anything at all, did not see MH370. We could go over and over the various lines of reasoning and the details of the case, but it would be incredibly tedious, and there are in fact productive lines of inquiry for us to collectively follow. So please do us the courtesy of just taking our word for it.

  2. @DrBobbyUlich:

    Thank you for the link you provided yesterday at 6:59 PM. Your paper gives a very clear explanation of how you arrived at the MRC/LRC speed ratio. I was just curious.

  3. @DennisW

    By the way, Kate Tee’s report can be matched with the ISAT data quite well with some creative thinking IMO.

  4. Here’s a new MH370 aggregate drift study (including Tanzania):…6753460224

    Current search box strongly counter-indicated.

    This work builds upon the synthesis of 745 separate data blocks pulled from the Adrift website. Results for customized debris subsets are available on request.

  5. @jeffwise

    “and the consensus eventually formed that it was a dead end–the woman, if she did see anything at all, did not see MH370. ”

    it was dismissed because the path didn’t match the holy ATSB ghost flight theory IIRC

  6. @Paul Smithson asked, “I am not sure when this theorised NW point came into play, but do you think it may be implicated in the announcement on 25 March to shift 1000km north? The reasons cited for this move seem to be ambiguous: a) new radar data analysis / flew faster in early portion of flight; b) revised interpretation of ISAT data.”

    I don’t know when the NW Point was considered as part of the evidence (or non-evidence), and how it was used to revise the search zone, but in the Preliminary Report dated April 9, 2014, and released on May 1, 2014, there were maps added as an annex showing possible paths. In one of the maps showing the paths around Sumatra, there was an unlabeled pin that we now know as the NW Point. So, it appears this point was known to Malaysia on April 9, 2014, or sooner.

  7. @Ken

    Thanks. I got whiney before I saw your post.


    Nice piece of work. I am digesting it. There was a serious storm, Cyclone Gillian, that passed through the area South of Sumatra about the same time that MH370 went missing.

  8. @StevanG

    I thought the IG and others treated Kate very fairly and respectfully. I think at the end of the day the altitude of the plane required for Kate’s sighting to be MH370 could not easily be reconciled with the duration of the flight after her sighting. My own paths put MH370 much further West (some 50-70 nautical miles) of Kate, and at a much higher altitude.

  9. @Lauren H,

    Thanks for providing OLPUS coordinates. None of the ECON great circle routes I have found are aligned with OLPUS. I will explore the lower-speed modes such as HOLDING and INOP and see if there is any possibility of a good fit and alignment with OLPUS.

    As an aside, none of the possible routes I have found so far pass close to Kate Tee’s location. As others have pointed out, the difficulty with matching her description is the extremely low altitude required.

  10. Apparently the debris found in Tanzania has been handed over to Malaysia. In a report published in The Australian, 1 Jul, “MH370 search should go on, says outgoing ATSB chief Martin Dolan” there is a comment about the debris:
    “In the two years since the plane disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers on board, five pieces of debris believed to come from the aircraft have been found. Last week another piece that appears to be from a Boeing 777 washed ashore on an island near Tanzania.

    It is not clear the piece came from MH370, and Malaysian authorities are sending it to the ATSB for closer inspection.

    “We haven’t had access to it yet, but we are coming to an agreement with our Malaysian colleagues that it will be brought to Australia for closer examination,” MR Dolan said.

    “We can’t comment at this stage on authenticity but the Malaysians are interested in it enough to bring it here for closer examination.” ”
    [or search for MH370 Dolan using Google etc]

    Still no indication why the debris and other items found on Madagascar are being ignored 🙁

  11. @AM2, that’s a bit like “the cheque is in the post”, isn’t it?

    @Victor, thanks for taking the trouble to look up those details.

  12. @Paul Smithson
    “cheque is in the post” 🙂 Its hard to guess what might be going on behind the scenes – do you have local knowledge about the analysis of this debris item? I’m disappointed that it is not being analysed independently and I’m inclined to agree with Jeff’s earlier comment “the black hole that is the Malaysian investigation”.

  13. @AM2. As reported by Xinhua (and local ITV) officials from the Tanzania air transport authority visited Pemba to examine it. The DG of the authority was quoted as saying that they had confirmed it was a 777 piece but would not comment on confirmation re 9M-MRO. The last I heard (several days ago), the piece was being transported to Dar es Salaam.

  14. @Jeff Wise

    Yes I take your (and others) word for it. It wasn’t my intention to go through the whole Kate Tee subject again. I understand that whatever she saw could not be proven to have been MH370 and therefore regarded useless.

    But still no one knows exactly what route MH370 took between 18:25 and 19:41. So to dismiss the possibilty all together MH370 could have been on the locations Kate Tee saw something like a plane would be premature IMO.

    Initialy my intention was to bring the Kate Tee sighting in relation with the possibility of a one engine flight after (at least) 18:40.

    Unrelated to the Kate Tee sighting I am curious what a one engine flightpath after 18:40 would look like.
    It is this that I hope some one will undertake to calculate.

  15. @Jeff Wise @StefanG @DrBobbyUlich

    One thing I like to add. What @StefanG says is mainly true from what I know about it.
    The sighting was mainly dismissed for it could not be related to a ‘ghost flight’ after FMT. And still cann’t.
    As @DrBobbyUlich points out f.i. the extremely low altitude required could not be matched with possible routes.

    But since @Victorl allows (requires) human intervention after FMT in his latest proposal the consensus on a ghost flight is left (at least till BEDAX/19:41) as the only possibility and I think that’s an important step.

    So in this light it could still be worth to re-evaluate a sighting like Kate Tee’s and other routes after FMT with possible human intervention included IMO.

  16. @Jeff. I suggest that Brock’s new study deserves a post of its own. Let’s discuss…

  17. @Ge Rijn, This forum is a small leaky boat trying to stay afloat in a stormy sea of horseshit. Apparently you haven’t realized it yet–it’s fine, you’re new–but Kate Tee’s alleged sighting is a rogue wave of horseshit. So I have a limited amount of tolerance for it. No more, please.

    Also, just to clarify, the ghost ship scenario has been ruled out, not in.

  18. Sorry, it was I who replied to someone’s question about the recent SIA fire with a brief mention of Tee, and I wonder if this started it all up again. I will desist from mentioning the topic in future.

    On a different tack, Airbus is talking about replacing black boxes with live streaming, courtesy of Inmarsat:

    Hope this is of interest if not strictly on topic.

Comments are closed.