Perth: Two-thirds of the focused underwater search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight has now been completed, with no sightings of wreckage or debris.
Australia’s joint co-ordination centre said yesterday that the underwater vehicle Bluefin-21 had completed eight missions looking for the missing plane, but that “no contacts of interest have been found to date”.
The underwater search is focused on the area where the second of a series of pings, believed to be from the plane’s black box, were detected weeks ago.
But the mission has been plagued by difficulties, with the Bluefin-21 forced to surface early from missions twice, once because of a technical issue. The submersible has been operating slightly deeper than 4,500m below sea level to scour the ocean floor using sonar.
Weather conditions may also be problematic, with conditions expected to deteriorate as tropical cyclone Jack continues south.