A claim by GeoResonance Pty Ltd. that it found possible plane wreckage in the Bay of Bengal, 118 miles south of Bangladesh and far from the search area for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, is being investigated by authorities.
Australia-based GeoResonance stressed that it is not certain it found the Malaysia Airlines plane missing since March 8, but it called for its findings to be investigated, The Associated Press reported.
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The company uses imaging, radiation chemistry and other technologies to search for oil, gas or mineral deposits. In hunting for Flight 370, it used the same technology to look on the ocean floor for chemical elements that would be present in a Boeing 777: aluminum, titanium, jet fuel residue and others.
GeoResonance compared multispectral images taken March 5 and 10 — before and after the plane's disappearance — and found a specific area where the data varied between those dates, it said in a statement. The location is about 190 kilometers (118 miles) south of Bangladesh.
Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said China and Australia were aware of the announcement. "Malaysia is working with its international partners to assess the credibility of this information," a statement from his office said.
GeoResonance said it began trying to find the plane before the official search area moved to the southern Indian Ocean. "The only motivation is to help the families of the missing passengers and crew, knowing the company has the technology capable of the task," it said.
Flight 370 was carrying 239 passengers and crew from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it disappeared the morning of March 8. Radar tracking and communications from the cockpit showed the plane reached cruising altitude without incident, but it veered off course for unknown reasons and flew west across the Malay Peninsula.
India, Bangladesh and other countries to the north have said they never detected the plane in their airspace. The jet had contact with a satellite from British company Inmarsat for a few more hours, and investigators have concluded from that data that the flight ended in the southern Indian Ocean.
An underwater signal consistent with an aircraft's black boxes was detected in that search area off western Australia on April 8, but no conclusive evidence has been found.
GeoResonance said it gave its preliminary findings to investigators on March 31 and was surprised by a lack of response. That claim could not be confirmed.
The disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 on a trip from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people aboard has sparked one of aviation's biggest mysteries
. The search has shifted from waters off of Vietnam, to the Strait of Malacca and then to waters in the southern Indian Ocean as data from radar and satellites was further analyzed.
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