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MH370: Malaysia Signs Deal With United States Firm to Locate Missing Plane

13 January 2018

The disappearance of the aircraft en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in March 2014 with 239 people aboard ranks among the world's greatest aviation mysteries, reported Reuters.

The government signed a "no cure, no fee" deal with the Houston, Texas-based company to resume the hunt for the plane, a year after the official search by Malaysia, Australia and China in the southern Indian Ocean was called off.

"But so far we don't know where our relatives are and where the plane is", Jiang Hui, 44, whose mother was on board Flight MH370 reportedly said.

Expressing similar sentiments, V. P. R. Nathan, whose wife Anne Daisy was on the aircraft which disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, said it was hard to come to terms without knowing what had happened to the families and their flight.

The MH370 debris could furnish clues to events on board before the aircraft crashed.

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Charitha Pattiaratchi, professor of coastal oceanography at the University of WA, told The West Australian the Ocean Infinity survey systems used from the Seabed Constructor vessel would cover 100,000sqkm in just 90 days.

A search by Malaysia, China, and Australia was called off previous year.

Ocean Infinity could earn up to $70 million, but only if it can locate MH370's wreckage or black boxes within three months.

Australia, China and Malaysia ended a fruitless $200 million search of an area of 120,000 sq km in the Indian Ocean in January 2017.

Ocean Infinity will use six torpedo-shaped HUGIN vessels launched from the mothership, which will communicate with them using an acoustic modem as they search in parallel for the debris field. Terms of the payment will be divided into four coverage areas, with rewards beginning at $20 million and reaching as much as $70 million, increasing as the search continues.

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New analysis suggested the search area in which Ocean Infinity will focus.

A next-of-kin, Shin Kok Chau who was present today thanked the Malaysian government for not losing hope of finding the missing jet. The ship is equipped with eight autonomous drones that have sonars and cameras installed.

Three confirmed fragments of MH370 have been found on the western shores of the Indian Ocean, The Star said. Search for the aircraft, which disappeared March 8, 2014, is set to resume soon.

"The ability to operate untethered independent missions allows the AUVs to go deeper and collect higher quality data, making this technology ideal for the search", the Ocean Infinity press release states.

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MH370: Malaysia Signs Deal With United States Firm to Locate Missing Plane