Friday, March 14, 2014

Final Chapter to Mystery of MH370?

When I wrote Where is MH370, or where MH370 is? in which I had daringly or far too boldly postulated, from the few evidence gleaned from various reports by news media, that MH370 flew towards the west past Pulau Perak (Kedah), I had hoped rather wishfully I might be totally off track (excuse the pun), and that the aircraft might have landed somewhere on the Asian continent (Vietnam, China, or even Cambodia or Laos) which was off radar coverage.

Pulau Perak

Alas, it would seem now that my guesswork might well bear fruit.

The US Pentagon has just announced it has strong reasons to believe that MH370 is down in the Indian Ocean after having flown in that westward direction for 4 to 5 hours from being last spotted by Malaysian defence radar.

Having search that area using its P-3C Orion maritime surveillance aircraft, it has already despatched its destroyer, USS Kidd, to the target spot. It'll take 24 hours for USS Kidd to sail from the South China Sea through the Straits of Malacca into the Indian Ocean to reach there.

USN P-3C Orion

Meanwhile our dear Hishamuddin Hussein (Defence Minister and acting MCA Transport Minister), after having denied a report by the Wall Street Journal that Rolls Royce had received ACARS* transmission from MH370 during the 5-hour period after its last known position in the South China Sea, indicating that the aircraft had been still flying, has now claimed he had only rejected the claim that Rolls Royce had received the ACARS transmission but had not disputed the possibility of the aircraft still flying.

* Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System is a digital datalink system for transmission of short, relatively simple messages between aircraft and ground stations via radio or satellite (independent of pilots action)

He said: “We are working very closely with the FAA* and the NTSB** on the issue of a possible air turn back.”

* U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, the equivalent of our DCA

** National Transportation Safety Board, an accident investigation board independent of the FAA and other Transport Regulatory Authorities, so that it can if necessary report on possible FAA or another regulatory authority's faults in an accident (air, road, rail or sea)

Continuing he stated: “They have indicated to us that based on the information given by the Malaysian authorities, they were of the view that there was reasonable ground for the Malaysian authorities to deploy resources to conduct search on the western side of the peninsula of Malaysia. Under the circumstances, it is appropriate to conduct the search even if the evidence suggests there is a possibility of finding a minor evidence to suggest that ... the aircraft would have been there.”

Bloomberg reported that the Indian Foreign Ministry has announced India is sending its ship(s) there to help in the search, and said they were provided with 'very specific coordinates' in the Andaman Sea.

USS Kidd

In the next several hours I reckon it'll be a race between the US Navy and its Indian counterpart (or Coast Guard) to see who will have the unpleasant duty of announcing to the world the final chapter of the mystery surrounding the tragic flight of MH370, and hopefully bring closure for the grieving families of 239 people.


  1. Damn the Americans....but Thank You.
    I suspect they have found MH370's emergency locator beacon, using their surveillance satelites, hence the very specific Latitude and Longitude. The concept is a bit like a camera zoom lens. They have to be pointed in the correct general direction to find the signal - but everyone was earlier looking in the wrong place.

    Yesterday, perhaps 3 or 4 days late, the Malaysian government started sharing with the search team - Malaysian and also foreign partners maps showing MH370's suspected path after the turnaround off the coast of Kelantan.
    The map shows the aircraft flew a shallow V-track, first SSW towards Penang, then near Penang it turned WNW. That's why I earlier posted that the plane made at least one turn after the first turnaround. It is possible to be done via autopilot setting, so my earlier conclusion that the plane was definitely still being actively piloted until near Penang may not be true.
    Butterworth airbase radar lost the plane over the horizon somewhere beyond Pulau Perak, but the plane continued to fly on. So the Andaman Islands direction is logical.

    Why this this strange track, we won't know until they recover the aircraft's two Black Boxes.
    ACARS links back to through satellite using the 777's satelite antenna. The aircraft was still flying in one piece for hours after that. So the transponder was either deliberately or accidentally switched off - it is very unlikely both transponder and and built-in back-up failed.

    The Malaysian government must learn how to tell things as they are, and not try to "manage the truth" - that will not help find MH370. Malaysians are used to this kind of nonsense almost every day, but the world press is excoriating the way the crisis is being handled.
    To be fair, the search operation itself is being carried out in a competent and methodical manner, and the Americans, who are well trained at this kind of process, have had no complaints.

    The complaint is on how this whole episode is being handled or not bein handled by the people at the top.
    Sorry, I don't mean to start an argument here, but as fellow Penangite blogger Susan Loone said "Integrity above Unity".

    1. US military/intelligence found location based on Malaysian civil and radar recordings, but you're right, the Malaysians were either not sure the radar blip was MH370 or they were not keen to show the radar capability to countries like Thailand, Viet, Indon, Sing and CHina

    2. BTW, you keep saying the aircraft in its westward track made a further turn (after thw initial turn back at its last reproting point to ATC) - BUT you still haven't provided any source for your allegations. Until you do, we have to dismiss that claim

    3. Oh come on la! Singapore would have known about Malaysia radar capability. That's pure bullshit that Malaysia not willing to show radar capabilitty

    4. and how would you know? Weren't you also the one who rejected the notion of pilots becoming unconscious as a result of slow depressurization? wakakaka

    5. Perhaps, my yingeland is no good.......I say though it's probable that slow depressurisation is the cause........Since when did I reject the notion outright? Huh? Now, kaytee become lawyer hah

    6. my apologies, you're correct. A correction to my query where what I meant to say was: Didn't you reject the notion that the pilots after suffering from the effects of gradual depressurization (hypoxia) didn't or won't have sufficient time to transmit information to ATC?

  2. Kaytee,with all the advance systems and technology,definitely it will be the US navy which is going to have the privilege of announcing to the world that it has located the wreakage of Ft MH 370.It is a no brainer,matey.

    1. the further west MH 370 is, the faster will be the arrival of the Indian Coast Guard or Navy search - the Indians have been provided the target coordinates by Malaysians


    The Pentagon is sending a P-8 Poseidon to join the hunt for MH370.
    A modified military 737 with extended range, it is crammed full of electronic hardware and massive computer processing power.
    The US Navy's premier surveillance aircraft and submarine hunter.

    The on-board hardware uses so much electricity, Boeing had to replace the standard 737 on-board generator with a 3x more powerful one.

    If it is still humanly possible to find MH370, the P-8 Poseidon will likely find it.

    1. the spot has already been identified but any further confirmation will be helpful

  4. This could indeed be the beginning of the final chapter of MH370.

    It also proved the might of the US surveillance + analytical capability.

    SATCOM utilizes satellites for communication. It sends signal to the satellites (wherever in the sky). The signal is captured by the nearest satellite & link is established. This infos is also kept in the DB.

    Remember Boeing has an add-on plane real-time health monitoring system that MAS didnt subscribed? It's very likely that Boeing is using the same SATCOM link for this monitoring purpose. Since MAS didnt paid, so the link is established but never opened. However, the initiation 'ping' by the monitoring system is kept in the DB.

    By carefully analyzing the signature of this 'ping' records over time, kept in the DB, a pattern could be established. Thus, how long the plane is still in the air until the 'ping' is totally lost.

    Combining the ATB scenario, the continuous failure in SAR at the Gulf of Thailand & Vietnam/China wouldnt allowed a non-squawking 'dark' plane to fly in their air-space without flighter jet escorting. the sudden West-ward detour of MH370 becomes highly likely.

    However, this signal wouldnt give direction/coordinates/voice recording as its primary function is mechanical health of the plane during flight. & since no channel is opened, thus only the initiated timestamp is kept in the DB.

    Now if the SATCOM is still working, why was the plane NOT in communication contact with ATC?

    This is the reason that there is a possibility that someone manually turned off the transponder to disallow for its squawking. This points to a likelihood of hijacking/sabotage!

    In the next few hour, The Indian navy should be able to confirm. But the chance for any survivors is VERY slim as the golden hours of SAR have long passed. Anything alive would be a miracle.

    1. Just by looking at the timestamp, it is enough to determine: 1. the direction of the flight, 2. the approximate speed of the flight, 3. whether it is flying in a straight line (control by man or auto-pilot). Then one can predict a very narrow locatiion of the plane (crash).

  5. Weird....
    a. MAS and the Malaysian government (Hisaputing, no less) says no ACARs transmission was received after 1.30 am.
    b. WSJ quotes White House sources (!) that satellite tracking of engine data transmission showed MH370's engines , at least, were still operating hours after 1.30 am.

    The US has deep interests in the loss of the flight, not just because 3 Americans were on-board. The aircraft was built by Boeing, America's largest exporter, and the 777 is their most profitable aircraft. They have to find out what went wrong.
    The Pentagon is supposed to be watching this region like a hawk, because of the tensions with China. They have multi-billions of dollars of the best surveillance hardware on the planet covering this area, how did a big plane just go missing ?

  6. Ktemoc,

    The map of the "suspected path" of MH370 going West has been shared with the search team , including foreign military helping with the search.

    It has not been authorised to be released to the public by the Malaysian government, this was an "unauthorised shot" taken in the Search operations room of one of the foreign teams.

    The location the Americans are rushing to get to is well beyond the range of Malaysian radar, but yes, analysis of the radar data pointed in the correct direction.
    The rest of the work was done via surveillance satelites.

    1. I'm afraid unless we know the source we can't rely on its claim. Last night a comment suggested I see a YouTube clip of MH370 appearing south of Hainan (China), which apparently went viral with hundreds of thousands of hits, wakakaka



    Bomoh video goes viral on the Internet....

    My Chinese "Buddhist" friend , who sometimes consults Bomohs said - the most advanced technology available, being deployed by the world's largest military still hasn't been able to locate the plane, why not try the Bomoh as well......

    It also helps comfort the "Heartland" - which still very much believes in Bomohs, that everything possible is being done.

  8. Once you've ruled out the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be true.” - Sherlock Holmes

  9. My prediction is.....the American navy, the Indian navy....all will rush to the scene ....and find nothing there. MH370 is in The Twilight Zone...

  10. if the plane still in flight for 4 to 5 hours, what happen to the passengers?
    I mean they still can text, phone or fight back if they were hijackers on board.

    1. If Ktemoc's slow depressurisation theory is correct, the passengers would have been dead by then, or unconcious, even though the aircraft would still be flying, engines running, lights still on....until it runs out of fuel.
      My other doubt is if it crashed in the Andaman Sea, it had NOT yet run out of fuel.

      Remember, MH370 originally carried enough fuel to reach Beijing + at least another 45 minutes reserve required by ICAO regulations.

      So what happened ? The hijack-attempt-gone-awry theory cannot be ruled out at this time.

    2. Possibility 1 - 4 hours would have been the remaining time to Beijing and they might not even be aware the aircraft had gone west, though the crew would, thus the likelihood is possibility no 2

      Possibility No 2 = everyone on board (crew and passnegers) were unconscious. The pilot who was already hypoxic though not unconscious at the time of turn back, without FULL mental capacity (due to deprivation fo oxygen) to know what he was doing had attempted to turn back to KL but didn't make the correct turn (he was probably muddled and fumbling weakly through lack fo oxygen, and accidentally switched off the transponder when he meant to switch it to Emergency.

      Why didn't he grab the oxygen mask or make a radio call? Those would be correct & logical responses but when a pilot suffered from lack of oxygen he couldn't think clearly (proven by aviation medical experiments/tests) and had probably acted on basic instinct to turn and even descend - he was probably fumbling around in an incoherent way while he grew nearer to unconsciousness.

    3. latest ::According to the report, two US officials said that they believe the data reporting system was shut down at 1.07am, while the transponder was shut down at 1.21am on Saturday, when the flight carrying 239 people vanished from radar screens. TMI

    4. Anonymous of 1:43 pm, March 14, agreed that we still cannot rule out hijackers though it seems unlikely as events have "supposedly" untold. Hijackers normally would have made a statement, eg. announcing/broadcasting a political statement or creating a scene like crashing into, say, the Petronas Twin Towers or somewhere in the country they wanted to make a political statement.

      On the 2nd issue, as to how far MH370 would have gone to, that depends.

      Firstly, there's the fuel aspect - assuming the plane was running on auto-cruise with locked altitude, it would have gone past Sri Lanka into the Indian Ocean between India and Africa (not necessarily over Sri Lanka or India as it would then have been detected by ATC or military radar)

      Secondly, there's the altitude aspect. If in his attempted descent the near unconscious pilot didn't lock the altitude at say, some height like 30,000 etc, it's possible the aircraft would then keep descending, perhaps very gradually, until it lost all height to hit the sea at around the Andaman Islands or even further or for that matter, nearer.

      As I commented earlier, they were probably unconscious initially but eventually ended up never waking up, ever, way way before the aircraft hit the sea.

      That's my speculation,

    5. Anonymous of 1:59 pm, March 14 - That's possible though the source was anonymous (unnamed US officials) so I would be wary of it.

      Nonetheless, let me speculate again:

      (i) ACARS was shut down at 1.07am due to a part of the aircraft fuselage being torn off (as discussed in a blog on a relevant FAA Airworthiness Directive posted by a Stanford Uni undergraduate). That's also when the suspected slow depressurization started due to the crack in the fuselage.

      (ii) by 1:20 or so, the pilots and passengers, being exposed to increasing cabin altitude = breathing less and less oxygen) were in a semi state of unconsciousness or even unconsciousness, but the pilot made a last effort to attempt to turn back to KL and switch the transponder to Emergency but in his hypoxic state, made an error and inadvertently switched it off (at 1.21am)

    6. I don't know la......seems like kaytee put more credibility towards that stanford uni guy.....hehehehe

    7. it's not so much the blogger but the issue he brought up, namely the FAA Airworthiness Directive (AD). Hope you know what an AD is, wakakaka

    8. But you so called very cool minister say that no plumbum with the plane........guess what vocation I am in........

      When are you going to challenge that dog aka CLF in Aussie land?

  11. Be wary of such reports (extract below) which cite "several unnamed ...":

    ***Citing several unnamed US military and space industry officials who had been briefed on the investigation, the US daily reported that the satellites had also received speed and altitude information about the aircraft from the five or six “pings” before the pulses disappeared, which the experts believe could help them decipher its route and location.***

    ***Unnamed*** means cannot be relied upon but newspapers have to report news.

    Look at this one ***But the people involved in the matter had declined to divulge the specific flight path the plane had transmitted, WSJ reported.*** No difference to our Bomoh forecast that the aircraft could still be flying or had crashed, wakakaka

    And WSJ has corrected one of its report that Hishamuddin declared as incorrect, which means poor Hisham had been correct but we had rather believed WSJ than him, wakakaka,

    My source: Malay Mail'

    1. Just like your sifu RPK......Hahahaha, not realiable......HAHAHAHA! Malay male......WTF la.........I never trust that Rocky bru's newspaper......If it's straits times (singapore), I can fully trust........Malaysia hah.....only sin chew jit poh more reliable

    2. I believe there are two Malay Mails, with one being the Online version called Malay Mail Online. I think Rocky Bru belongs to the other one


    The 777's transponder switch. Position OFF is just next to normal XPNDR transponder operation. Pilots do get requested to switch off transponders on the ground in airports otherwise it gets very messy with so many planes next to each other.

    However, the switch has a significant spring load between clicks, it is designed to be very unlikely to be turned accidentally.

    The ACARS system is controlled via a digital keyboard, totally seperate from the transponder .

    If , as MAS says, the ACARS data feed was also cut off, there is very little likelihood it got switched off accidentally, together with the Transponder.

    What many (myself included) did not realise until the WSJ report today, is even if the crew turns off the ACARS data feed, the system keeps pinging out an "I'm here" signal every 1 hour, even though it no longer sends any data. A bit like a mobile phone on standy.

    It is getting increasingly possible this tragedy was no accident.

    1. That means that the so called honoxia theory by kaytee would more or less NOT probable

    2. Old Pilot, there is an American blog (belonging to a Stanford Uni undergraduate) which posted (in reagrds to MH370) about a Boeing Airworthiness Directive (AD) on the B777 about mandatory repairs to a part of the fuselage which due to some deficiency has a likelihood of being torn off in flight and which may affect the integrity of the pressurized hull leading to depressurization.

      Apparently the transponder and ACARS aerials are located on this section of the fuselage. The suspicion has been that this happened on the aircraft of MH370 and a depressurization leak occurred, slow enough not for the pilots to realize the fault until they were already hypoxic. The aerials for the transponder and perhaps even the ACARS could have been ripped off as well, though from what we've read, the ACARS was still working for about 5 more hours.

      Thus if this theory/suspicion has been true, then the issue of one of the pilots accidentally switching off the SSR becomes an irrelevant discussion.

    3. we can always rely on looes74 to entertain us with his gibberish, wakakaka

    4. HAHAHAHA! I guess certain people are like old dogs can't learn new tricks.....Oh come la!

  13. sorry Anon whoever you're - I won't publish terrorist scare

  14. Alamak! Now the search returns to Vietnam waters due to a non seismic reading on March 8.
    Whether in the Andamans or further afield in the Indian Ocean, or off Vietnamese waters, I hope they find something soon before more ministerial fools speak gobbledeegook.


    This is becoming more credible day by day.
    The flight was all the time under control for a long while.
    Whether it landed safely is another matter.

    1. If this is true and the aircraft landed somewhere safely with no one hurt, then it will be a wonderful happy ending, with me proven wrong but the happiest blogger in Malaysia

  16. China Southern Airlines just took delivery of their first very own Boeing 777, instead of codeshare with other airline....ahem...



    My goodness...MH370 changed course 4 times that night ?

    1. doesn't make sense to go from waypoints Vampi to Gival and then Igrex. Why not Vampi direct to Igrex?

      besides "All three sources declined to be identified because they were not authorised to speak to the media and due to the sensitivity of the investigation." Yeah right!

  18. The Malaysian Govt has been getting a lot of flak for flip flopping and not forthcoming enough with the dissemination of information. To their defense, I doubt the Malaysian authority has the liberty of being in the know with regards to the onslaught of incoming disclosure from ‘unnamed sources.’

    Boeing, the official party who is in the position to clarify once and for all has been oddly, silent. My uncorroborated assumption points to the reality Boeing has eloquently taken a back seat because they are in the same predicament boggling big names like Google, Apple, facebook, Yahoo etc – involvement of monitoring works for certain US agencies. Post 9/11, data collection has been at the forefront in the fight against terrorism. Boeing, like other US based companies are most likely made reluctant partners in the terrorism fight, and made to refrain from certain disclosure.

    Is MAS aware there are certain mechanism on the plane that ‘pings’ ? Probably not. Boeing is not keen to be busted for doing their work for the US govt either. I doubt this ‘extra’ ping capability goes well with Boeing’s other paranoid clients like China, Russia, etc. Not to mention Europe-based rival Airbus will only be too pleased to alleviate such privacy concerns.

    Hishamuddin’s insistence on our commitment to find the missing plane above all else, points to the likelihood there is now a certain understanding between US and Malaysia in return for US assistance. Prolly, don’t ask, don’t tell.