MH370 Search Update

By George Backwell
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
ACM Retd. Angus Houston: Photo JACC

Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) informs that the vessel 'ADV Ocean Shield' has arrived at Geraldton, Western Australia,  to begin preparations to receive spare parts related to the transponder mounted on the 'Ocean Shield' and the transponder mounted on the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle, 'Bluefin-21'.

JACC explains that the repairs are necessary to correct a hardware issue affecting the ability of the transponders to communicate with each other during a dive. The problem became apparent during Bluefin-21's last mission on Tuesday. Ocean Shield  was originally going to Dampier to await the transponder parts, however, it was determined that the parts could be delivered to the ship more quickly via the port of Geraldton.

Once the replacement parts are installed, testing will be conducted at Geraldton prior to Ocean Shield transiting back to the search area.

Malaysian, Australian and Chinese authorities met over the weekend in Fremantle to discuss the bathymetric survey.

It was agreed that the Chinese survey ship Zhu Kezhen will conduct the bathymetric survey of the areas provided by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, and is scheduled to sail for the survey area on Wednesday, weather permitting.

Photo: Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston AC, AFC (Ret'd) is leading the JACC to coordinate various aspects of the search on the ground.

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