A crew member aboard a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2
Orion aircraft takes part in the search for the missing
airliner in March. REUTERS/Jason Reed
Researchers at a Perth university say there's a slim
chance a low-frequency underwater sound that they've been
analysing could be the missing Malaysian Airlines flight
crashing into the Indian Ocean.
But Curtin University senior research fellow Alec Duncan also
says the sound picked up by hydrophones off Rottnest Island
at about 9.30am (WST) on March 8 could have come from a
natural event such as a small earth tremor.
The Boeing 777 went missing in the early hours of that day on
the way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on
The Curtin researchers say the timing of the sound, which
they believe originated from thousands of kilometres
northwest of the current search area, made it of interest in
the hunt for MH370.
The search co-ordinators, the Joint Agency Coordination
Centre, said Curtin's analysis of the signals was considered
by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB).
"However, Curtin University has concluded, and the ATSB
agrees, that the current results are not compatible with the
international search team's analysis of the most likely area
where MH370 entered the water," JACC said.
"The ATSB will continue to discuss the analysis of this
information with Curtin University for the purposes of
informing the search."
Separately, the ATSB is investigating a British yachtswoman's
claim she saw what she believed to be a burning aircraft in
the sky above the Indian Ocean on March 8.
Katherine Tee, 41, told sailing site Cruisers Forum - a firm
for which she also works - that she didn't report the
sighting to Australian authorities until this week because
"there were two other planes passing over it - moving the
other way" and she thought they would report it.
She said she also wasn't sure of what she saw.