Australian investigators have released reports highlighting satellite photographs that may show debris from a missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 that crashed more than three years ago.
Imagery from a French military satellite appears to show dozens of pieces of debris floating on the surface of the Indian Ocean — close to, but not in, the designated search zone.
Malaysia Airlines MH370 disappeared as it traveled from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, with 239 people aboard.
Four satellite photos included in the Australian Transport Safety Bureau reports were taken two weeks after the plane disappeared, prior to the ATSB’s involvement in the search.
“Clearly we must be cautious. These objects have not been definitely identified as MH370 debris,” ATSB Chief Commissioner Greg Hood said Wednesday.
“Geoscience Australia identified a number of objects in the satellite imagery which have been classified as probably man-made. The image resolution is not high enough to be certain whether the objects originated from MH370 or are other objects that might be found floating in oceans around the world.”
The ATSB said it received the satellite photos in March and scrutinized them as part of a re-examination of MH370’s disappearance.
The search of a 9,600 square-mile area of the Indian Ocean was suspended in January. Debris that washed up on the east coast of Africa has been confirmed by authorities as likely parts from the missing plane. All 239 people on board are presumed dead, but it remains unclear what caused the aircraft to crash.
A U.S. underwater exploration company has offered to search areas of the ocean not yet investigated.
By Ed Adamczyk