Over 6,900 square kilometres of the seafloor have been covered so far in the search for the lost Malaysia Airlines plane along with 239 people on board.
In addition to locating the aircraft, the underwater search aims to map the MH370 debris field in order to identify and prioritise the recovery of specific aircraft components, including flight recorders, which will assist with the Malaysian investigation.
The ATSB has utilised the data from the bathymetric survey work to prepare the initial plan for the underwater search, to be followed and referred to by all parties involved. The plan includes search timings, methods, procedures, safety precautions and the initial search areas for the various vessels.
The latest news on the search vessel movement tells us that Fugro Discovery departed the underwater search area on November 18 to transit to Fremantle for resupply. The vessel is expected to arrive on November 23 and depart again for the search area on November 24.
Fugro Equator’s mobilisation for the underwater search has been postponed due to delays in the supply of equipment.
While the equipment is being freighted to Australia from the USA, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has taken the opportunity to conduct further bathymetric survey work. Fugro Equator departed Fremantle on 16 November for the search area. The vessel is expected to arrive in the search area on 20 November and will undertake bathymetric survey work to broaden the survey coverage in the current underwater search area.