Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Missing Plane Could be Found Using Clouds, Scientist Says

October 21, 2014 Last Updated: October 21, 2014

The missing Malaysia Airlines plane, Flight 370, could be found using a new method, according to a scientist.

Hydrometeorologist Aron Gingis, head of environmental consultancy firm Australian Management Consolidated, says that it’s possible to locate the missing plane by identifying cloud changes for evidence of vapor trails caused by burning fuel emissions from the aircraft.

Gingis, a former Monash University academic who specializes in cloud microphysics, says that the technology has already been used to locate shipwrecks in the Pacific Ocean.

But Gingis, who has 27 years of experience, was rejected by Malaysian, Chinese, and Australian authorities after he offered his expertise to them to aid the search. 

“I believe that we have a realistic chance to follow flight path of Malaysian Airline MH370 and follow its flight direction and possibly identifying its landing or crash site,” Mr Gingis wrote to the Malaysian High Commissioner Eldeen Husaini in an email dated April 3, reported News AU

“I would be required to fly to KL and to have a detailed briefing with Malaysian search and rescue authorities in order to be able to identify and search for specific satellite availability and all satellite data imagery frames that we can analyse using our cloud microphysics algorithms. The traveling to KL and back to Melbourne and 1 day briefing session will be sufficient to explain to your search and rescue authorities as of our ability to identify the flying trails of MH370.

“I believe that we will be able to utilize our expertise and identify the flight pass of MH370 and then to direct the search and rescue authorities to save or recover MH370 passengers.”

The plane vanished on Saturday, March 8 while flying to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur.

 Trent Wyatt, a crew member of a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3 Orion, on lookout during the search to locate missing Malaysia Airways Flight MH370 at sea over the Indian Ocean on April 11, 2014 off the coast of Western Australia. (Richard Wainwright - Pool/Getty Images)
Trent Wyatt, a crew member of a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3 Orion, on lookout during the search to locate missing Malaysia Airways Flight MH370 at sea over the Indian Ocean on April 11, 2014 off the coast of Western Australia. (Richard Wainwright – Pool/Getty Images)

But Gingis eventually got a response that essentially said “thanks but no thanks.” He soon contacted the Australian Transport and Safety Bureau but didn’t want to answer the list of 11 questions that was sent back for fear of compromising commercial and security interests without being under contract.

The bureau confirmed the information. Gingis said he offered to do the work for $17,500.

Sarah Bajc, the partner of one of the 239 passengers on the plane, American Philip Wood, said that she can’t understand why Gingis’ offer was rejected. 

“What I do know is that credible scientists who end up being right are called quacks all the time. There were dozens who proposed the earth was round for hundreds of years before society accepted it,” she said.

“There are many functioning technologies that are squashed by ‘big business’ that is protecting its revenue streams — I would include many governments and powerful individuals in that category too.”

Sarah Bajc, an American, whose partner, Philip Wood, was on flight MH370, speaking during an interview with Agence France-Presse in Kuala Lumpur in July 2014. (AFP/Getty Images)
Sarah Bajc, an American, whose partner, Philip Wood, was on flight MH370, speaking during an interview with Agence France-Presse in Kuala Lumpur in July 2014. (AFP/Getty Images)

 

Meanwhile, Australian officials are trying to figure out why prime minister Tony Abbott made confident comments despite receiving no official briefing over the matter.

Abbott said in April that the search for the missing plane “has been very much narrowed down because we’ve now had a series of detections, some for quite a long period of time” and that he was “very confident” that it was the black box.

But later that day the joint agency coordination chief said that there hadn’t been any significant developments on the search.

Abbott representatives confirmed that Abbot’s information came without an official briefing, but said they were made based on the advice from “a range of experts.”

“I’m asking where it came from since his chief envoy clearly clarified later in the day to say there was no breakthrough,” Greens leader Christine Line said in a Senate hearing on Monday, reported the Guardian.

“Amsa [the Australian Maritime Safety Authority] said they didn’t provide the information to the prime minister, the bureau of transport and safety says it didn’t provide the advice to the prime minister, so I’m just trying to find out where the prime minister got this from.

“It was pretty reckless, surely, to go and make a statement like that if there’s no detailed analysis at all of the substance.”

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