US Navy Sends 2nd Search Plane To Find Malaysia Airlines MH370 (Video)
As the search intensifies in the southern Indian Ocean for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, the U.S. Navy is sending a second P-8 Poseidon Patrol aircraft to Australia to help pinpoint the location of what is believed to be the debris field of the missing airplane.
The 7th Fleet reports the P-8 Poseidon will fly from Okinawa in Japan to Perth, Australia on March 28.
According to Cmdr. Tom Moneymaker, U.S. 7th Fleet oceanographer:
"It's critical to continue searching for debris so we can reverse-forecast the wind, current and sea state since March 8th to recreate the position where MH370 possibly went into the water. We've got to get this initial position right prior to deploying the Towed Pinger Locator since the MH370's black box has a limited battery life and we can't afford to lose time searching in the wrong area."
As Home Post reported earlier this week, the U.S. Pacific Fleet moved a Towed Pinger Locator hydrophone to the search area so it is ready when needed. Navy Cmdr. Chris Budde explained:
“The Towed Pinger Locator has some highly sensitive listening capability so that if the wreck site is located, we can hear the black box pinger down to a depth of about 20,000 feet. Basically, this super-sensitive hydrophone gets towed behind a commercial vessel very slowly and listens for black box pings."
The P-8 Poseidon typically flies at 5,000 feet during surveillance missions, although it has the capability to fly as low as 1,000 feet for an extended period of time. The Navy calls the P-8A "the most advanced long range anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare aircraft in the world."
Here's the latest on the search for MH370 fromCBS News: