MH370 mystery deepens as ‘serious flaw’ found in official analyses

'MH370: The Final Search' to unveil new claims

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The official analysis of the MH370 plane crash includes a “serious” mathematical error, which could potentially have huge implications in unravelling the mystery, has been told. Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, also known as MH370, was an international passenger flight that disappeared on March 8, 2014, while flying from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to Beijing, China. The crash has remained one of the biggest mysteries in airline disasters, fuelling a number of theories. Now, a new study claims official reports investigating the crash may have made a mathematical error which noted that the plane descended in a high-speed dive. 

Speaking to, Dr Vincent Lyne, from the University of Tasmania, said: “I’ve documented a serious mathematical flaw with the official analyses that MH370 was in a high-speed dive.

“The corrected explanation is that the plane was descending at less than 14 degrees of declination (not 90 degrees). High-school trigonometry is all that is required to explain the serious flaw which goes right through all the official analysis.”

The MH370 crew last communicated with air traffic control (ATC) around 38 minutes after the flight took off and was travelling over the South China Sea.

Minutes later, the aircraft disappeared from ATC radar, but was tracked by military radar for another hour, deviating westward from its planned flight path, until it left radar range 200 nautical miles northwest of Penang Island in northwestern Peninsular Malaysia.

Vincent Lyne

Dr Lyne, who works at the  Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, noted that British satellite company Inmarsat and official investigators had analysed satellite communications from MH370, and identified Doppler-shift-related Burst Frequency Offsets (BFO), after every hour of inactivity.

Through this data, Inmarsat estimated derived mathematical equations for the horizontal and vertical velocity of the flight, which the researcher claims had an anomaly.

He continued: “It’s a simple mistake with huge implications. It’s the hidden mistake that explains why MH370 has not been found where they searched.”

In his study, which is currently in preprint, he wrote: “Inmarsat’s BFO formulations led investigators to plausible simulated flight paths, constrained by their theory of fuel-starvation resulting in a wide set of mathematically-optimized flight path ranges, all optimally simulated to run out of fuel near the 7th satellite communication arc.

“Defense Science and Technology Group (DSTG) investigators used Inmarsat’s equation (‘Up-Down Model’) to interpret warm-up affected BFOs from the final two satellite communications as due to the aircraft going into an uncontrolled high-speed vertical accelerated dive, at 0.68 times gravitational acceleration.

“These analyses, in combination with drifter simulations, defined the second extensive and expensive unsuccessful underwater search bounds for MH370.”

The disappearance of MH370 prompted a large, multinational search in Asia and the southern Indian Ocean that became the most expensive search in aviation history.

Analysis of satellite communications by multiple agencies eventually concluded that the flight crashed somewhere in the southern Indian Ocean, although Dr Lyne suggests that these analyses need to now be reviewed. 

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In the study, he concluded: “despite dedicated, and otherwise brilliant, work by investigators their high-speed dive conclusion misrepresented the actual controlled descent of MH370

“Since much of the MH370 crash investigation, and fuel-starvation theory, relied heavily upon these DSTG conclusions, a robust international science review is recommended to urgently review all analyses and evidence before approving the next final search.”

This comes as earlier this month, airline investigator, Blaine Gibson, said that he believes the aircraft was deliberately downed into the sea. This conclusion has been reached only recently, when the damaged door from the landing gear was handed back to the probe.

The debris had in fact washed up on the Antsiraka Peninsula South Beach in Madagascar in 2017, and had been used as a ironing board by a couple for five years before its real purpose was identified.

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