Malaysia Aircraft Search Turns Up 1800s Shipwreck

An autonomous underwater vehicle spotted the early 1800s-era ship, likely made of steel or iron, in the Indian Ocean.

The search for the mission Malaysia Airlines plane that disappeared over the Indian Ocean in 2014 has discovered something else: a 19th-century shipwreck.

Searchers discovered the shipwreck while combing the Indian Ocean for remnants of Flight MH 370, which vanished without a trace on March 8, 2014. Underwater sonar images revealed an "anomalous," likely man-made shape beneath the waves, according to a statement by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.

On Jan. 2, the search team sent an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), dubbed the Havila Harmony, to follow up on the anomalous find. The AUV captured high-resolution sonar images of the object, confirming that it was a wreck. Experts at the Shipwreck Galleries of the Western Australian Museum reviewed the images and confirmed that the object was an early 1800s-era ship, likely made of steel or iron. In May 2015, the MH370 search team discovered a separate shipwreck, dating to the mid- to late-1800s, in the Indian Ocean. [In Photos: Lost in the Bermuda Triangle]

Photos: 22 Shipwrecks Found in Greek Expedition

Flight MH370 vanished while traveling from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to Beijing, China. Prior to the plane's disappearance, all communication from the cockpit had been normal. Military radar tracked the plane deviating from its set course until it disappeared from view over the Andaman Sea. However, based on the in-flight satellite system, investigators determined that the plane continued to fly for several more hours, leaving them to conclude it crashed somewhere over the southern Indian Ocean.

Since then, Australia, on the behest of the Malaysian government, has headed the search and recovery operations. In July 2015, a "flaperon," a flap found on the wings of an aircraft that increases drag and helps the plane turn right and left, washed ashore on the island of Reunion. Investigators later confirmed that the flap came from Flight MH370, Live Science reported.

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So far, the search team has combed 30,888 square miles (80,000 square kilometers) of the Indian Ocean. However, the search operation has not yet yielded any other plane parts, such as the black box, which could reveal what caused the plane to veer off course. By midyear, the team will complete its search of 46,000 square miles (120,000 square km) of the ocean, according to the statement.

Original article on Live Science.

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The search for the missing flight MH370 plane in the Indian ocean has turned up this 19th century shipwreck.

A joint Greek-American archaeological expedition has discovered 22 shipwrecks around the small Greek archipelago of Fourni, revealing what may be the ancient shipwreck capital of the world.

Read the article about the discovery


Hailed as one of the top archaeological finds of 2015, the discovery added 12 percent to the total of known ancient shipwrecks in Greek territorial waters in just 10 diving days.

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Shipwrecks were found literally everywhere. Over half of the wrecks date to the Late Roman Period (circa 300-600 A.D.). Overall, the shipwrecks span from the Archaic Period (700-480 B.C.) to the Classical (480-323 B.C.) and Hellenistic (323-31 B.C.) through the Late Medieval Period (16th century).

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The cargoes revealed long distance trades between the Black Sea, Aegean Sea, Cyprus, the Levant, and Egypt in all those periods. At least three ships carried amphoras, or jars, that have not been found previously on shipwrecks.

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The archaeologists mapped each shipwreck using photogrammetry to create 3D site plans. Representative artifacts were raised from each wreck site for scientific analysis.

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Amphoras may go on displays in museums once conservation work is over.

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The archaeologists have only examined about 5 percent of the archipelago's coastline, and are confident that many more wrecks will be discovered as they return to the islands next year.

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