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MH370 pinger locator: 3 pings detected from 2 search ships called 'encouraging'

Missing Malaysian plane, pinger locator best technology for this search.
Missing Malaysian plane, pinger locator best technology for this search.
Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images

MH370 pinger locator deployed to the Indian Ocean is the top technology that exists today to locate that ping that was picked up three times over the weekend. The ping, which was heard at two different times from two different locations by one ship from China, has sparked hope today that the searchers are in the right area, according to the BBC News on April 6.

As of Sunday morning another ship, one from Australia, also picked up a ping in the search area, which is considered encouraging today. This makes three pings detected in all.

The manufacturer of the locator said that if the Malaysian flight’s pinger is activated, their device will find it. The second pulse was picked up by the same Chinese ship that reported hearing the first ping. It was just hours later when they heard it again and the ship's location was less than two miles away from where they detected the first ping when picking up this pulse for a second time. The second pulse was heard for 90 seconds.

This is an “important and encouraging lead,” said Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston. He also warned that this new data has not been verified, it is just being reported at this time.

The British naval ship Echo is on its way to the area that the two separate pings were picked up by the Chinese ship. The Echo is expected to arrive in that area of the Indian Ocean in the pre-dawn hours of Monday.

Air Chief Marshal Houston confirmed that he had learned from the Chinese ship on Saturday that they had detected the first pulse. The pulse had the "characteristics consistent with" an aircraft's flight recorder. Then Houston reported that for a second time a pulse was detected. He said this at a news briefing at Pearce Air Base near Perth. Houston said:

"[Saturday] afternoon Perth time, there was another acoustic detection less than 2 km (1.2 miles) from the original."

The second signal that was detected lasted about 90 seconds, he said. The race is on to find the location of this ping because time is running out on the battery that allows that pulse to be transmitted. The battery is not expected to last much longer than a month and that month is nearly up since the ill-fated flight 370 disappeared taking 239 souls with it.

Update: News of the third ping detected is fairly new, so not much is reported about the area or duration of this pulse picked up by an Australian ship as of yet. What is important is that now two ships, with two different pieces of technology are detecting a pulse in a frequency that is conducive to the frequency given off by the beacons that planes are equipped with. This was reported by Fox News live on Sunday mid-morning.