Nearly a week after Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 vanished without a trace from the skies over the South China Sea, U.S. investigators say based on an analysis of satellite signals transmitted from the Boeing 777, there is a possibility the aircraft may have landed at some point.
The Wall Street Journal reports on Thursday, U.S. officials told WSJ reporter, Andy Pasztor, the information is based on an analysis of signals sent by the Boeing 777 Jet's satellite-communication link designed to automatically transmit the status of the on board system to the ground. The satellite data ''pings" evidenced the plane flew for an additional 5 hours after contact was lost.
A number of theories have surfaced over the last seven days, including several aviation experts belief that the missing flight is terrorism related or intentional downing. Other experts suggest mechanical failures, such as the electrical system.
One expert, Mary Schiavo, a former Inspector General at the U.S. Department of Transportation said a crack in the fuselage is likely to blame for the missing plane.
Interpol Secretary General Ronald Noble said during a news conference on Tuesday that the international police agency had identified two Iranian men, Pouri Nour Mohammadi, 18, and Delavar Seyed Mohammad Reza, 29.
Based on the latest satellite data and evidence that the plane's communication systems shut down separately, Aviation Analyst for ABC World News and Good Morning America, John Nance told CNN that mechanical failure is no longer a factor.
Rep. Peter King, (R-NY) the Chairman of the U.S. Counterterrorism and Intelligence Subcommittee and former Chair of the U.S. House Homeland Security Committee told NBC on Sunday that terrorism could not be ruled out, due to the lack of evidence of a distress call, mayday, or signal of any kind.
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, carrying 239 passengers and crew members departed from Kuala Lumpur early on Saturday, before it dropped off civilian radar screens less than an hour into the scheduled flight to Beijing, China.
The mystery flight evidences gaping holes in international aviation security. In 2013, over one billion passengers boarded airplanes without their passports being checked against Interpol's database of 40 million stolen or lost travel documents from 167 countries.
The unprecedented search by land, aircraft and sea from 12 countries including the United States has expanded into the Indian Ocean, hundreds of thousands of miles west of the flight's intended path.
As details slowly emerge, aviation experts become more certain that Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 met with foul play.