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US 'black box' detector joins MH370 ocean search

PERTH, Australia - A US Navy "black box" detector made its much-anticipated debut in the oceanic hunt for flight MH370 on Friday but Australia's search chief warned it was crunch time with the box's signal set to expire soon.

The Australian naval vessel Ocean Shield arrived with a "towed pinger locator" capable of homing in on signals from the black box, as 14 planes scoured the remote Indian Ocean search area for signs of a crash site.

The plane disappeared on March 8, and Australian authorities coordinating the search have rushed the pinger device into place before the black box’s battery-powered location signal expires.

"On best advice, the locator beacon will last about a month before it ceases its transmissions, so we’re now getting pretty close to the time when it might expire," said Angus Houston, head of a coordination centre directing the eight-nation search.

AFP


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