Deep Sea Plane Fishing

By Don Dudley

Published 04/17 2014 11:42PM

Updated 04/17 2014 11:43PM

This could be the key to solving the mystery of flight 370. It's a remotely operated vehicle, or rov for short Once wreckage of flight 370 is identified a rov like this one is likely the next crucial step in finding the plane's black box.It's Controlled From The Surface Using a joystick. It also Hhs lights to illuminate the stark black of the ocean deep. And high frequency sonar to combat the notoriously difficult visibility in the area of the Indian Ocean where the plane is believed to be.But most importantly, the rov has robotic arms called manipulators. They are essentially mechanical hands able to retrieve objects from the ocean floor, far deeper than any human could withstand. A second manipulator can be equipped with tools for cutting through metal, such as on the fuselage of a plane.

Experts say top priority for investigators is to retrieve both the flight data recorder and the cockpit voice recorder. This rov, called the triton xls, can go to depths of around 10,000 feet. But the rov that is brought to the wreckage of flight 370 could have to withstand the pressure of 15,000 feet of water. Underwater pulses were detected at that depth last week. And unlike the Bluefin searchers are currently using, the rov is connected to the boat through a line called an umbilical and has a constant power source and is able to feed back information immediately.

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