The Australian government announced that the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet shifted hundreds of miles north Friday morning
In a statement released midday Friday, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said that the Boeing 777 is likely not to have traveled as far south into the Indian Ocean as had previously been estimated.
The agency said that the new information was gleaned from an ongoing analysis of radar data between the South China Sea and the Strait of Malacca before radar contact with the plane was lost. It called this the “most credible lead yet.”
The new search area is 684 miles (1,100 kilometers) to the north east of the previous one. It was calculated after the analysis of the radar data indicated that the aircraft was travelling at a faster rate of speed than previously estimated and that it therefore would have burnt fuel more quickly.
“The new search area is approximately 319,000 square kilometres and around 1850 kilometres west of Perth.” It is four times larger than the search area that was the focus on Thursday’s search.
Meanwhile, U.S. officials said that the FBI had completed its review of the captain’s flight simulator and other computer data taken from his home and found nothing of interest.