by Benson Agoha
US investigators helping to solve the mystery surrounding the disappearance of a Passenger Plane, shortly after take off on Friday suspect, it might have flown on for hours, before disappearing.
Investigators say engine Data Suggest Flight MH370 Was Airborne Long After Radar Disappearance, and might have been flying four as much as four hours after its last known moment of contact at 1:30am on March 8.
According media reports by The Wall Street Journal they suspect that "Based on an air speed of 480 knots, this means the plane could have traveled an additional 2,200 nautical miles."
Aviation investigators and national security officials believe the plane flew for a total of five hours, based on data automatically downloaded and sent to the ground from the Boeing Co. 777's engines as part of a routine maintenance and monitoring program.
A satelite scan on an area where a floating particle, was suspected to be debris from the plane, came back negative.
But the WSJ said, following conflicting reports the plane was tracked to the Strait of Malacca before it disappeared, Vietnam on Wednesday, suspended its search flights.
It later resumed normal search sweeps after Malaysia's air force chief denied saying he had told local media that military radar facilities had tracked the plane there, the report said.
Ten countries are helping with the search for the missing plane and were being allocated portions to concentrate on.
All leads have so far been false and Malaysian authorities confirm they have now expanded their investigation and all options are being considered including the possibility of hijack, sabotage, and a possible personal or psychological problems of the crew and passengers.
"But Malaysian officials haven't discussed transmissions regarding engine operations or offered any explanation for the primary and backup transponders' not working," WSJ said.
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