MH370: DCA Releases Inmarsat’s Raw Data

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 27 – The Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) today released 45 pages of Inmarsat’s raw satellite data that was used to trace the flight pattern of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. DCA, in a statement, said the data communication logs from Inmarsat, the British satellite communication company, as well as the relevant explanation were being released to enable readers to understand the data.

The statement said the attached data logs along with additional notes for the Signalling Unit Log (9M-MRO) for MH370 was prepared by Inmarsat. Based on this highly technical notes, all times are in Universal Time (UTC) and the table is a readable form of the log file recorded at the ground earth station for communications with the terminal on MH370 from 16:00 to the last Handshake Request (Log On Interrogation) attempt at 01:16 UTC.

The notes also mentioned that some columns, which contain no material information, have been removed from the tables for readability. It was reported that on May 19, Acting Minister of Transport Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein instructed DCA to discuss with Inmarsat on the release of the Inmarsat ‘raw data’ for public consumption. Since then, Inmarsat and DCA have been working for the release of the data communication logs and the technical description of the analysis. Yesterday, Hishammuddin said the decision to release the Inmarsat raw data was to fulfill the request of the family members of those who were on board MH370 and the data could also be used by global experts for their analysis.

Earlier this month, family members of those who were on board the missing aircraft had asked the authorities to release the raw data to enable it to be examined for accuracy by relevant experts. Flight MH370, carrying 239 people from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, disappeared from radar screens when flying over the South China Sea on March 8 after taking off from KL International Airport here at 12.41 am. The Boeing 777-200ER aircraft was supposed to have landed in Beijing at 6.30 am on the same day.

A search that involved the assistance of several countries was launched for the aircraft, initially in the South China Sea and then in the Indian Ocean when it was said to have deviated from its original path. After the analysis of satellite data showed the final position of the aircraft was in the Indian Ocean, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced on March 24 that Flight MH370 had ‘ended in the southern Indian Ocean.’