A warship with an aircraft black box detector along with nine other planes left Australia Sunday morning to search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, two days after ships plucked objects from the Indian Ocean to determine whether they were related to the missing plane. None were confirmed to be from MH370, leaving searchers with no sign of the jet, three weeks after it disappeared.
The objects, spotted 1,150 miles west of Perth, included three that were white, red and orange, the colors of the missing plane, but it wasn't clear if they were from the plane.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority said it was not known how much flotsam, such as from fishing activities, is ordinarily floating in the ocean. "At least one distinctive fishing object has been identified," it said.
Malaysia's Defense and Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters near Kuala Lumpur, where the flight departed from on March 8, that he's hoping for some news soon.
Australian authorities coordinating the operation moved the search 685 miles north on Friday after new analysis of radar and satellite data concluded the plane traveled faster and for a shorter distance after vanishing from civilian radar screens than previously estimated.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the job of locating the debris was still difficult. "We should not underestimate the difficulty of this work — it is an extraordinarily remote location,” he said.
The area spans about 123,000 square miles, roughly the size of Poland or New Mexico. In most places, ocean depths range from about 6,560 feet to 13,120 feet, although the much deeper Diamantina trench -- at over 26,000 feet deep -- edges the search area.
An image captured on Friday by a New Zealand plane showed a white rectangular object floating in the sea, but it was not clear whether it was related to the missing jet or was just sea trash.