Transcript for 'This Week': Search for Malaysia Air 370
Good morning. Welcome to "This week." Frantic scramble. The ssive, high-tech search for flight 370 intensifies. In the skies, on the water. This morning, all the breaking details. Faceoff. We stand ready to impose further sanctions. The dramatic tug of war between presidents Obama and Putin. Is the crisis in Ukraine sparking a new cold war? And cashing in, should college athletes get paid like pros? The critical legal case that could rock March madness. Good morning, again. I'm Martha Raddatz, so much to get to today. Including stats whiz Nate silver of fivethirtyeight. We have a first look at his exclusive analysis of the midterm elections. But we begin oversees with Malaysia air flight 370. As we come on the air this morning, the search for wreckage is intensifying. Focusing on this area where satellites spotted what might be debris. But two weeks in, what happened to flight 370 is a mystery. We all want answers. We have complete coverage of the search for answers, beginning with ABC David Wright who just stepped off a search plane out scanning those waters. David joins us now from Pearce air base in Australia. Reporter: Good morning. We spent ten hours aboard the plane, coming back empty handed. The crew had high hopes, the assigned search area adjusted because of the Chinese satellite image. A few radar contacts, but no visual confirmation of anything significant except for a whale. Visibility was very poor because of low-lying clouds. Today the French provided investigators with what they say is another satellite photo showing possible debris. That will keep the search going. This vast stretch of sea in one of the most remote parts of the planet is now the focus of worldwide attention. State of the art planes have poured over a region of water bigger T bigger than Texas. Coming back empty handed for five days. And yesterday, a Malaysian official was handed an urgent message. The news I just received is that the Chinese ambassador received satellite image of floating objects in the southern corridor. And they will be sending ships to verify. Reporter: That image shows what appears to be a large object floating in the water. Measuring about 74 by 43 feet. A Chinese satellite took the picture March 18th. The location? About 75 miles southwest of the materials spotted in the Australian satellite image released last week. Could it be thsame debris? The two images look very similar, both size and shape. But the important thing is to get someone there to determine what is this thing. Is it airplane part or not. Reporter: We boarded this Australian p-3 Orion, one of more than half a dozen search planes trying to answer that question. On the surface of the water, a growing number of naval vessels. One with a remote sub from Australia, and a merchant vessel and a Chinese ice breaker on the way. If they manage to confirm wreckage on the surface. The scene here, far deeper than where the titanic sank. On average, 14,000 feet, in some parts, 30,000 feet. Too deep for a submarine to go. For the families still searching for answers, it is agonizing. As the wife of the chief steward told ABC's bob woodruff. If it's in the ocean, it brings us closure. But at the back of our mind we hope -- they say a hijacking and all that, it's somewhere. Then there's hope that he's still alive. Reporter: I can't stress enough how remote this search area is. You spend twice as much time traveling to and from as you do there searching. But this Australian crew we were with today, like the Americans we were with last week are determined to provide some answers. Martha th Martha. Our thanks to David. Straight to commander William marks of the seventy fleet which is leading the American portion of the search. Commander marks is aboard the uss blue ridge. Let's talk about the new satellite photos. The French have new satellite photos this morning. Three areas we're looking at. Do you know how close they are together and what that will mean for your portion of the search? I have not seen the French imagery yet. I have seen what Australia and China reported. They are really big chunks of radar return. So if that is the case, that's a positive. I could tell you the radar on our p-8 and on the p-3 boat, they're very advanced radars. So what we'll do is fly at an altitude of about 5,000 feet. That maximizes our radar search over a swath of about 10 to 20 miles on each side of our flight path. With that radar looking down on the surface of the water, can see an object as small as the size of a basketball. And how long can this search last? We work very closely with our international partners. And we just take it day by day. We'll have to see how long as a group, decide we can keep going and how long long we're requested to go. What I tell people is, this is like looking for something somewhere between New York and California. You just don't know where.
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